ST. PETERSBURG — The St. Petersburg Branch NAACP is hosting two community-based conversations with Dr. Noliwe Rooks on Friday, April 6 at noon and Saturday, April 7 at 10 a.m. Both events will be held at Pinellas Technical College.
Dr. Rooks, who has roots in Clearwater, is an associate professor in Africana Studies and Feminist, Gender and Sexuality Studies. She is also the author of four books, with the most recent entitled “Cutting School: Privatization, Segregation and the end of Public Education.” While her work is expansive, it is her research on several schools around the country that has educated black children successfully.
The Pinellas County School District has recently released its second-quarter data report to the community. A summary of the report includes the following:
The number and percent of black students who graduated on time with a standard diploma in four years was 69.3 percent. While some may be celebrating this two percent increase above the target, it is those type expectations only a community who is informed and demand excellence can demand greater.
The percent and number of black students in high school with a level at or above the Florida State Assessment is 22 percent.
The percent of 11th graders with a 3.0 grade point average is 21.4 percent. However, with many Florida universities moving toward or have already achieved preeminent status, the minimum entrance grade point average is 4.2. This means that if our 11th graders remained on this track, 79 percent of them will not be able to attend many Florida universities.