2016 Finalist, Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting

Failure Factories

The Tampa Bay Times exposed how the Pinellas County School Board abandoned integration, then deprived black schools in poor neighborhoods of resources until they were awash in violence and academic failure, making Pinellas County the most concentrated site of academic failure in the state of Florida. As a result of the series, officials enacted reforms including increased funding, improved teacher training, and the converting of three of the affected schools into magnets. The Florida Department of Education opened an investigation into the district’s use of federal Title I dollars to ensure that money is spent properly.

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