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Middle School Journalists Question St. Petersburg Mayor

Kriseman | John Hopkins | Pinellas Schools

The kids were from John Hopkins, whose school newspaper has been named the best middle school newspaper in the U.S. The student newspaper at Lakewood High School was named the best in U.S. high schools.

ST. PETERSBURG – It was not a usual question and answer session that St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman has with middle school students.

Gun violence in St. Petersburg is on the rise, how do you think you can curb gun violence in the city? What are some of the goals you have for the city? Why did you decide to let the Tampa Bay Rays look elsewhere? What are some updates on the Pier? What are the most imperative issues facing the city? Why did you not want Donald Trump to come to the St. Petersburg?

There was good reason the questions seemed like they were coming from a group of journalists. They were journalists.

Kriseman spent time congratulating and answering questions from John Hopkins Middle School’s journalism staff in recognition of their most recent accomplishment of being named the best middle school newspaper in the country. For the second time in three years, the National Scholastic Press Association awarded John Hopkins Middle and its publication, The JHop Times, with the honor. The award is judged and awarded based on coverage and content, quality of writing and reporting, leadership on the opinion page, evidence of in-depth reporting, design, photography, art and graphics. Lakewood High’s Spartan News Network was awarded the national top honor for high schools and Kriseman plans to pay them a visit as well.

“I’ve been to a lot of classes and the quality of these questions was impressive,” Kriseman said. “These were some serious questions and I can’t tell you how impressed I am.”

For information about Pinellas County Schools, go to

Picture of St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman fielding questions from student journalists at John Hopkins Middle School is courtesy of Pinellas County Schools.

St. Petersburg | Education | Kriseman | John Hopkins | Lakewood High | Pinellas Schools | TB Reporter

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