Cathy Carter

Cathy Carter is the education reporter for WUSF 89.7 and StateImpact Florida.

Before joining WUSF, Cathy was the local host of NPR’s Morning Edition for Delaware Public Media and reported on a variety of topics from education to the arts.

Cathy also reported for WAMU, the NPR news station in Washington D.C, was a host at XM Satellite Radio and wrote arts and culture stories for a variety of newspaper,s including the Virginian Pilot and the Baltimore Sun.

Her work has been honored by journalism organizations such as the Society of Professional Journalists, the Maryland Press Association and the Delaware Press Association.

As a Massachusetts native and a graduate of Boston’s Emerson College, Cathy - as are all citizens under state mandate - had no choice but to be born a Boston Red Sox fan.

The moon will travel into Earth's shadow early next week.

Overnight from Sunday into Monday, North Americans will have a prime view of a total lunar eclipse.

The Republican Party of Florida has elected a new leader.

State Sen. Joe Gruters of Sarasota was chosen to lead the state GOP at the party's annual meeting in Orlando Saturday.

The Florida Department of Education says the state is experiencing a critical teacher shortage. Meanwhile, school districts across Florida continue to struggle to fill teacher positions.

A Sarasota lawmaker is proposing to make it easier for retired teachers to get back in the classroom.

Theresa Shabazz of Tampa was convicted of welfare fraud 32 years ago in her home state of Wisconsin. After serving 2 years’ probation, her voting rights were restored.

“Then I came here and I couldn't vote,” she said of her 2016 move to Florida. “I couldn't voice my opinion on how I felt about things."

On Tuesday, Shabazz walked out of the Gilder Elections Service Center in Tampa wearing a smile and a sticker emblazoned with an American flag. It read, "I Registered to Vote." 

As life slows down for the holidays, it's an ideal time to visit one, or a few, of the region's many art museums.

Public education is supposed to be the great equalizer.

And while it's easy to focus on teachers and curriculum as the engines behind a student’s success, housing instability also affects learning. Frequent school moves in childhood can impede academic and social development, research shows.

Like everywhere in Florida, Hillsborough County has a lack of affordable housing.

The issue has grown more acute due to a growing population, deep federal cuts to subsidized housing programs, and stagnant wages.

High above downtown Tampa, giant construction cranes tower near what will become the city’s newest offering in luxury living. The project - 815 Water Street - will feature two towers of apartments and condominiums replete with amenities such as a rooftop bar, fitness center and a ground-level grocery store.

But drive just two miles west, and you will find the bulldozed cinder block remains of what used to be North Boulevard Homes, Tampa’s oldest public housing complex.

The Sarasota County School Board has voted to keep its new gender guidelines following weeks of acrimony over the issue of parental notification.

The instructions were sent to Sarasota County schools in October.

All 120 Florida House seats were up for grabs in 2018 and a few races offered a few firsts for candidates in Tampa Bay.

Republican Ray Blacklidge and Democrat Jennifer Webb battled for an open seat in Pinellas County’s House District 69 for the seat being vacated by Republican Kathleen Peters.

In the end, the win went to Democrat Webb who will become the first openly gay woman in the Florida Legislature.

NPR Tiny Desk Contest winners Tank and the Bangas from New Orleans are among the artists that will perform at the Gasparilla Music Festival at Curtis Hixon Park in Tampa next March. 

The Gulf Coast of Florida is already feeling impacts of Hurricane Michael with minor coastal flooding due to storm surge and high tide.

Starting next school year, the State College of Florida will no longer offer college-level courses in Sarasota and Manatee county high schools.

Instead, students can only access dual enrollment classes online or at SCF campuses.

The state's newest school voucher program is ramping up.

Beginning Monday Oct. 1, Floridians purchasing a new car will now have the option to designate up to $105 of the vehicle's sales tax to fund what's called Hope Scholarships.  The money generated from the new car sales tax program will help fund scholarships for students who are being bullied at school.

A controversial education amendment will not go to voters in November.

In a 4-3 decision, Florida's Supreme Court has ruled that Amendment 8 should remain off the ballot.

The court upheld the order of a Leon County Judge who decreed the measure's title and summary to be misleading.

Hillsborough County residents will see a new tax referendum on their November ballots.

Voters will decide if they support a half-cent sales tax to help pay for improvements to the county's public schools.

Drinking water at several Polk County Public Schools has tested positive for lead.

Now, the school district says it will test all of its schools for the highly toxic metal.

Sarasota business owners say they've taken a financial hit since the outbreak of red tide.

Throughout the month of August, Visit Sarasota, the official tourism agency for Sarasota County has conducted a survey of 450 businesses. A majority reported a slump in revenue due to the fish kills and odor which has impacted tourism in southwest Florida.

Florida remains the only state that hasn't received approval of a federally mandated education plan.

Now, civil rights groups are weighing in on the delay.

The Every Student Succeeds Act gives states latitude in creating systems for measuring student success, but they still have to be accepted by the U.S. Department of Education.

Florida's ESSA plan was initially rejected for failing to address several provisions including testing for English language learners.

According to the state's largest teacher's union, educators vote at a higher rate than the average Floridian.

Several dozen Pinellas County teachers gathered in downtown St. Petersburg Sunday for a "Get Out The Vote" rally. Like their counterparts across the country, the teachers wore the color red as a sign of solidarity. 

In December 2017, Pinellas County community leaders met to discuss the state of education in the county.

They ended up commissioning a report looking at how to best educate students after high school. The group explored metrics related to college and career readiness, access and affordability, college performance and workforce and economic outcomes.

The application process has begun for a new state scholarship designed to help kids who are struggling with reading.

Passed into law this spring as part of a larger education bill, the scholarships will give $500 to students who score below the Level 3 passing grade on the state's third and fourth-grade reading exam.

There has been an arrest in the Clearwater 'stand your ground' case.

The State Attorney's office is charging Micheal Drejka with manslaughter in the death of Markeis McGlockton.

According to a press release, an arrest warrant was issued this Monday morning and Drejka is being booked into the Pinellas County Jail. His bond has been set at $100,000.

The Reverend Al Sharpton led a rally at a Clearwater church Sunday to protest Florida’s controversial 'stand your ground' law.

And while the civil rights leader spoke in the sanctuary, demonstrators made their feelings heard outside.

President Donald Trump attracted plenty of praise and criticism from people flocking to the Florida State Fairgrounds Tuesday.

WUSF reporters spoke with supporters attending his campaign rally and protestors outside. What they had to say showed exactly how divided Floridians are about topics ranging from immigration to the environment to Trump himself.

Research suggests that playing the game of chess can improve a child’s memory and attention span. It can also help kids with planning and decision-making.  

250 young players from Hillsborough County recently put their critical thinking skills to the test during the school district’s 3rd Annual Chess Tournament at Franklin Middle School in Tampa.

Supporters gathered in downtown St. Petersburg Thursday to welcome survivors of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. The voter registration and gun violence awareness event at Williams Park was part of the March For Our Lives "Road to Change" bus tour.   

In his memoir, "Glorious Days and Nights," Herb Snitzer wrote that his camera allowed him to experience things he couldn't have dreamed of.

The Dunedin City Commission has approved a one-year pilot program that will allow round-trip ferry service from Dunedin to Clearwater.

Dunedin Parks and Recreation director Vince Gizzi says the city has been working on logistics for more than a year.

A crowd of 200 filled Selby Library auditorium in Sarasota Wednesday night for a town hall featuring students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Hundreds more were unable to get a seat after the hall reached capacity.

This summer, students involved in the March For Our Lives movement are traveling across the country to energize young people. Local organizers say they want to educate and encourage them to vote.   

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