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April 13, 2004

Frances Marine or
MacKay Jimeson
(850) 245-0413

First Leg of Bus Tour Celebrating Anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education Kicks off in Orlando
Local legislators laud celebration of landmark Supreme Court decision

ORLANDO — The statewide bus tour celebrating the 50th anniversary of the landmark Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision announced by Governor Jeb Bush during his State of the State Address completes its first leg in the greater Orlando area this week. The bus carries an exhibit commemorating the contributions of African American leaders in Florida's education history. With stops in Eatonville — hometown of author Zora Neal Hurston — and the Florida A&M University Law School in downtown Orlando, the first portion of the tour will end in Sanford on Friday.

"The anniversary of the Brown v. Board decision gives us an opportunity to reflect on the strides we have made over the past half-century toward equality in education, as well as current efforts and successes in closing the achievement gap," said Governor Bush. "I am pleased to share this exhibit with all Floridians and thank local community leaders for their support in this effort."

The exhibit, which highlights displays of Florida's heritage, including pictures, sculptures, and artifacts, was unveiled at the Florida Department of Education during Black History Month celebrations this year. Members of the Florida Conference of Black State Legislators from the Orlando area lauded the commemoration.

"I am pleased to welcome this tour to our community," said State Senator Gary Siplin (D-Orlando). "It is important for all Floridians to recognize the importance of this landmark decision and continue to work to improve equality and access to education for all students."

"As we work to ensure that all children in Florida have the opportunity to succeed in school and have access to higher education, it is important to remember the struggles we have overcome," said State Representative Bruce Antone (D-Orlando), who sits on the House Education Appropriations Subcommittee. "I encourage the people of Orlando — especially students — to come out to this exhibit and learn about our rich heritage and the many contributions African Americans have made to education in Florida."

Contributors to the exhibit include Florida A&M University Black Archives, the University of Central Florida, the Department of State, the State Museum of Florida and numerous school districts. Partners include the Central Florida African American Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Orlando Airport Authority, who provided the bus.

"I am grateful to our local partners and all of those who worked so hard to make the exhibit and the tour possible," said Education Commissioner Jim Horne. "As our students continue to shine, Florida truly is fulfilling the promise of Brown v. Board of Education. It is fitting that we should celebrate its anniversary across the state."

The tour made its first stops in the Orlando area at Nap Ford Community School and Carver Middle School After School Program yesterday. Today, the bus made its way to Eatonville with stops at Hungerford Elementary, Robert Hungerford Prep School, and the Denton Johnson Community Center Boys & Girls Club. The schedule for the remaining stops on the Orlando leg of the bus tour is as follows:

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

7:00 - 10:45 a.m.
Jones High School
801 South Rio Grande Avenue
Orlando, Florida 32805
Principal: Mr. Lorenzo Phillips
Contact: Ms. Patricia Painter
Visitors: 200 students (Grades 11 & 12)

11:00 a.m. - 3:00 a.m.
Memorial Middle School
2220 West 29th Street
Orlando, Florida 32805
Principal: Ms. Gail Burke
Other Contact: Mr. Jerome Thompson
Visitors: 750 students (Grades 9-12)

4:30 - 7:00 a.m.
Rio Grande Charter School & New Covenant Baptist Church
2210 South Rio Grande Avenue
Orlando, Florida 32805
Contact: Reverend Bracy 407-425-3001
Barbara Smith 407-649-9122
Visitors: 25 students (Grades K-5)/50 Parishioners

Thursday, April 15, 2004

7:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Colonial High School
6100 Oleander Drive
Orlando, Florida 32807
Principal: Dr. Paul Mitchell
Contact: Ms. Rosalie Reyes
Visitors: 150 students (Grades 10-12)

1:00 - 3:50 p.m.
Howard Middle School
800 East Robinson
Orlando, Florida 32801
Acting Principal: Mr. Lee Brooks
Visitors: 180 students (Grades 6-8)

5:00 - 8:00 p.m.
FAMU Law School
One North Orange Avenue
Orlando, Florida 32801
Contact: Claudine Beale
Asst Director of Development & Alumni Affairs
Visitors: 50-75 people

Friday, April 16, 2004

7:30 - 10:30 a.m.
Crooms Academy of Information Technology High School
2200 West 13th Street
Sanford, Florida 32771
Principal: Ms. Connie Collins
Visitors: 200 students (Grades 9-12)

11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Sanford Middle School
1700 South French Avenue
Sanford, Florida 32711
History Depart Head: Keri Stewart
Visitors: 100 students (Grades 6-8)