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Press Release

Monday, October 26, 2009

DOE Press Office
(850) 245-0413

DOE Celebrates Groundbreaking Historical and Cultural Exhibit with Florida Educators
~ Famed collection accessible to students across the state through use of iTunes U ~

TALLAHASSEE – Florida Commissioner of Education Dr. Eric J. Smith joined principals and superintendents from across north Florida today for a first-of-its-kind education academy focused on The Kinsey Collection: The Shared Treasures of Bernard and Shirley Kinsey: “Where Art and History Intersect,” currently on display at the Mary Brogan Museum of Art and Science. More than 70 guests were on hand to enjoy the exhibit and learn how they can bring the treasures of Bernard and Shirley Kinsey right into their schools and classrooms using Florida’s recently launched iTunes U Web site. Academy participants were able to explore this compelling exhibition in person while learning first-hand what their students can experience through the state’s new digital content sharing platform.

“When I first heard about the works that Bernard and Shirley had amassed, I knew our students needed to witness the inspirational power of their collection,” said Commissioner Smith. “Thanks to the innovation of iTunes U, students across Florida can share the compelling and emotional experience of this very personal exhibit right in their own classroom.”

Florida’s Department of Education/Macy’s 2010 Teacher of the Year Megan Allen provided an interactive iTunes U tutorial to all guests prior to touring the exhibit to showcase how teachers can incorporate The Kinsey Collection in their classrooms and lesson plans. The partnership between the Brogan Museum, Apple and The Kinsey Collection was possible thanks to the support of the Florida Education Foundation. The Foundation’s Chairman, Allen Levy, joined Commissioner Smith and Florida Association of District School Superintendents Chief Executive Officer, Bill Montford, to present representatives of the Brogan museum with $20,000 in funding to further promote the exhibit in its digital format to students around the state.

“The Kinsey Collection is a unique and wonderful opportunity,” said Montford. “It is a world class collection and our students will benefit tremendously from the generosity of Bernard and Shirley Kinsey.”

The Shared Treasures of Bernard and Shirley Kinsey is a breathtaking collection of more than ninety rare books, sculptures, paintings, documents, manuscripts and vintage photographs which tell the story of African Americans in the Americas from 1632 to present. The collection’s artwork and historical pieces are brought to life through narration featuring prominent African Americans in entertainment and related fields including Angela Bassett, Courtney B. Vance, Lou Gossett Jr., and Dennis Haysbert. The exhibit will remain on display at the Brogan Museum through March 10, 2010. As part of the iTunes U resource sharing library, The Kinsey Collection materials will remain available for all of Florida’s students beyond that date.

For more information about The Kinsey Collection, visit www.thekinseycollection.com or www.thebrogan.org. For more information about Florida’s recently launched iTunes U Web site, visit www.floridaitunesu.com.