News Slices:
Department of Education Holds Second External Advisory Group Meeting
Education Commissioner Blomberg Applauds Recipients of Federal Teacher Incentive Fund Grants
Seeking Applications For Content Enhancement Routines
Recommended Summer Reading List Announced
Community Colleges Celebrate 50 Years

Seeds of Success:
Brevard Public Schools Lauded with Governor’s Sterling Award
2007 Florida School Health Association’s Nursing Supervisor of the Year

Branching Out:
2007 DOE Information Database Workshop
Great Florida Teach-In


June 15, 2007
Vol. 1, Issue 11

News Slices

Department of Education Holds Second External Advisory Group Meeting
The Department of Education held a second Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) External Advisory Group meeting in Tampa on June 13 to discuss proposed recommendations for calculating 2007 school grades, Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP), and teacher performance pay as they relate to the 2006 third grade reading FCAT results. The group also discussed the creation of an independent team of experts to review the Department’s conclusions regarding these results.

Attendees included education stakeholder groups throughout the state, such as school district superintendents, school district administrators, district assessment coordinators, DOE officials, and education association representatives.

To view a statement from the Commissioner, go to

Education Commissioner Blomberg Applauds Recipients of Federal Teacher Incentive Fund Grants
Education Commissioner Jeanine Blomberg recently applauded four Florida school districts who will receive $13.6 million in Federal Teacher Incentive Fund grants from the U.S. Department of Education, which will enable states and school districts to provide financial incentives to educators in high-needs areas for raising student achievement or closing the achievement gap.

The National Institute for Excellence in Teaching in Lake County, Orange County Public Schools, Hillsborough County Public Schools, and Miami-Dade County Public Schools received the grants.

For the full story, visit More information about the Federal Teacher Incentive Fund grants is available at

New Web Tool To Aid In Search For Next Florida Commissioner of Education
The Department of Education announced a new Web tool to aid in the search for the next Florida Commissioner of Education. Interested parties can visit to view a variety of documents related to the search. Information such as position requirements, applicant data, applicant search criteria and relevant deadlines are all available to the public through this new tool. The site will continually be updated as new applicants apply and new information is made available.

Recruitment initiatives have begun and will follow the State Board of Education approved timeline. PROACT Search, Inc., the executive search firm hired by the State Board of Education, will facilitate the identification, screening, interviewing and selection of candidates matched to Florida’s needs and interests. More than 500 recruiting letters were sent by the search firm to a list of potential candidates.

Seeking Applications For Content Enhancement Routines
The Florida Center for Research in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (FCR-STEM) is requesting applications from Florida middle and high schools to participate in a professional development program related to Content Enhancement Routines. These routines provide teaching tools that can be integrated into the comprehensive teaching model for math and science adopted by a school or district. The routines are instructional procedures that revolve around visual devices (graphic organizers) that enable teachers to focus on targeted information, present information explicitly, prompt students to elaborate on the targeted topic, and make ideas and relationships concrete. Visual devices are used to help students organize, understand, remember, and apply information presented in class. The routines facilitate the use of research-based instructional strategies that address student needs related to reading in the content area and vocabulary development.

For this initiative, FCR-STEM invites middle and high schools in Florida where instructional leaders and all math and/or science teachers commit to participate in the professional development and implementation during the 2007-08 school year. Academies and schools-within-schools are also eligible to apply.

There are no financial costs to the school or to the district. Applications should be submitted to FCR-STEM no later than June 30, 2007. If you have additional questions, please contact Todd Clark at or (850) 245-0764 or Dr. Marty Beech at or (850) 921-0687.

Following are links to the application and additional information about the process:

* Information about Content Enhancement Routines -

* An application for schools to apply to participate in this program -

* Information about the Content Enhancement Professional Development Initiative -

Department of Education Reminds Parents of Summer Food Service Program
Children who are eligible to receive free or reduced-price meals during the school year can also receive meals during the summer. Through the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP), operated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and administered in Florida by the Department of Education, qualified students can continue to receive nutritious meals during the summer months when most schools are closed. To learn more about the program, or to find out if your child qualifies, contact the Florida Department of Education, Food and Nutrition Management at 1-800-622-5985, or visit

Recommended Summer Reading List Announced
Education Commissioner Jeanine Blomberg recently announced the Just Read, Families! Recommended Summer Reading List. The reading list encourages students to continue their reading efforts during the summer vacation months. Research indicates that children who do not continue to read while on vacation risk losing progress made during the school year. The Just Read, Families! suggested reading list can be found at The site offers parents the tools they need to nurture a reading-friendly environment at home during the break. Resources include links to county and municipal public libraries, tips for parents on reading with children and a list of recommended books for each grade level.

Community Colleges Celebrate 50 Years
The Florida Community College System recognizMyrtle Hutcherson poses with NFCC President Morris G. Steen, Jr.ed Myrtle Hutcherson with the Florida community college service award during a statewide 50th Anniversary gala held Wednesday, June 6, in Tampa, Fla. Hutcherson has the distinction of being the community college employee with the greatest length of service. She is senior staff assistant to the vice president for academic affairs at North Florida Community College (NFCC) in Madison, Fla.

Three hundred dignitaries and guests attended the event at the Renaissance Hotel celebrating 50 years of Florida’s nationally recognized community college system. Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp, Chancellor J. David Armstrong and presidents from public two-year colleges throughout the state took part in the festivities. Hutcherson, who began her career at NFCC in 1964, received a clock mounted on an engraved wooden plaque from the Division of Community Colleges for her service. (Pictured above: The Division of Community Colleges highlights Myrtle Hutcherson's career at 50th Anniversary gala, June 6, in Tampa. NFCC President Morris G. Steen, Jr., presents Hutcherson with Community College Employee Service Award).

Seeds of Success

Brevard Public Schools Lauded with Governor’s Sterling Award
Governor Charlie Crist recently announced that Brevard Public Schools (BPS) earned a 2007 Governor’s Sterling Award. The coveted honor recognizes excellence in management, operations and student performance. In the 15 years that the award has been presented, BPS is only the second school district to receive the honor at the district level. The last district selected was Pinellas County in 1993.

Alliance Recognizes Students in Arts Achievement
The Florida Alliance for Arts Education (FAAE) and former First Lady Columba Bush have recognized 24 high school students from throughout the state with a scholarship of excellence for achievement in the arts.

Each year, the FAAE and the former First Lady, through the Arts Recognition Program, acknowledge high school seniors representing various arts disciplines for their artistic merit and academic excellence. Students in dance, music, theatre, and visual art are eligible for a $1,000 scholarship to be used for their continued pursuit of the arts in higher education. To read more on the story, visit

2007 Florida School Health Association’s Nursing Supervisor of the Year
Eileen McGatlin, BSN, RN, NCSN, was chosen as the 2007 Florida School Health Association’s Nursing Supervisor of the Year. She was recently honored at the FSHA Conference at the Orlando Airport Marriott. Eileen has been the School Board Nurse for Seminole County for the past 16 years and has been the Lead School Board Nurse for the past nine years. In January, she was chosen as the 2007 School Nurse of the Year from the Florida Association of School Nurses. To see more, go to

Alachua County Middle School Student Selected for Summer Institute
Korina Coe, a seventh grade student at High Springs Community School, was chosen by the Renaissance Learning Company to participate in the Summer Institute for the Gifted at Emory University in Atlanta, Ga. The program, which began in 1984, provides quality education and social opportunities for the academically gifted students. To read the details, visit

Branching Out

2007 DOE Information Database Workshop
June 19-21, 2007
Orlando, Fla.

The Florida Department of Education will host the 2007 DOE Information Database Workshop June 19-21 at the Florida Hotel and Convention Center in Orlando. This year’s workshop will cover updates in procedures and requirements related to the DOE Information Database system, as well as provide an overview of the state’s current student, staff, and finance database requirements for district technical and program staff. For more information, visit or call Arlene Roberts at (850) 245-0400.

Great Florida Teach-In
June 22, 2007
Tampa Convention Center, Tampa, Fla.

The Great Florida Teach-In (Teach-In) provides a convenient forum to enable teachers seeking employment in Florida to obtain interviews with school and district personnel responsible for hiring teachers. In addition to the opportunity to meet district personnel, teachers may also obtain information regarding teaching and living in Florida.

The Teach-In is for those who are seeking teaching positions in several of Florida’s school districts. If you are interested, be sure to contact the school district(s) of interest directly.

To register or to obtain more information, visit

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