News Slices:
Hispanic Heritage Month Contests for Students and Teachers
Education Commissioner Blomberg Announces Hispanic Heritage Month Recommended Reading List
More Florida Students Take SAT and AP Exams Than Ever Before
Florida School Breakfast Week
Lake-Sumter Community College Unveils New Science-Math Building
Hispanic Heritage Month Essay Contest

Seeds of Success:
Princeton Elementary To Receive Award For Recent Renovation
Lee County Teacher Selected For Review Committee In International Baccalaureate Program
Lake Brantley Senior Wins New Car

Branching Out:
2007 K-12 Conference & Innovation Fair

Florida College Access Network Conference


 


September 7, 2007

Vol. 1, Issue 17

News Slices

Hispanic Heritage Month Contests for Students and Teachers
Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated nationwide and begins on September 15. In honor of this celebration, Gov. Charlie Crist is inviting all Florida students in kindergarten through 12th grades to take part in the Florida Hispanic Heritage Month essay contest. One winner will be selected from each of the three grade-level categories, elementary (grades K-5), middle (grades 6-8) and high school (grades 9-12). Winners will receive a full four-year tuition scholarship to a Florida college or university of their choice, provided by the Florida Prepaid College Foundation, and a computer. Essays should answer the question: “In what way will you impact the future of the Hispanic community in Florida and why?”

The Governor is also encouraging students, parents, teachers and principals to nominate Hispanic, full-time educators in elementary, middle or high schools for the inaugural Hispanic Heritage Month Excellence in Education Award. Three winners will be selected: one elementary school (K-5) teacher, one middle school (6-8) teacher and one high school (9-12) teacher. Winners will receive a check for $1,500 and a $500 gift card for classroom supplies.

The contests are the first in a month-long schedule of events planned to commemorate Florida’s Hispanic heritage. For more information on both contests, visit the Governor's Web site at www.flgov.com/search. To download contest entry and nomination forms, click here.


Education Commissioner Blomberg Announces Hispanic Heritage Month Recommended Reading List
Education Commissioner Jeanine Blomberg recently announced the Just Read, Florida! recommended reading list in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs from Sept. 15 – Oct. 15. The literary works in this year’s recommended reading list feature Hispanic authors and were selected to help increase students’ interests in Hispanic culture. The reading list contains appropriate selections for all ages, kindergarten through adult. For the full reading list, visit www.justreadflorida.com.


More Florida Students Take SAT and AP Exams Than Ever Before
According to a national release of SAT results, 97,366 of Florida’s 2007 high school graduates took the SAT – the largest number of Florida students to ever take the test. This number equates to an increase of 3 percent (2,765 graduates) over the previous year, which surpasses the national increase of 2 percent. In addition, the number of Florida test takers as a percentage of high school graduates was up slightly – from 63 percent to 63.6 percent – whereas the national percentage dipped slightly (down to 48.1 percent from 48.2 percent in 2006). The College Board also released Advanced Placement (AP) results, and for the second year in a row, Florida had the greatest one-year increase in the number of public school AP exam-takers when compared to all other states from 2006 to 2007. To read the full story, visit www.fldoe.org.


Florida School Breakfast Week
School cafeterias across Florida will celebrate the first annual Florida School Breakfast Week, September 17-21, with the theme “Excellence Begins with School Breakfast.” Florida School Breakfast Week promotes the availability of breakfast for all students at school and the strong link between eating a nutritious breakfast and improved academic achievement and physical performance.

Research conducted by the University of Minnesota and Harvard University concludes that students who eat breakfast are more alert, have improved memory and problem-solving skills, and perform better on standardized tests. Other research shows that behavioral, emotional, and academic problems are more prevalent among children with hunger, and academic performance and readiness are enhanced when students start their day with a nutritious meal.

The Florida Department of Education Food and Nutrition Management section, responsible for the administrative and financial oversight of the federal Child Nutrition Programs in Florida, expects to narrow the gap between the number of Florida students eating breakfast at school and the number of students eating school lunch. In Florida, more than 488,000 school breakfast meals are served each day to students, whereas the school lunch program serves an average of 1.28 million lunch meals each day to Florida students. Only 38 percent of the students who eat lunch also eat breakfast.

For more information about food and nutrition in Florida schools, please visit www.fldoe.org/FNM.


Lake-Sumter Community College Unveils New Science-Math Building
A new, 52,000 square-foot Leesburg Campus structure is now the Lake-Sumter Community College (LSCC) state-of-the-art Science-Math Building. The building has 12 large labs for classes in chemistry, biology, physics, anatomy and physiology, microbiology, physical science, geology and environmental science, as well as 10 multi-functional math and science classrooms. The new building was opened as students ushered in the fall semester. To learn more about LSCC, visit www.lscc.edu.


Seeds of Success

Princeton Elementary To Receive Award For Recent Renovation
Princeton Elementary in Orange County will receive the Central Florida Chapter of Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) prestigious Eagle Award for the outstanding renovation of the historic school.

Princeton Elementary won the ABC Excellence in Construction Eagle Award for Historical Renovation in the $1-$5 million category. Wharton-Smith, Inc. was in charge of the project, which took about eight months to complete. For the full story, visit www.fldoe.org/SuccessStories/2007/08-10.asp.


Volusia County Names Superintendent’s Outstanding Achievement Award Winner
The Volusia County School District and FUTURES Foundation named Alice Partlow, office manager/recertification assistant for Staff Development, as the 2007 Superintendent’s Outstanding Achievement Award winner. The Superintendent’s Outstanding Achievement Award is co-sponsored by FUTURES Foundation and Volusia County Schools. It was initiated to honor support staff members who have demonstrated outstanding commitment, teamwork, cooperation and innovation in their jobs.


Lee County Teacher Selected For Review Committee In International Baccalaureate Program
Fort Myers High School AP Calculus teacher Donna Sowers was recently selected to participate in the Group 5 (mathematics) curriculum review committee for the International Baccalaureate (IB) program. The Lee County teacher will travel to Cardiff, Wales, this fall to convene with the rest of the committee.


Lake Brantley Senior Wins New Car
Lake Brantley High School student Tabitha Atkinson recently won a new Ford Mustang in the Mullinax Ford “Drive For Success” program for the 2006-07 school year.

The program is open to high school seniors and juniors in both public and private schools throughout Orange and Seminole counties and is designed to encourage students to work harder in the classroom. Entry is based on students earning A’s, B’s and/or maintaining perfect attendance during the school year.


Branching Out


2007 K-12 Conference & Innovation Fair
Oct. 2-5, 2007
Caribe Royale Orlando

The 2007 K-12 Conference will be held at the Caribe Royale in Orlando Oct. 2-5. The Conference will focus on innovative approaches to improving student achievement, secondary public school career, collegiate, and magnet academies; and redesigning teacher compensation. This conference will be an opportunity to highlight the state’s best model academies and programs to other schools looking to implement such programs of their own, and discuss how various ways of compensating our teachers lead to the improved achievement of our students. To view the agenda, visit www.fldoe.org/schools/conference.


Florida College Access Network Conference
Oct. 10-12, 2007
InterContinental Hotel
Tampa, Fla.

The Third Annual Florida College Access Network (FCAN) Conference "Appreciating the Past: Building for Our Future" will be held at the InterContinental Hotel, Tampa, Fla., Oct. 10-12. The FCAN Conference is the Florida Department of Education’s flagship event for schools, colleges, educational institutions and organizations that promote improving college access for Florida’s students. FCAN encourages collaboration among people who are committed to increasing the number of Florida's college-bound high school graduates. Individuals interested in intercultural issues, parental involvement, and ways to improve student achievement should attend this event. The Network focuses primarily on services and educational resources that address specific needs of historically underrepresented students: racial and ethnic minorities, English language learners, economically disadvantaged students, and students with disabilities. To learn more about the Conference or to register, visit www.fldoe.org/FCAN/conference.asp.


 
 
 
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