September 12, 2008
Vol. 2, Issue 19
Governor Crist Invites Florida’s Students to Participate in Hispanic Heritage Month Essay Contest and Recognition of Hispanic Teachers
Governor Charlie Crist invites Florida students in kindergarten through 12th grades to participate in the sixth annual Florida Hispanic Heritage Month essay contest. The Governor also encourages students, parents, teachers and principals to nominate full-time educators in elementary, middle or high schools for the inaugural Hispanic Heritage Month Excellence in Education Award. The contests are the first in a month-long schedule of events planned to commemorate Florida’s Hispanic heritage. The theme for this year’s celebration is “Honoring a Legacy, Shaping Florida’s Future.”
About the Essay Contest
The essay contest is open to all Florida students in kindergarten through 12th grades. 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. Essays should answer the question: “In what ways does the foundation of Florida’s Hispanic legacy help to build the future of Florida’s innovation economy?”
Entries must be mailed to the Executive Office of the Governor: Hispanic Heritage Month Committee, 400 S. Monroe Street, Suite LL-10, Tallahassee, Florida 32399, postmarked by Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2008.
- Each student may enter only one essay, no longer than 500 words and typed or handwritten in print, rather than cursive writing.
- Essays must include the student's name, home address, telephone number, school the student attends, grade level and essay title.
- Essay must be accompanied by a parental waiver form, which can be found at www.FloridaHispanicHeritage.com.
About the Excellence in Education Award
Governor Crist’s annual Excellence in Education Award Contest is open to all Hispanic, full time educators in an elementary, middle or high school in Florida. Three winners will be selected: one elementary (K-5) teacher, one middle school (6-8) teacher and one high school (9-12) teacher. Winners will receive a check for $1,500.
Nomination forms must be mailed to the Executive Office of the Governor: Excellence in Education Award Committee, 400 S. Monroe Street, LL-10, Tallahassee, Florida 32399, and postmarked by midnight of Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2008. Forms can be found at www.FloridaHispanicHeritage.com. Nominations may be submitted by a principal, teacher, parent or student.
Department of Education Releases 2008 Hispanic Heritage Month Recommended Reading List
The Florida Department of Education Just Read, Florida! Office released the 2008 recommended reading list in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. The reading list contains appropriate selections for all ages, kindergarten through adult, to help increase interest in the many aspects and contributions of Hispanic culture to the state of Florida. To view the list, go to www.justreadflorida.com.
Art Builds Florida! Statewide Student Contest
The Art Builds Florida! statewide student art contest is sponsored by Citizens for Florida Arts, Inc., a citizen support organization of the Florida Department of State’s Division of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the Division of Cultural Affairs. This contest is open to all Florida high school students grades nine through 12. From Sept. 8, 2008, to Nov. 7, 2008, students can submit original, two-dimensional artwork to assist the Division in promoting the following four key areas of Florida’s strategic plan, Culture Builds Florida’s Future: leadership, design and development, learning and wellness, and strengthening the economy. More information about this contest is located at www.florida-arts.org/artcontest. Questions may be directed to Laura Stone at firstname.lastname@example.org.
State Rep. Joe Pickens Selected As St. Johns River Community College President
The St. Johns River Community College (SJRCC) presidential search committee has selected State Rep. Joe Pickens, R-Palatka, to replace departing President Robert McLendon. The Board of Trustees will vote on the recommendation at its September 17 meeting.
Breck Sloan, trustee and head of the search committee, confirmed the recommendation Wednesday afternoon after interviewing three finalists. Thirty-two people applied for the position, but Pickens was the only candidate with connections to the community college.
Pickens, who chairs the House committee that oversees education issues, will leave the Legislature this year because of term limits. He’s served as special counsel to McLendon since 2005.
Indian River State College Receives National Recognition for Technology Program
In an age where high-tech sciences are big business, Indian River State College (IRSC) is at the forefront in the educational movement to train a workforce in emergent technologies.
Chrys Panayiotou, chairman of the college's Electronics Engineering Department, and Jose Farinos, dean of the IRSC's Advanced Technology Division, have received national recognition for their work at the IRSC Robotics and Photonics Institute.
Photonics is the study of light and other types of radiant energy. Its common application today is to transmit information more efficiently than with electronics.
In July, Farinos and Panayiotou received the 2008 Innovative Program Award at the Semiconductors, Automated Manufacturing, Electronics — Training and Education Conference in Austin, Texas.
National Science Bowl for High School Students
The National Science Bowl® is a highly visible educational event and academic competition among teams of high school students who attend science seminars and compete in a verbal forum to solve technical problems and answer questions in all branches of science and math. The National Science Bowl will take place April 30 – May 5, 2009. The regional and national events encourage student involvement in math and science activities, improve awareness of career options in science and technology, and provide an avenue of enrichment and reward for academic science achievement. For more information, visit http://www.scied.science.doe.gov/nsb/Regionals.htm.
2008 Young Minds Digital Times™ Film Competition
The Young Minds Digital Times Film Competition is seeking entries. This competition is free to all student filmmakers from grades six through 12, to submit entries such as short films, documentaries, music videos or public service announcements for professional review. Winners in each of the two grand prize categories will receive trips for two to the South By Southwest Film and Interactive Festival March 13 – 17, 2009. The competition is a co-sponsored collaboration between OneSeventeen Media and Manor New Tech High School.
The deadline for registration is Oct. 17, 2008, and the final entry submission deadline is Dec. 19, 2008. Submissions can be entered at www.youngmindsdigitaltimes.com. Eighteen finalists will be awarded prizes in two major tracks and eight categories with the winners announced on or before Feb. 13, 2009. Additionally, there will be Judges Choice Awards for categories such as Most Creative and Most Innovative Problem Solving.
Read for the Record
Jumpstart, with its founding partner the Pearson Foundation, are encouraging schools to participate in this year’s Read for the Record Campaign on Oct. 2, 2008. The campaign is designed to promote early learning and seeks to ensure that every child has the chance to begin kindergarten ready and able to succeed. This year, the Pearson Foundation, working with the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) national organization is providing an additional incentive to participation. Local PTAs registering and participating in reading Corduroy on October 2, are eligible to receive literature books valued at $1,000 for their school library or media center. The school in each state with the highest proportion of participation in the Read for the Record Campaign will receive this book donation. PTA and the Pearson Foundation will announce award recipients in November or early December. For more details on how you can participate, visit www.readfortherecord.org.
Three Florida Teachers Selected as Finalists for Presidential Award
Timothy Kenney, a math teacher at Mandarin Oaks Elementary, in Duval County, and two Brevard County elementary science teachers, Michelle Ferro, West Melbourne Elementary School, and Wendy Shelden, Ralph Williams, Jr. Elementary School, were selected as Florida finalists for the Pesidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST).
The PAEMST, the country’s highest honor for K-12 teachers of math and science, is administered by the National Science Foundation. It was enacted by Congress in 1983 and authorizes the president to bestow up to 108 awards each year on behalf of The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.
The finalist selected as the state recipient will receive a $10,000 award from the National Science Foundation, as well as a trip for two to Washington, D.C., for a weeklong series of recognition events and professional development opportunities. Award winners will be announced right before the trip, which occurs this spring.
Florida Association for Staff Development Leadership Conference
Sept. 22-24, 2008
Tradewinds Island Grand Resort
St. Pete Beach
The annual Florida Association for Staff Development (FASD) Leadership Conference will be held at the Tradewinds Island Grand Resort in St. Pete Beach Sept. 22 – 24, 2008. All educational personnel who have an interest in receiving, delivering or supporting high quality professional development are invited to join FASD members to participate in professional learning surrounding state of the art technology to support professional development, teacher and school leadership principles which align with high quality professional development, and support structures for new teacher induction programs. The conference will offer a blend of learning opportunities from experts as well as school-based practitioners in these, and other topics related to improved professional development. For more information, visit www.fasdonline.org.
2008 Florida Prevention Conference & Suicide Prevention Symposium
Symposium: Sept. 30 - Oct. 1; Conference: Oct. 1 – 3
Caribe Royale All-Suites Resort
The Governor’s Office of Suicide Prevention – along with BayCare Life Management – are proud to present the state’s fourth annual Suicide Prevention Symposium on Sept. 30 – Oct. 1, 2008 in Orlando, Florida. The symposium will include a wide variety of workshops designed to increase your knowledge, capacity and skills to respond early and effectively to suicidal ideation as well as effective strategies.
For more information, visit http://www.meetingmasterminds.com/2008_suicide_prevention_symposium_brochure.pdf.
2008 Annual Convention of the Florida School Counselor Association
Oct. 23-25, 2008
Renaissance Orlando Resort at SeaWorld
The most focused program in school counseling in Florida, the 2008 FSCA Convention will be delivered by thoughtful leaders from Florida and throughout the United States. The hottest and most relevant topics will be explored by leading industry advocates, state officials, counselor educators and, most importantly, professional school counselors!
For more information and to register, visit www.fla-schoolcounselor.org/convention2008.htm.
12th Annual Charter School Conference
Nov. 20-21, 2008
The 12th Annual Charter School Conference will be held November 20-21, at the DoubleTree Hotel at the Entrance to Universal Orlando. This year’s theme: “Charters: Providing Choice, Creating Change,” will enable those who are interested in the success of charter schools and the choice they give students in Florida an opportunity to learn firsthand about the importance of charter schools. For additional information, visit http://charterschoolconference.com/index.php.