News Slices:
Number of Florida Schools Earning ‘A’s Climbs To All Time High
Farm Bill To Help Implement Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Program
Next Generation Sunshine State Standards for Language Arts Available for Public Comment
Broward Professor Appointed U.N. Representative
Florida Leads National Effort To Boost College Graduation Rates
School for Advanced Studies Among Nation’s Best in Top High Schools List
Florida KidCare Announces 2009 “Act-Out for Health” Contest

Seeds of Success:
Mainland High School Takes Top Honors in International Science and Technology Fair
2009 Best Practice Awards Announced
Microsoft Certified School Graduates First Class of Information Technology Certified Students

Branching Out:
Florida Reading Association 47th Annual Conference
Florida School Counselor Association 2009 Annual Convention
Leadership of Mathematics & Science Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment Statewide Conference

 


June 26, 2009

Vol. 3, Issue 12


News Slices


Number of Florida Schools Earning ‘A’s Climbs To All Time High
Florida schools experienced their most successful year to date according to the 2009 school grades results released. Driven by a significant increase in the number of “A” grades, more than three quarters of all public schools are considered to be high performing (receiving either an “A” or “B”), the largest number yet since the inception of school grades. The results also indicate that the number of schools earning an “F” decreased to its lowest point in three years.

Of Florida's 2,954 graded public schools earning "A" through "F" grades this year:

  • 1,822 earned an "A" (62 percent), an increase of 237 schools compared to last year.
  • 495 earned a "B" (17 percent), a decrease of 47 schools compared to last year.
  • 420 earned a "C" (14 percent), a decrease of 145 schools compared to last year.
  • 173 earned a "D" (6 percent), an increase of 18 schools compared to last year.
  • 44 earned an "F" (1 percent), a decrease of 1 school compared to last year.


Farm Bill To Help Implement Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Program
The 2008 Farm Bill provides $1.2 billion in mandatory funding over the next 10 years to implement the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) nationwide. This federal funding is available to elementary schools with at least 50 percent or more of their students eligible for free and reduced-price meals. Florida’s participating elementary schools will receive between $50 - $70 per student for the 2009-2010 school year to offer students a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables as snacks, three to five times per week.

The Florida Department of Education’s Office of Food and Nutrition Management congratulates the schools who have been selected to participate in the United States Department of Agriculture FFVP. The schools can be found on the Food and Nutrition site at http://www.fldoe.org/FNM/ffvp/.


Next Generation Sunshine State Standards for Language Arts Available for Public Comment
The proposed revisions to Florida’s Language Arts standards are available for public comment at the Language Arts review Web site: http://etc.usf.edu/flstandards/index.html or http://tools.fcit.usf.edu/lasreview/.

To ensure that these standards are clear, concise, and accurate, the Office of Humanities in the Florida Department of Education invites you to rate each of the benchmarks and provide valuable feedback to the writers. Please submit your comments no later than Friday, June 26, 2009. If you would like to explore the resource materials from which these standards were derived, please review the Language Arts resources used by the framers and writers of the proposed standards at http://etc.usf.edu/flstandards/la/resources.html.


Broward Professor Appointed U.N. Representative
Dr. Barry Mowell, a professor of history and political science at Broward College’s A. Hugh Adams Central Campus in Davie, has been appointed by A Child is Missing, Inc.(ACIM) as its representative to the United Nations (UN) at the UN’s facilities in Geneva, Switzerland, and Vienna, Austria. A Child is Missing, Inc. is a Fort Lauderdale-based nationwide nonprofit organization that assists law enforcement agencies in the recovery of missing or abducted children.

Dr. Mowell serves as vice president of ACIM’s national board of directors and is the Republic of Latvia’s consul ad honorem to Florida. He is a member of the Florida Consular Corps and the National Association of Foreign Consuls in the United States.


Florida Leads National Effort To Boost College Graduation Rates
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and MDC, Inc., are giving more than $1 million to the state of Florida and Valencia Community College to expand groundbreaking remedial education programs that promise to boost the college completion rates of low-income students and students of color.

The grants will support innovative remedial programs developed by Valencia Community College through Achieving the Dream: Community Colleges Count, a multi-year national initiative that is aiming to dramatically boost college graduation rates among low-income students and students of color. The remedial education models pioneered by these colleges represent some of the most promising work in the country for boosting college completion rates among struggling students.


School for Advanced Studies Among Nation’s Best in Top High Schools List
Miami Dade College’s (MDC) School for Advanced Studies (SAS) was ranked 15th among public high schools in Newsweek magazine’s recent list of the nation’s top public high schools in America. Established during the 1988-89 school year as a small program located at MDC’s North Campus, SAS is a combined effort of MDC and Miami-Dade County Public Schools (MDCPS).

One hundred percent of SAS students graduate and continue their academic studies at colleges and universities in Florida, throughout the nation, or at top institutions abroad. Some have been accepted at such prestigious universities as Princeton, Cornell, Brown, NYU, Yale, the University of Chicago, Emory, Stanford, University of Edinburgh, and all the public universities in the state of Florida.


Florida KidCare Announces 2009 “Act-Out for Health” Contest
Florida KidCare announces the 2009 “Act-Out for Health” contest beginning Aug. 31, 2009. Last year, KidCare received more than 100 video public service announcements (PSA) and print ad entries from students across the state promoting affordable children’s health insurance available through Florida KidCare.

This year, Florida KidCare is seeking 30-second video PSA entries and billboard advertisements created by students ages 12 -18. This contest makes a great class project to add to your curriculum. Students can apply their creativity and skills learned in the classroom to a real world experience.

The winning statewide video PSA will be distributed via YouTube, the Florida Knowledge Network within the Florida Department of Education and Comcast Cable’s PSA program. The winning billboard design will be placed in the statewide winner’s hometown or the closest billboard location possible. Regional winners have the opportunity to win great prizes including gifts cards, cash awards and money for their school.

Contest rules and entry forms will be available this summer online at www.actout4health.org.


Seeds of Success

Mainland High School Takes Top Honors in International Science and Technology Fair
Mainland High School in Volusia County took top honors in the U.S. Department of Commerce's 12th Annual Internet Science and Technology Fair (ISTF). The winning project, “Suitable for a Disaster,” described wearable sensors linked with disaster response communications infrastructure. The ISTF is a program administered by the College of Engineering and Computer Science at the University of Central Florida in partnership with the United States Department of Commerce. To learn more, visit http://www.fldoe.org/SuccessStories/2009/06-16.asp.


2009 Best Practice Awards Announced
The 17th annual Best Practice Awards in the National School Lunch Program, School Breakfast Program, and Food Distribution Program encourages and rewards outstanding practices in schools and in School Food Service Authorities in the Southeast Region.

This year’s Best Practice Award categories included: Increasing Participation in School Lunch or Breakfast, Promoting a Healthy School Environment, School Breakfast Week Events, Customer Service, Food Safety, Creative Utilization of Commodities, and Working with Local Producers.

Congratulations to the following school districts for achieving this recognition:

  • Orange County - Increasing Participation in School Lunch or Breakfast
  • Pasco County - Customer Service


Microsoft Certified School Graduates First Class of Information Technology Certified Students
Dunbar High School’s Academy for Technology Excellence (ATE) program celebrated the graduation of its first four year graduates in May. Several ATE students were recognized for their academic achievements including Emmanuel Barreto, Ryan Gates, David Hoagland, Connor Metz, DezaRay Montero, and Evan Richardson, who received Information Technology (IT) Merit Award Scholarships from the CompTIA Education Foundation. In addition, top graduating senior Juan Quijada was honored for earning 19 IT computer certification credentials and achieving a weighted grade point average of 5.44.

The ATE program is showcased as the first Microsoft certified high school, and is also recognized by the CompTIA organization as a model school. The ATE program has had more than 1,200 students pass certification tests since testing started four years ago.


Branching Out


Florida Reading Association 47th Annual Conference
September 10-13, 2009
Shingle Creek Resort
Orlando, Fla.


The Florida Reading Association’s 47th Annual Conference, Reading: Rockets You to the Future will be held Sept. 10-13, 2009, at the Shingle Creek Resort in Orlando, Fla. Topic areas will span PreK-12 grade and will cover all aspects of literacy. Literacy leaders such as Dr. Janet Allen, Dr. Richard Gentry, Dr. Judith Irvin, and Dr. Dorothy Strickland will be presenting sessions. To learn more, visit www.flreads.org.


Florida School Counselor Association 2009 Annual Convention
October 29 - 31, 2009
Renaissance Orlando Resort at SeaWorld
Orlando, Fla.


The 2009 Florida School Counselor Association Convention will be delivered by leaders from Florida and throughout the United States. Topics in student academic advancement, career and vocational awareness, as well as counselor education and development will be explored by industry advocates, state officials, counselor educators and professional school counselors. To learn more or to reserve your hotel, visit http://www.fla-schoolcounselor.org/.


Leadership of Mathematics & Science Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment Statewide Conference
October 20-22, 2009
Schultz Center for Teaching and Learning
Orlando, Fla.


The Florida Center for Research in Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (FCR-STEM) has teamed up with the Duval County School District to host a three-day statewide conference for district instructional leaders, school principals/assistant principals, and district mathematics/science coordinators. The Leadership of Mathematics & Science Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment Statewide Conference will be held Oct. 20-22, 2009, in Jacksonville, Fla. To learn more, or to register, visit http://www.lsi.fsu.edu/.

 
 
 
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