April 30, 2010
Vol. 4, Issue 9
Save the Date! Third Annual Math and Science Day
All Florida educators are invited to celebrate the third annual Florida Math and Science Day on May 3, 2010. This year’s theme, “Severe Weather and Emergency Preparedness,” will engage students in the joys of math and science while learning about emergency weather conditions. Before May 3, teachers can access math and science benchmarks, lesson plans, instructional resources and activities, or even ask a question to a panel of math and science experts by visiting www.floridastandards.org/math_science_day.aspx. Educators can also enter to win a $50 gift card by submitting an essay about their students’ experiences on Math and Science Day. The essay should include the benchmarks taught, a brief summary of the lessons used, student responses, and any photos, videos or student work, and must be sent by May 10, 2010, to email@example.com. If you have questions about Florida Math and Science Day, contact Teresa Sweet, Mathematics Curriculum Specialist with the Florida Office of Math and Science at (850) 245-9032 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Virtual STEM Career Fair Benefits Students
On April 28, 2010, science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professionals shared their personal perspective to thousands of middle and high school students from throughout Florida on what it takes to be part of exciting careers and fields of study. The first-ever STEM Virtual Career Fair, hosted in partnership with Florida Virtual School (FLVS) and Elluminate Technology, gave students an opportunity to engage in a virtual classroom and hear an insider’s perspective on various career paths. Professionals from Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium, Scripps Florida, Entertainment Arts (EA), Florida Council on Economic Education, Florida Department of Law Enforcement, FLVS and award-winning composer Zain Effendi interacted with students via computer and answered their questions on what it takes to be successful in their jobs. The day’s presentations were recorded and are available to download at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2010-04-27.0914.M.4EECC3EF233B3158624EB2B446E253.vcr.
Serve to Preserve: Green Schools Awards Seeking Applications
In recognition of Earth Day and National Environmental Education Week, Gov. Crist recently announced that Serve to Preserve: Green Schools Award applications are now being accepted and can be submitted completely paperless. The award celebrates students, teachers, classrooms, schools and school districts for their efforts to create healthy, efficient and productive places for learning.
Eligible projects will be categorized in four themes:
- Green learning environments, including indoor and outdoor facilities
- Exemplary green curriculum or teacher professional development programs
- Green service learning projects
- Green policies or partnerships
Applications will be accepted through June 11, 2010, and will be reviewed during the summer. For further information and to complete a nomination application, visit www.MyFloridaClimate.com.
New Literacy League Book Club Selection Announced
The second book in the Literacy League Book Club is “Any Which Wall” by Laurel Snyder. The Atlanta-based author has penned children’s books “Penny Dreadful” and “Up and Down the Scratchy Mountains,” and two books of poems, “Daphne & Jim: a choose-your-own adventure biography in verse,” and “The Myth of the Simple Machines.” Each quarter, the Department’s Literacy League book club connects prominent authors with students through a question-and-answer session about a featured book.
To participate in the Literacy League, students are encouraged to read the featured book and then submit their questions in text or video format to LiteracyLeague@fldoe.org. Students may also send questions by mail to the Department of Education’s Communications Office at 325 W. Gaines Street, Suite 1524, Tallahassee FL, 32399-0400. Videos can be accepted in WMV, MPEG or Quick Time formats. The deadline to submit questions on “Any Which Wall” is May 13. For more information about the Department of Education’s Literacy League, visit www.fldoe.org/literacyleague.
The first Literacy League book club podcast is now available on iTunesU for downloading. In the podcast, author Julianna Baggott, writing under the pen name N.E. Bode, answers questions from middle school students about her book, “The Anybodies,” and details her background as an author. To view the first-ever Literacy League program, visit www.floridaitunesu.com.
Navigating Your Financial Future Workshops Available
Navigating your Financial Future (NyFF), the Florida Department of Education’s Office of Student Financial Assistance’s (OSFA) Financial Literacy program, has a wide variety of workshops that can assist students and families in managing their credit, budget, career, financial aid and more. The workshops are available online and some satisfy the credit counseling required for federal financial aid programs.
To see the selection of workshops, visit https://www.osfaffelp.org/WORKSHOPS/Home.aspx, and click on the “Get Started” arrow to select your school (if you are not yet enrolled in a postsecondary institution or your school is not listed, choose OSFA University). Each module can be completed in approximately 30 minutes and offers practical tips and information on the workshop topic. Workshops can also be conducted on middle school, high school or postsecondary campuses by a member of the OSFA outreach team. Contact OSFA at (800) 366-3475 ext. 7040 or visit https://www.osfaffelp.org/workshops/Default_Prevention_Rep.aspx to learn how NyFF can work for you.
High School Seniors Need To Submit A Florida Financial Aid Application by Graduation
To be eligible for the Bright Futures Scholarship, graduating seniors must file an Initial Student Florida Financial Aid Application by the time they graduate. The application is easy to complete and only takes approximately 15 minutes; no tax or financial information is required. Visit the Office of Student Financial Assistance (OSFA) website at www.floridastudentfinancialaid.org/SSFAD/home/uamain.htm and select “Apply Here.” Choose “Initial State Student Application” to begin. If you have questions, contact OSFA toll-free at (888) 827-2004 or email@example.com
Lake-Sumter Community College Students To Attend Aerospace Scholars Program
Students Jenni Larmore, Unika Cole and Ben Hair from Lake-Sumter Community College are three of 60 students from across the nation to be part of the National Community College Aerospace Scholars Program at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston on May 20 – 22, 2010. To qualify, the students completed four Web-based assignments during the school year and will apply what they learned on a team project to establish a fictional company interested in Mars exploration. For more information about the National Community College Aerospace Scholars Program, visit http://aerospacescholars.jsc.nasa.gov/NCAS/.
Miami-Dade College Student Named to Prestigious Scholar’s List
Eva B. Sevilla, a civil engineering Honors College student at the Miami-Dade College Wolfson Campus, has been named as one of 80 college students nationwide to be named as a 2010 Udall Scholar. Students were chosen based on their commitment to careers in the environment, health care or tribal public policy, leadership potential or academic achievement fields. Sevilla will receive a $5,000 scholarship to use for her junior and senior years and will be given an expense-paid trip to Tuscson, Ariz., this August to accept her award. She plans to pursue a career in sustainable design and energy efficiency research. For more information about the Udall Scholarship, visit www.udall.gov/OurPrograms/MKUScholarship/MKUScholarship.aspx.
Orange County School To Compete In National Rocketry Competition
Howard Middle School in Orange County will send a team of 10 students and their teachers to compete in the Team America Rocketry Challenge national finals on May 15, 2010, in The Plains, Va. The school is the only middle school in Florida to compete at the national level. Students were challenged to design and build a rocket that will climb 825 feet and stay aloft for between 40 and 45 seconds. Winning teams at the national level can earn a share of $60,000 in prize money, and the number one team wins a spot at the International Airshow in Farnsworth, England, to compete against winning teams from the United Kingdom and France. For more information about the Team American Rocketry Challenge, visit http://rocketcontest.org/.
Brevard Student Earns Third Highest Score on Cambridge Examination
Kaley Sansing, a senior at Rockledge High School in Brevard County, has earned a prestigious honor from the University of Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) in recognition of her outstanding performance in the June 2009 examination session. Sansing not only earned the third highest score in the world on the Cambridge International AS Level Examinations for English Language, she also earned the highest score in the United States. Sansing will receive a certificate from CIE and a gift certificate worth 50£ (approximately $78.00 U.S. dollars) from Amazon.co.uk. For more information about the CIE Examinations, visit www.cie.org.uk/.
Hillsborough County Student Wins National Essay Contest
David Walden, a student at Durant High School in Plant City, was the only winner from Florida and among 10 nationwide winners in the 12th Annual Future Farmers of America (FFA) Risk Management Strategies Writing Contest. Walden’s six-page essay focused on the challenges his family faces on its 10-acre citrus grove. His essay contrasted the realities of farming with the popular Farmville game on Facebook. As a nationwide winner, Walden will participate in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency/FFA Day in Washington, D.C., May 5 – 8, 2010. For more information about the FFA Risk Management Strategies Writing Contest, visit www.ffa.org/index.cfm?method=c_programs.RiskManagement.
Lee County School’s JROTC Scores in National Competition
South Fort Myers High School’s JROTC Marksmanship team placed eighth in the nation at the U.S. Army National Junior Air Rifle Championships earlier this month in Fort Benning, Ga. The team earned the right to compete at the national level by placing first in the state-level U.S. Army Junior Open Air Rifle tournament. For more information about the U.S. Army National Junior Air Rifle Championships, visit www.odcmp.com/3P/ArmyJrOpen.htm.
Valencia Community College Snags Student Success Grant
The Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) has selected Valencia Community College as a recipient of a Walmart Minority Student Success Award. The $100,000 grant will help Valencia build on demonstrated successes in enrolling, retaining and graduating first-generation minority college students. Valencia was one of only 30 minority-serving institutions to receive the grant, made possible by a $4.2 million grant to IHEP from the Walmart Foundation. For more information about the Walmart Minority Student Success Award, visit www.ihep.org/walmartminoritystudents.cfm.
Seminole State College President Receives Publisher’s Award
Dr. Ann E. McGee, president of Seminole State College of Florida, is the recipient of the Orlando Business Journal’s 2010 Publisher’s Award. The award honored Dr. McGee for her leadership in growing the college since taking over as president in 1996. During her tenure, the college has grown from one campus with a student population of 8,000 to three additional campuses and a student population of more than 12,000. The award is part of the newspaper’s Women Who Mean Business awards that recognizes individuals who have “made a lasting impression on Central Florida.” For more information about Dr. McGee and the Orlando Business Journal’s Publisher’s Award, visit http://orlando.bizjournals.com/orlando/stories/2010/04/12/focus6.html
2010 Florida Literacy Conference
May 5 – 7, 2010
South Seas Island Resort
The Florida Literacy Coalition will hold its 2010 Conference in Captiva on May 5 – 7, 2010, with the theme of Open Books Open Minds. Concurrent sessions will provide practitioners and volunteers with tools and resources that enhance literacy programs throughout the state. Dr. Brenda Dann-Messier, Assistant Secretary for Vocational and Adult Education for the U.S. Department of Education, will deliver the keynote address at the opening general session. For further information about the conference, visit www.floridaliteracy.org/floridaliteracyconference.html.
17th Annual Reading Conference
May 7 – 8, 2010
Melbourne Beach Crowne Plaza
“Ride the Reading Wave” is the theme for the 17th Annual Reading Conference sponsored by the Secondary Reading Council of Florida. The conference will be held May 7 – 8, 2010, in Indialantic and will focus on making the connection between reading and writing. Registration and conference information can be found at http://www.srcfl.org/; registration is also available on site. If you have questions or need further information, contact Toniamae Lopez-Dykes at firstname.lastname@example.org or (321) 289-1852.
Working on Gifted Issues Annual Institute
June 10 – 11, 2010
World Golf Village
St. Augustine, Fla.
The annual Working on Gifted Issues will be held June 10 – 11, 2010, at the World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Fla. Dr. Mary Slade, professor of Exceptional Education at James Madison University, will deliver the keynote address, “Best Practices in Gifted Education,” that focuses on implementing curriculum standards for gifted learners. Additionally, workshops will be available on topics related to services for students who are gifted. For more information about the Institute, visit http://www.unfwogi.com/events.html or contact Dr. Christine Weber at email@example.com.
Workshop for Teachers of the Gifted
June 12, 2010
Pancetti Bay Middle School
St. Augustine, Fla.
The annual Workshop for Teachers of the Gifted will be held June 12, 2010, at Pancetti Middle School in St. Augustine, Fla. The workshop will focus on sharing information for teachers of the gifted, particularly those new to the field. Jodi O’Meara, ESE Curriculum Specialist and Gifted Endorsement Instructor in Manatee County, is the keynote speaker. The workshop is free of charge for participants and is co-sponsored by the Florida Department of Education and the Working on Gifted Issues project. Pre-registration by June 4, 2010, is required. Contact Donnajo Smith with the Department at (850) 245-0937 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or for assistance with pre-registration. More information about the workshop can be found at www.unfwogi.com/giftedworkshop.html.
Florida School Counselor Association Summer Academy
June 25 – 27, 2010
The Renaissance Resort at World Golf Village
St. Augustine, Fla.
“School Counselors: Preparing for a New Decade” is the theme for this year’s Florida School Counselor Association Summer Academy. The Academy will provide relevant and quality professional development for school counselors on topics that include data, accountability, the electronic Personal Education Planner (e-PEP) and more. For more information about the conference, visit www.fla-schoolcounselor.org/2010Academy/.
Interdisciplinary Center for Ongoing Research/Education (ICORE) Summer Institute
July 11 – 23, 2010
University of Florida
The University of Florida Center for Precollegiate Education and Training is now accepting applications for an exciting new professional development opportunity for Florida high school teachers. The Interdisciplinary Center for Ongoing Research/Education (ICORE) partnership aims to engage teachers in hands-on research with scientists to identify, understand and manage emerging pathogens, incorporate the ideas into classroom-ready modules, and present the results of their experiences to colleagues at professional meetings. There is no registration fee, however seats are limited. For further information, visit www.cpet.ufl.edu/ICORE/default.html or contact Julie Bokor at email@example.com or (352) 392-2310.