2011 Teacher of the Year Named
Cheryl Conley, a fourth grade teacher at Osceola Magnet Elementary School in Indian River County, has been named the 2011 Florida Department of Education/Macy’s Teacher of the Year. Conley was chosen from among five state finalists in recognition of her tremendous dedication to her students, her goal-oriented teaching style, and her proven ability to inspire students beyond their own expectations. She will serve for one year as the Christa McAuliffe Ambassador for Education, visiting schools throughout the state to share information about educational opportunities and challenges in Florida.
Conley received a cash prize of $10,000 from Macy's, a customized trophy and an all-expenses paid trip to New York City for the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade. Macy's also awarded each of the other four finalists — Kelly Burnette, Yulee High School, Nassau County; Zachary Champagne, Mandarin Oaks Elementary School, Duval County; Cristine O’Hara, Palmetto Middle School, Miami-Dade County; and Allan Phipps, South Plantation High School, Broward County — a $5,000 check, a $500 Macy's gift card and $1,000 to their respective schools to be used toward educational programs.
For more information about the 2011 Florida Department of Education/Macy’s Teacher of the Year, visit www.fldoe.org/profdev/yeartch.asp.
National Honor Bestowed on State Board of Education Chairman
Florida State Board of Education Chairman T. Willard Fair has been named the recipient of the 2010 Distinguished Service Award by the National Association of State Boards of Education (NASBE). The award is given annually to select state board of education members from throughout the country in recognition of their outstanding service to public education. Fair will receive the honor during the NASBE conference in Salt Lake City, UT in October. For more information about NASBE, visit www.nasbe.org.
2010 FCAT Scores Highlight Increases in Academic Achievement
The 2010 Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) results for grades four through 11 Reading, Math, Science and Writing have been announced and the results show increases in the percent of students scoring proficient and above in almost every middle and high school grade level in reading and mathematics. Science achievement also showed positive momentum with gains in all tested grade levels and students continue to score well in writing.
Highlights of the 2010 FCAT results include:
For more information about this year’s FCAT results, visit http://fcat.fldoe.org/mediapacket/2010/
Florida College System Tops National Rankings
For the eighth year in a row, The Florida College System ranks among the top producers of associate degrees in the nation according to Community College Week’s annual Top 10 report. The report, conducted using data for the 2008-09 academic year from the National Center for Education Statistics, shows that Florida colleges lead America’s more than 1,200 community colleges in a range of degree categories.
Highlights of the report include:
Through an unwavering commitment to an open-door policy, Florida colleges awarded 52,439 associate degrees in 2008-09. The colleges are currently the first choice of more than 900,000 students looking for access to postsecondary opportunities that is affordable and close to home. To view Community College Week’s Top 10 report for a list of Florida institutions and their national rankings, visit http://www.ccweek.com/news/templates/template.aspx?articleid=1918&zoneid=7. For more information about The Florida College System, visit www.fldoe.org/cc/.
New Content Available on iTunes U
The Florida Department of Education has partnered with The Florida Channel to provide new civics content that will enable students and teachers around the world to a greater array of instructional tools and resources. The new content, including Historic Markers and Florida Facts, Florida Portraits, Florida’s Attic, Great Floridians, 60 Second Civics and Florida Symbols, utilizes The Florida Channel’s extensive library of public affairs programs and educational content to engage students in the workings of Florida government. To learn more or to download content from Florida on iTunes U, visit www.floridaitunesu.com.
Florida Department of Education Establishes New FCAT Website
A new website related to the delays in reporting this year’s Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) results has been launched by the Florida Department of Education. The website hosts a variety of information resources on the issue including:
Due to technical issues with Pearson’s database technology, extra time was needed this year to ensure each individual student’s test results matched up perfectly with their demographic information. These technology issues are completely separate from the scoring process, and detailed analyses by the Department, Pearson, and a third party testing expert, The Buros Institute, confirm that this year’s results are both accurate and reliable. To access the website and learn more about the FCAT, visit www.fldoe.org/fcat.asp.
Florida Joins Partnership To Create Common Assessment System
Florida is one of 26 states joining together to create the Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) and, on behalf of the partnership, submitted an application to the U.S. Department of Education for the development of common assessments aligned to common standards for what students should learn at each grade level. The proposed assessment system will be computer based and students will take the assessment at key times throughout the school year, closer to when they learn the material. Teachers and administrators will also be able to chart student progress toward achieving the standards and adjust instructional strategies or provide extra support to students who need it. The assessments will allow for a common metric for measuring the performance of students based on standards that mean the same from one state to another. For more information about PARCC, visit www.fldoe.org/parcc.
Final Space Shuttle Flight An Opportunity for School Districts
School districts across Florida can now participate in an experiment design competition that allows students at middle and high school levels to fly a real experiment aboard the last scheduled space shuttle flight. The National Center for Earth and Space Science Education, in partnership with American Aerospace Advisors, launched the new Student Spaceflight Experiments Program to foster interest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) careers in hopes of reaching thousands of students, schools and school districts, teachers and their families in this historic opportunity.
Visit the program website at http://ssep.ncesse.org for comprehensive information on program objectives, how to customize for community needs and how to participate. Districts interested in participating should explore the opportunity now since the program will need to be implemented at the beginning of the academic year. Dr. Jeff Goldstein, Center Director for the National Center for Earth and Space Education, is available by phone or by telecom at (301) 395-0770 for district science and technology education staff. Todd Clark with the Florida Department of Education’s Bureau of Curriculum and Instruction is also available to provide assistance at (850) 245-0423 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Avery Dennison Give Back To Schools Program
The Avery Dennison company is offering an opportunity for schools to win a truckload of Avery-brand school supplies valued at approximately $10,000. The Give Back to Schools donation program gives students, families and school supporters age 18 or older the chance to vote for their K-8 school through Aug. 31, 2010. At the conclusion of the contest, 10 schools with the highest number of votes will win the school supplies. Log on to www.AveryDennisonGiveBacktoSchools.com for more information and to cast your vote.
Seeds of Success