Archive for the ‘Communications’ Category

We_Want_HearAs the nation wraps up the observance of Black History Month, Lake County Schools is seeking to capture details of an important part of our community’s history – the racial integration of our schools. We have copies of news articles that suggest Eustis High School was the first to integrate in 1965, and we are reaching out to former students who say they were the first African Americans to integrate that school. We are also consulting School Board meeting minutes.

If you were a student or the parent of a student in Lake County in 1965, and you have memories or memorabilia from that time, we want to hear from you. We welcome copies of any photos or documents that discuss or illustrate this transitional period in our district. We also welcome your own personal recollections of that time.

Please send copies and comments to Communications Officer Sherri Owens at owenss@lake.k12.fl.us. All items must be received by Wednesday, March 9.


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NewsRe001Sawgrass Bay Elementary School has implemented the new “Leader Riders” program. The school’s Lighthouse Team, a component of The Leader in Me program, boards eight buses on Mondays and Thursdays. Each team is comprised of two Sawgrass Bay staff members. These volunteer teachers and administrators talk and interact with students riding the bus and meet and greet the parents at the bus stops.

This voluntary program is an outreach effort that supports the school’s vision to “Build Leaders for Life, One Student at the Time.”

Sawgrass Bay Elementary adopted The Leader in Me as the culture building program that supports the implementation of Personalized Learning.  Through the program, all staff members and students infuse Stephen Covey’s, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, into all aspects of the school day.  School leaders believe that in order for students to take ownership of their learning it is essential that they are equipped with the necessary leadership skills to do so.

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2242675_origCypress Ridge Elementary School (CRES) was represented by four teams at the Vex IQ Robotics State Championship that was held Sunday, February 14, 2016, at the State Fairgrounds in Tampa, FL.  CRES took home three awards:  the Sportsmanship Award (VexMasters), STEM Research (Tombstones), and Design Notebook (R2DTools).  All six of the CRES after-school Robotics Club teams are ranked in the top 15 for computer programming among elementary schools in the state of Florida.  These students have worked diligently to design, program, continuously redesign and reprogram their robots to successfully perform tasks both remotely and autonomously.
Their technology teacher and Robotics Club sponsor, Kristin Willis, along with dedicated parents will be traveling with the R2DTools to the Vex IQ World Championship in Louisville, KY, April 20-23 as their state award was a qualifier for this competition.

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NHDLake County middle school and high school students are gearing up for the second annual National History Day competition. This competition allows students to create projects on historical topics in the categories of exhibit, paper, documentary, performance, or website.

Students from every middle school and four of the high schools (East Ridge, Eustis, Lake Minneola, and South Lake) will come together on March 5, 2016, at Windy Hill Middle School to be judged on their projects in the morning. In the afternoon, starting at 5:00 p.m. there will be an Open House and the awards ceremony will follow at 5:30 p.m.

Each year there is a different National History Day theme that students use as a guide for creating their projects. Last year’s theme was Leadership and Legacy. This year’s theme will be Exploration, Encounter, and Exchange. Students will be challenged to think, research, and write like historians while exploring human history and its effects on our society today.

The top two winners in each category will be moving on to the state competition, held in Tallahassee, May 1-3, 2016.

For more information or to see how you can sponsor or help with this event, contact Nicole DeLuca, Social Studies Program Specialist, at delucan@lake.k12.fl.us or 352-253-6874.

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Mack JacksonThe second episode of Clermont teen Benjamin Mack-Jackson’s video documentary showcasing the stories of World War II veterans is now airing on Lake Sumter Television.

The Lake County Virtual School eighth grader has conducted video interviews using his own equipment as part of WWII Veterans History Project. He plans to interview as many WWII veterans as possible and then will interview veterans’ family members who can share their loved ones’ history.

The first episode began airing last month, and the new episode will air throughout February on LSTV (Comcast Channel 13, Brighthouse Channel 498, and Florida Cable 4) at the following times: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 7 a.m. and 5 p.m.; Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., Saturdays at 9 a.m. and 7 p.m.

Mack-Jackson has partnered with Leesburg marketing and video production agency Red Apples Media to transform his video library of testimonials into 30-minute documentaries. Red Apples Media also provided Mack-Jackson with a production equipment budget to help enhance the quality of his interviews.

Parady Financial Group of the Villages partially underwrote the production costs associated with the project.

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Rhonda_Image1Eustis Heights Elementary School Principal Rhonda Hunt has been named Florida’s Principal of the Year!

The state’s top administrators were announced yesterday in a ceremony at the Commissioner’s Summit for Principals.

Hunt has been a principal for 10 years, during which time she has been involved in a new school opening, establishing parent-teacher organizations, building mentoring programs and drafting grant applications that have benefited her students. She is described as an exemplary instructional leader and has been commended for empowering her teachers to be leaders. Under her leadership, Eustis Heights has improved its school grade from an F to a C (based on 2014-15 simulated school grades).

The other finalists in the Principal category were Tamie Stewart of Parkside Elementary in Collier County and Steven Royce of Tara Elementary in Manatee County.

“What Rhonda Hunt has done at Eustis Heights is nothing short of outstanding,” said Susan Moxley, Ed. D., superintendent of Lake County Schools. “She has a way of inspiring and bringing out the best in her students, faculty and staff. Parents and the community as a whole have supported her efforts. Together, they have done what’s best for students and produced tremendous results. To say Lake County Schools is proud to have her on our team is an understatement. She represents the best of Lake County Schools and we are excited that she is being recognized statewide for her success.”

Chad Frazier, assistant principal at Eustis Heights, was a finalist for the state’s Assistant Principal of the Year award along with Kahlil Ortiz of Dommerich Elementary in Maitland. Anne Bieber, assistant principal at Vero Beach High School, received that honor.

Frazier’s colleagues expressed an appreciation for his passion for learning and willingness to take on challenges toward an identified goal, as well as his dedication to creating innovative solutions. In just one year, he has already made an impact on Eustis Heights. With the support of his principal and through collaboration with school faculty, Frazier was able to reduce truancy by 50 percent during the 2014-15 school year.

“Mrs. Hunt and Mr. Frazier are a great team,” Dr. Moxley said. “We are thrilled for both of them.”

As recipient of the 2016 Principal of the Year award, Hunt will receive a cash prize of $5,000 and $1,000 for her school. The 2016 Assistant Principal of the Year will receive a cash prize of $2,500 and $500 for the school.

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fsa logoThe first round of spring Florida Standards Assessments (FSA) begins in a few weeks with students in grades 4-7 taking the English Language Arts paper-based writing exam on March 1. Students in grades 8-10 will take the computer-based exam one day between Feb. 29 and March 11.  For specific testing dates at your student’s school, please visit the school web site or contact your child’s school testing coordinator.

To learn more about the FSA or to access practice tests for your student, please visit the FSA Portal at http://www.fsassessments.org/.  Google Chrome is the preferred browser.

If you have questions about the FSA, email Lake County Schools atFSAInfo@lake.k12.fl.us

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