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2016ASOrffMusic education is strong and thriving in Lake County where an elementary school student was accepted for participation in one of two All-State elementary music ensembles. Shelby Lenz attends Villages Elementary of Lady Lake and performed with the FMEA All-State Elementary Orff Ensemble in Tampa, January 15, 2016 at the Tampa Convention Center. Almost 800 students from around the state auditioned for two ensembles and Shelby was the only student accepted from Lake County! Congratulations, Shelby! Her teacher, Rosemary Pilonero, is a member of the Florida Music Educators Association and President-Elect of the Florida Elementary Music Educators Association.

The inaugural performance of the first All-State Orff Ensemble in the nation took place at the Tampa Convention Center January 15, 2016 at 1:30 PM. This new ensemble provides opportunities for elementary musicians to showcase standards-based music skills and techniques – such as instrumental performance, movement/dance, improvisation, and singing – all elements of the principles of Orff Schulwerk. Developed by famed composers Carl Orff and Gunild Keetman, Orff Schulwerk is an approach to music teaching and learning based on things children like to do: sing, chant rhymes, clap, dance, and play instruments. A traditional Orff Ensemble features young musicians singing, chanting, dancing, improvising, and playing instruments such as recorders and student-sized melodic percussion instruments, known as Orff instruments, designed by Carl Orff. FEMEA Immediate Past President, Julie Hebert, who championed the development of this new ensemble, said, “With so many of Florida’s elementary music educators using the Orff-Schulwerk approach to teach music, it seems fitting that we are the first state in the nation to offer an All-State Orff Ensemble for students. FEMEA is beyond thrilled to provide this new performance opportunity for Florida’s outstanding young musicians.”

The 2016 FMEA All-State Orff Ensemble was directed by Master Orff Clinicians, Sandy Lantz and Gretchen Wahlberg from Ft. Myers, Florida. Lisa Hewitt, All-State Orff Ensemble Coordinator, pointed out that “this experience will be enriching for students, teachers and parents. The Orff process engages children in guiding them toward creating music on their own. The concert showcased the creativity as well as the musical talent of the students selected.”

FEMEA President, Marie Radloff, said, “The artistry these students have achieved in January was truly remarkable, and their All-State experience will be treasured for the rest of their lives.”

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Students from 22 public and private schools in Lake County will compete next week in the 2015 Lake County Spelling Bee.

The local competition is part of the 2015 Scripps National Spelling Bee. Every year, tens of thousands of schools enroll in the program. During the fall and winter they conduct spelling bee programs at the classroom, grade and/or school level, and send their spelling champions to the next level of competition as designated by their local spelling bee sponsors.

In Lake, first-place winners from each participating school will compete in the county spelling bee, which is being coordinated by Lake County Schools’ Academic Services Unit in partnership with The Orlando Sentinel. The Golden Triangle Kiwanis in partnership with the Educational Foundation of Lake County will present the winner with a $100 check, and the runner-up will receive a $50 check.

The event is scheduled for 10 a.m. Friday, Feb. 27, at the Eustis Community Center, 601 Northshore Drive, Eustis FL.

Participating schools are listed below:

Cecil E. Gray Middle             Imagine South Lake Charter          Seminole Springs Elementary
Christian Home and Bible     Lake Preparatory                           St. Paul’s Catholic
Clermont Elementary            Lost Lake Elementary                    Tavares Middle
East Ridge Middle                 Minneola Elementary Charter        Umatilla Middle
Eustis Elementary                 Montverde Academy                      Villages Elementary
Eustis Heights Elementary    Mount Dora Middle                         Windy Hill Middle
Eustis Middle                        Oak Park Middle
Groveland Elementary          Sawgrass Bay Elementary

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Media

The Villages Elementary, Oak Park Middle and Tavares High School were recognized this week for returning the highest percentage of library card registration forms to the Lake County Library System late last year.

Plaques were presented to the principals of each school at a meeting of all Lake County principals on Tuesday, Jan. 20. The presentation brought to a close a district-wide contest that kicked off last fall. Lake County Schools and the Lake County Library System teamed up to ensure all students had an opportunity to receive a library card, which gives them access to free computer use, free Wi-Fi, inexpensive copiers, online databases and e-books, and summer and after-school activities.

Each school in the district received library card registration forms. The forms were sent home with the students, who were asked to return the forms by Nov. 21. A free library card was sent to every student who signed up, and the elementary, middle and high schools with the highest percentage of forms returned by the deadline received a plaque.

Students at The Villages Elementary returned 78 percent of their forms, students at Oak Park Middle returned 18 percent, and students at Tavares High returned 38 percent.

The contest brought in more than 8,000 registration applications, and more than 1,000 students reported that they already had library cards.

“That’s roughly 20 percent of the entire student body,’’ said Paul Alford, Library Services Division Manager. “That’s an awesome start to what we hope will be a very successful partnership.”

Alford asked principals to encourage students, staff and faculty to use the Lake County Library System, which includes nine member libraries and six branch libraries. “We have resources and opportunities for all, and the more teachers are aware of what’s available, the better they’ll be able to guide and direct students in after-school opportunities,’’ he said. “If you folks have not used a public library in a while, we encourage you to come and see what’s going on locally.”

Learn more about the Lake County Library System at http://www.mylakelibrary.org.

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The entire Lake County community is invited to choose between two proposed calendar options for the 2015-2016 school year through an online poll at http://www.lake.k12.fl.us/calendarvote.

Parents, students, employees and community residents have until Tuesday, Jan. 13, to select an option. A summary of the options is shown below.

OPTION 1:
• School starts Monday, Aug. 24, 2015.
• Five days off around Thanksgiving – Nov. 23-27, 2015.
• Spring Break from March 21-25, 2016.
• School ends Thursday, June 9, 2016.

OPTION 2:
• School starts Monday, Aug. 24, 2015.
• Three days off around Thanksgiving – Nov. 25-27, 2015.
• Spring Break from March 21-25, 2016.
• School ends Tuesday, June 7, 2016.

Visit http://www.lake.k12.fl.us/calendarvote to view each option in detail.

The online poll will close on Tuesday, January 13.

The results of the poll will be forwarded to the Lake County School Board. The Board is expected to consider the 2015-2016 school calendar options at its meeting on Monday, January 26.

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Watch the premiere of the Home-School Connection at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 7.

The Home-School ConnectionLake County Schools and Lakefront TV are teaming up to help parents and families of school children. The Home-School Connection is a unique new educational show where public school administrators and teachers discuss informative topics about the school system, classes, programs and ways you can help from home. Students also present school news and events from around the area.

The Home-School Connection is an open community forum about our schools. You are invited to e-mail a question or suggest a topic for a future show. Some questions will be answered on the show, so keep watching.

To send a message to the Home-School Connection email schools@lakefronttv.com.

Watch Lakefront TV on Comcast channel 22, Brighthouse channel 199 and Florida Cable channel 4.

TheHomeSchoolFlier

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Beginning tonight and through the weekend, the school district’s new online gradebook, Skyward Family Access, will be unavailable as data on the site is updated.

Parents and guardians of students who attend Lake County Schools are encouraged to create a Family Access account. Through the Family Access portal, parents and guardians will have the ability to view their child’s grades, attendance and other data.

The Family Access portal is replacing the district’s older online gradebook, eSembler. For parents that had an eSembler account last school year, many received an email on Sept. 17 from do.not.reply@lake.k12.fl.us with a link to begin the process of setting up a Family Access account. Step-by-step directions on setting up a Family Access account are available online at http://www.lake.k12.fl.us/familyaccess.

For parents and guardians who did not receive an email or did not previously have an eSembler account, they will need to print out a Family Access Enrollment Form. The form is available online at http://www.lake.k12.fl.us/familyaccess. Only one email address per form is permitted. Parents and guardians will have to fill out a separate form for each email address.

Due to security concerns, to complete the form parents and guardians are required to either:

    • Bring the form and ID to the school and sign the form in front of someone at the school; OR
    • Fill out the form; have it notarized by a public notary; and return the form to the school.

After returning the form, the school will verify the information. Once the parent account is created, the district will send an email with sign-in instructions to the parent automatically.

For more information, log on to http://www.lake.k12.fl.us/familyaccess.

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After a successful pilot at Eustis High School, the Lake County School District is launching its new online gradebook, Skyward Family Access.

Family Access PortalParents and guardians of students who attend Lake County Schools are encouraged to create a Family Access account. Through the Family Access portal, parents and guardians will have the ability to view their child’s grades, attendance and other data.

The Family Access portal is replacing the district’s older online gradebook, eSembler. For parents that had an eSembler account last school year, they will be receiving an email on Wednesday from do.not.reply@lake.k12.fl.us with a link to begin the process of setting up a Family Access account.

Parents and guardians will use their current eSembler user ID (email address) as their username for Family Access. Step-by-step directions on setting up a Family Access account are available online at www.lake.k12.fl.us/familyaccess.

For parents and guardians who did not receive an email or did not previously have an eSembler account, they will need to print out a Family Access Enrollment Form. The form is available online at www.lake.k12.fl.us/familyaccess. Only one email address per form is permitted. Parents and guardians will have to fill out a separate form for each email address.

Due to security concerns, to complete the form parents and guardians are required to either:

    • Bring the form and ID to the school and sign the form in front of someone at the school; OR
    • Fill out the form; have it notarized by a public notary; and return the form to the school.

After returning the form, the school will verify the information. Once the parent account is created, the district will send an email with sign-in instructions to the parent automatically.

 

For more information, log on to www.lake.k12.fl.us/familyaccess.

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