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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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logosA Lake County students showed off their creativity and knowledge at the recent Lake County History Fair at Windy Hill Middle School.

Twelve judges reviewed 33 projects from students representing six middle schools in Lake County. More than 120 people attended the fair and showed their support.

Winners in each category are listed below. The top two projects form each category will represent Lake County at the State History Fair May 3-5 in Tallahassee.

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Students will compete next week in the first Lake County History Fair, part of the annual National History Day competition.

nhd_logoEach year, students around Florida participate in history fairs in their school districts to demonstrate their understanding of history as it relates to a theme. This year’s theme is “Leadership and Legacy in History.” Students use their historical inquiry and analysis skills to create an authentic and creative project. By participating in the history fair students will develop interviewing skills and confidence, as well as twenty-first century skills needed for the workplace.

The public is invited to attend the Lake County History Fair, sponsored by the district’s Academic Services Unit, on Saturday, March 21, 2015. Projects will be on display for the public to view from 4:30 p.m. – 5:15 p.m. at Windy Hill Middle School cafeteria. The awards ceremony will follow from 5:15 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. in the cafeteria at Windy Hill Middle School.

Schools conducted history fairs on their campuses and selected top candidates to represent their schools at the district level in the following categories: Exhibit, Historical Paper, Documentary, Website and Performance. Projects will be judged by a panel the morning of the fair.

Students who win the county fair will move on to the Florida State History Fair in Tallahassee on May 3-5, 2015.

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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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Windy Hill Middle

Windy Hill Middle

William P. Roberts of Windy Hill Middle School is one of three finalists for Florida’s 2015 Assistant Principal of the Year, state Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart announced today.

The Outstanding Assistant Principal Achievement Award (Assistant Principal of the Year) along with the state’s Principal Achievement Award for Outstanding Leadership (Principal of the Year) recognize school administrators for their exceptional contributions to their schools and communities.

“We are so excited for Mr. Roberts,’’ Lake County Schools Superintendent Susan Moxley said. “He is a strong motivator for students and teachers at Windy Hill. His leadership, along with that of Principal Amy Cockcroft, is bringing innovation and creativity to our students, ensuring that each one has an opportunity to reach his or her full potential. We are very fortunate to have him.”

Other finalists for Assistant Principal of the Year are:

  • Dustin Sums, Flagler Palm Coast High School, Flagler County School District
  • Nigel Pillay, Pedro Menendez High School, St. Johns County School District

Finalists for Principal of the Year are:

  • Peter James McCabe, Clay High School, Clay County School District
  • Dr. Angela Murphy-Osborne, Palmetto Elementary School, Orange County School District
  • Michael Thorpe, Milton High School, Santa Rosa County School District

The state’s top administrators will be named in a ceremony at the Commissioner’s Summit for Principals on Feb. 23. The recipient of the 2015 Principal of the Year will be awarded a cash prize of $5,000 and an exclusive overnight stay at the Cinderella Castle Suite inside the Magic Kingdom Park along with theme park admission for the winner and his or her guests provided by Disney Youth Programs. The Assistant Principal of the Year receives a cash prize of $2,500 and a weekend resort stay at the Walt Disney World Resort and theme park admission also courtesy of Disney Youth Programs.

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A caravan of officials from Lake County Schools and the Educational Foundation of Lake County brought some exciting news to three schools this week as finalists for Lake County Teacher of the Year were announced.

The “prize patrol” included Lake County Schools Superintendent Dr. Susan Moxley; School Board members Rosanne Brandeburg and Marc Dodd; Educational Foundation Executive Director Carman Cullen, and Educational Foundation Board members Bill Giffing and Mike Stone, among many others. The group delivered the news face-to-face to the candidates: Justin Crouch at Umatilla High School, Julie Forgie at Windy Hill Middle School and Melissa Meadows at Treadway Elementary School.

Three judges will interview with the finalists before making a final choice. Lake County Schools’ Teacher of the Year will be announced at a celebration dinner presented by the Educational Foundation of Lake County on Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015. Tickets can be reserved by calling (352) 326-1265.

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Justin Crouch began his Florida teaching career four years ago as a social studies teacher at Umatilla High School. He continues in that role and serves as the department chair, mentoring other teachers and facilitating weekly Professional Development meetings. He works with a wide range of students, from those scoring at lower reading levels to those in his upper level Advanced Placement Macroeconomics course and uses innovative ways to help all of them achieve. He wrote lesson plans that are being used for a unit in Economics and AP Macroeconomics throughout Lake County. It centers on a chapter in Terry Anderson and Donald Leal’s book Free Market Environmentalism and is focused on the effects of the privatization of public parks. He was the 2013-14 Rookie teacher of the Year for Umatilla High and is the 2014-15 Social Studies Teacher of the Year for Umatilla High. “Umatilla High has provided, and continues to provide, great opportunities for me to lead and learn in my profession,” he wrote in his application. “I am afforded the opportunity to work with a very close community that deeply cares about the success of their students.”

 

Julie Forgie

Julie Forgie has been teaching 11 years and currently is a teacher for students with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Intellectual Disabilities, a position she has held for five years at Windy Hill Middle School. Students often enter her classroom not talking or exhibiting aggressive behaviors. She uses student behavior formative data to teach the students, drive behavior changes and enhance parent communication and involvement. In her application, she described a non-verbal student who arrived displaying aggressive behavior and exhibiting echolalia, the involuntary repetition of words or phrases spoken by others. She taught him to make simple verbal requests, to say “hello” when entering the classroom and the have “nice hands” so he could be a productive citizen. “Every student deserves to learn,’’ she wrote. “My students have moderate to severe Autism. … I have been hit, bit, punched and kicked countless times. Regular education teachers tell me I’m crazy to do this work but I return every day and give students the love and attention they deserve…. No matter what is thrown at us, teachers must have the passion and patience to push through.” Forgie is a coach with Special Olympics of Lake County, an advisor for Best Buddies of Central Florida – Windy Hill Chapter, former Rookie Teacher of the Year (2007-08), and she created the countywide Edmodo page for Autism Spectrum Disorder teachers.

Melissa Meadows

Melissa Meadows began teaching seven years ago. Today, she teaches a second grade inclusion classroom with 15 students, five of whom are deemed “exceptional” because learning disabilities, Autism, emotional and behavioral disorders and other issues. Most of her students at Treadway Elementary come to her with reading deficiencies as well. She has helped them make significant gains academically and behaviorally. In her application, she describes one student who spent the majority of his time last year in the office or suspended. She requested the student be placed in her classroom so she could help him. “He was defiant, disruptive and refused to complete any work,’’ she wrote. “After implementing a behavior management plan, he is currently on a positive track. … He shows so much potential now, and I am confident that he will continue to amaze me with his performance. [He] finally enjoys school and is excited to learn every day.” Meadows has organized workshops that focus on courses for Exceptional Student Education (ESE) and technology, she played a large role in the incorporation of new standards into second grade mathematics, and she won a first place award at the Jim Harbin Film Festival for the 2014 public service video, “Bullying: Shout it Out.”

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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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