Bootcamp Photo 2 Bootcamp Photo 3

Over 160 incoming 9th graders attended Umatilla High School’s First Annual Freshman Bootcamp hosted on August 1st. There was excitement in the air as the students arrived on campus. The day kicked off with a welcome from the UHS Administration. The students then attended multiple breakout sessions which all focused on student success. There was an introduction to Personalized Learning and also emphasis on having a Growth Mindset. Time was even set aside for the incoming freshman to hear “If I only knew…my freshman year”, from upper classmen students, in hopes that they will take advice from their peers. The day concluded with a scavenger hunt across campus where students could explore the school and learn along the way. Devoted school personnel came in on their own time to host this event. We believe the successful turnout will prepare the incoming Class of 2020 for a GREAT school year!


LCS Townhall_Superintendent Search2

With her contract set to expire in June 2017, Superintendent Susan Moxley, Ed.D., recently suggested the Lake County School Board begin discussions about the search for the district’s next leader. A committee has been formed and a consulting company has been identified to help lead the search. Both are interested in hearing from the public. You have three opportunities to participate:

  • Monday, Aug. 15, 6 p.m. at Eustis High School, 1300 E. Washington Ave., Eustis
  • Tuesday, Aug. 16, 6 p.m. at East Ridge High School, 13322 Excalibur Road, Clermont
  • Thursday, Aug. 18, 6 p.m. at Leesburg High School, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way, Leesburg

And remember to take the online survey to let the committee know which characteristics you think are most important in the selection of our next superintendent.

The survey is on the district website, www.lake.k12.fl.us,  under the “Superintendent Search” tab.


EHES Summer School 072816

Summer School at Eustis Heights Elementary School got a big boost from the Eustis Elks Lodge #1578.   The Lodge applied for and received a $2,500 grant from the National Elks Foundation to purchase books for the students.   The goal was to help the students improve their reading skills and to encourage their love for reading.   Each Thursday became a special day for the students, as well as the Mentors/Volunteers from the Lodge who went to the school to introduce the “book of the week.” After the reading session, all the students were given the book to take home.   Each week Gabe Stewart and his therapy dog Daisy were also a big hit with the students who had an opportunity to meet and read with Daisy.   An author, Paula Gilgen, read and talked about her book C.A.T. (cee-ay-tee) with the 4th (soon to be 5th) grade students. Each was given his/her own autographed copy of the book.  To cap off Special Thursdays, the Elks provided ice cream cups after lunch! The last day of summer school each student was given a personal photo as well as a class picture as a keepsake. The session ended with cake and ice cream

DBS 75th Anniversary

Friday, July 22, is the last day the Florida Department of Education (FDOE) will accept public input on the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). All members of the public are invited to submit comments on each component of the law. FDOE officials will consider this feedback as they develop Florida’s draft state plan. To access the public input form, please visit http://www.fldoe.org/academics/essa.stml.

For ease, the feedback form has been divided into specific sections named in the law (#1-#7), each title in the law (#8) and U.S. Department of Education draft regulations (#9) as shown in the list below. You are welcome to provide input on as many of these as you would like, but you are not required to respond to all. Likewise, it is not mandatory to answer every question on a specific topic.

  1. Challenging State Academic Standards
  2. Academic Assessments
  3. State Assessment Grants
  4. Statewide Accountability System
  5. School Improvement
  6. School Support and Improvement Activities
  7. Direct Student Services
  8. General Comments by Title of the Act (Titles I-VIII)
  9. U.S. DOE Draft Regulations on Accountability, State Plans and Data Reporting

As the process continues there will be additional opportunities for stakeholders to offer suggestions. Once FDOE develops Florida’s draft state plan, all of our state’s education stakeholders will be asked again to provide feedback before the state plan is submitted to the U.S. Department of Education.


TAVARES – The bell schedule has been revised at Beverly Shores Elementary, Leesburg Elementary and Groveland Elementary schools for the 2016-17 school year giving students slightly longer days as they work to strengthen their academic performance.

The three are among 34 Central Florida public schools on the state’s list of the 300 lowest-performing elementary schools based on the percentage of students who passed the Florida Standards Assessment English Language Arts (ELA) exam. The ranking is not directly related to the preliminary school grades recently announced by the Florida Department of Education. Those statistics show Beverly Shores earned a C, up from a D last year; Leesburg earned a D, up from an F last year; and Groveland earned a C, the same as last year.

All schools on the list are required to provide an additional hour of instructional time to focus on reading.

Typically, schools have a 90 minute English Language Arts/Reading block that includes literacy. In addition to that 90-minute block, students at Beverly Shores, Leesburg and Groveland will also have a 60-minute literacy block. Because Leesburg and Beverly Shores elementary schools had been categorized as Differentiated Accountability (DA) schools – part of a statewide network of strategic support provided to schools and districts, differentiated by need — they already had a literacy block. The literacy block will be new to Groveland. 

School hours for Beverly Shores Elementary and Leesburg Elementary will be 8:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesday, Thursdays and Fridays. One-hour early release will continue on Wednesdays with school hours of 8:30 a.m. to 2:15 p.m.

School hours for Groveland Elementary will be 8:20 a.m. to 3:05 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. One-hour early release will continue on Wednesdays with school hours of 8:20 a.m. to 2:05 p.m.

School hours for all other Lake County elementary schools will be 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. One-hour early release will continue on Wednesdays with school hours of 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.



Risk Mgmt 1 picmonkey Risk Mgmt 2

Risk Manager Lauren DeRidder was recently presented with the annual FERMA Risk Management Program Best Practices Award for recognition of excellent risk management practices. This distinction, presented by the Florida Educational Risk Management Association (FERMA), is based primarily on having the lowest workers’ compensation experience rating in the state. The experience modification rate is an industry measure of the number and amount of worker’s compensation claims.

Lake County Schools’ experience modification rate dropped from a 1.19 to 0.65. A modification rate of 1.0 is average and anything above that results in a surcharge of premiums and state assessments. Anything below 1.0 results in a credit.

An additional award will be presented to the district at the Florida School Boards Association’s Annual Joint Conference to be held in Tampa in November.

Congratulations to Ms. DeRidder and her team!

TOY Vineyard crop

Macy’s presented the Magic of Teaching Award to Andrea Vineyard, a special education teacher at Tavares High School, on Thursday July 14, 2016, during the Macy’s Florida State Teacher of the Year Banquet held at The Hard Rock Live at Universal Studios in Orlando.
Ms. Vineyard was named Lake County’s teacher of the year in 2016.
Macy’s has created a very special way to recognize Florida’s top educators that provides them with tangible rewards and memories to last a lifetime. Each District Teacher of the Year receives a cash award of $750, and $250 for their respective schools, funded by Macy’s. Also, Macy’s will surprise three District Teachers of the Year with a $1,000 Macy’s gift card and these special awards: the Magic of Leadership award for a teacher who leads by example; the Magic of Teaching award for a teacher who goes beyond the basic job description to continue positive growth in her students; and the Magic of Giving award to a teacher with a unique ability to create positive change in the community.
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