School District Staff Invited to Present at National Math Expo

ST. LUCIE COUNTY – The National Council for Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) conference will boast a slate of St. Lucie Public School teachers as speakers.  Instructional support specialists Liz Pruitt, Jason Bragg, and Chris Worley have been invited to present at the 2016 NCTM Annual Meeting and Exposition in San Francisco, California.  Superintendent E. Wayne Gent commented on the fact that this is yet another testament to the rich talent we have in our school district to support quality instruction for our students.

The team will present to teachers from across the United States on “Leveraging the Standards of Mathematical Practices (SMPs) through Reciprocal Teaching.”   According to Liz Pruitt, mathematics curriculum lead teacher for the District and lead speaker, “This is an exciting topic. Reading strategies in math are not uncommon, but we are going to dive deep into reciprocal teaching methods that will serve as additional supports to increase student thinking in the math classroom. We will focus on how instructors can create student-led discussion groups that seamlessly embed the SMPs into the four strategies common to reciprocal teaching.”  She explained that the strategies include summarizing, questioning, clarifying, and predicting.

Mathematics professional educators flock to this conference annually.  This year’s event anticipates a capacity crowd of 9,000.  In addition to the quality breakout sessions, professional educators have the important opportunity to collaborate, extend their network of colleagues, and stay abreast of high impact instructional practices.

About St. Lucie Public Schools

The mission of St. Lucie Public Schools is to ensure all students graduate from safe and caring schools equipped with the knowledge, skills and desire to succeed. For more information visit St. Lucie Public Schools’ website www.stlucieschools.org ; Facebook www.facebook.com/stlucieschools; Twitter@StLucieSchools; or contact Kerry Padrick at kerry.padrick@stlucieschools.org.

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NATIONAL MERIT SCHOLARSHIP SEMIFINALIST NAMED FROM ST. LUCIE PUBLIC SCHOOLS

NATIONAL MERIT SCHOLARSHIP SEMIFINALIST NAMED FROM ST. LUCIE PUBLIC SCHOOLS

“Geoffrey Zheng, a senior at Lincoln Park Academy (LPA) in Fort Pierce has been named as one of the semifinalists for the 2016 National Merit Scholarship Program,” announced Superintendent E. Wayne Gent. “This is a prestigious honor, and I am very proud of Geoffrey’s achievement and the instructional support he has received. He is a fine representative of students in our schools.”

LPA Principal Henry Sanabria had the pleasure of sharing the news with Zeng who said, “I am honored to have been selected as a semi-finalist.  I realize that all of my hard work throughout high school has paid off, and I hope to continue working hard and pursuing excellence.”

The Superintendent’s sentiments were echoed by Education Commissioner Pam Stewart. When the news of semifinalists was announced, she said, “I am very proud of our students for being nominated as National Merit semifinalists. This is a testament to the hard work of our state’s educators who help unlock the potential that lies within our students. As schools around the state are settling in to a new school year, I hope the success of these students will help motivate all of our students to do their very best.”

National Merit Scholarship Corporation officials recognized high school seniors with the highest scores on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test who met program requirements. Semifinalists are now eligible to compete for one of 7,400 National Merit Scholarships totaling more than $32 million.

To be considered for a Merit Scholarship Award, semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to become a finalist. The semifinalist and his or her school must submit a detailed scholarship application that includes the student’s academic record throughout high school, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, and honors and awards received. The student must also be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, write an essay and earn an SAT score that confirms the earlier performance on the qualifying test. Finalists are selected based on exceptional skills, accomplishments and potential for success in rigorous college studies.

Fort Pierce Central Honors 9/11

Fort Pierce Central Honors 9/11

The annual Fort Pierce Central High School 9/11 Ceremony represents an opportunity for students, faculty, staff, and area first-responders to come together to honor the victims and survivors of the tragic events that took place on September 11th, 2001. For the ceremony, the Cobra Battalion JROTC flag detail carries the U.S. and Florida State colors to the school flag pole and, to the tune of reveille, raises them to the top of the flag pole (full staff) . Once the colors reach the top, the trumpet player sounds taps and the flag detail lowers the colors to half staff.

Fort Pierce Central High Cobra Battalion flag detail prepares to post colors at 9/11 ceremony.

Fort Pierce Central High Cobra Battalion flag detail prepares to post colors at 9/11 ceremony.

Fort Pierce First- responders join faculty, staff, and students of Fort Pierce Central High for 9/11 ceremony

Fort Pierce First- responders join faculty, staff, and students of Fort Pierce Central High for 9/11 ceremony

After a moment of silence, guest speakers including the Cobra Battalion Cadet Battalion Commander Valerie Cardenas, the JROTC Senior Army Instructor Lieutenant Colonel (US Army retired) Matthew Saxton, and guest speaker Major Tommy White (US Army retired) spoke to the assembly about the horrible events that took place and the importance of honoring those who perished and those who survived.

World Trade Center Tribute

World Trade Center Tribute

By: Kaylee Zuidema
September 11th is a day to have a moment of silence and remember all of the men, women, and children who died in the attack on the World Trade Center; it has been fourteen years since the Twin Towers collapsed. Port Saint Lucie High School held a ceremony in the auditorium to remind us what happened on that fateful day.
The JROTC cadets, Cadet Sergeant Major Adam Pagan, Cadet Command Sergeant Major Jamie Triplett, Cadet Major Catherine Zukowski, and Cadet Major Julian Taft presented the flags at the ceremony.
Deputy Rosario, who works at the school as a School Resource Deputy (SRD), shared his story with us. Deputy Rosario was a forensic officer at the time; he told us about the Bucket Brigade and how it was one of the hardest things he has ever had to do. The Bucket Brigade cleaned up the trash and remains from the fallen buildings.

9/11 Heroes Tribute

9/11 Heroes Tribute

On September 11th, SGA paid tribute to our heroes by hosting a grandparents breakfast and dedicating a mural to law enforcement and firefighters. Art Teacher Jordan Emerson along with SGA students created the mural, SGA Stands United, to let first responders know that we appreciate and support them. (Pictured are: Principal Wilke, Assistant Principal Smith, SRD Horowitz and SRO Captain Scavuzzo)

National Merit Scholarship Semifinalist Named From St. Lucie Public Schools

“Geoffrey Zheng, a senior at Lincoln Park Academy (LPA) in Fort Pierce has been named as one of the semifinalists for the 2016 National Merit Scholarship Program,” announced Superintendent E. Wayne Gent. “This is a prestigious honor, and I am very proud of Geoffrey’s achievement and the instructional support he has received. He is a fine representative of students in our schools.”

LPA Principal Henry Sanabria had the pleasure of sharing the news with Zeng who said, “I am honored to have been selected as a semi-finalist.  I realize that all of my hard work throughout high school has paid off, and I hope to continue working hard and pursuing excellence.”

The Superintendent’s sentiments were echoed by Education Commissioner Pam Stewart. When the news of semifinalists was announced, she said, “I am very proud of our students for being nominated as National Merit semifinalists. This is a testament to the hard work of our state’s educators who help unlock the potential that lies within our students. As schools around the state are settling in to a new school year, I hope the success of these students will help motivate all of our students to do their very best.”

National Merit Scholarship Corporation officials recognized high school seniors with the highest scores on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test who met program requirements. Semifinalists are now eligible to compete for one of 7,400 National Merit Scholarships totaling more than $32 million.

To be considered for a Merit Scholarship Award, semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to become a finalist. The semifinalist and his or her school must submit a detailed scholarship application that includes the student’s academic record throughout high school, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, and honors and awards received. The student must also be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, write an essay and earn an SAT score that confirms the earlier performance on the qualifying test. Finalists are selected based on exceptional skills, accomplishments and potential for success in rigorous college studies.

Bayshore students and staff stand united in the Circle of Hope

Bayshore students and staff stand united in the Circle of Hope

Mariposa Elementary Receives a Grant

Mariposa Elementary Receives a Grant

At Mariposa Elementary, our very own first grade teacher, Ms. Toni Baptiste, recently received a grant from PetCo for their Pets in the Classroom program!
Her class now has a special addition, Sebastian, a hermit crab, that will help the students learn about animals and their environment. Students will understand that living things have needs to help them grow. This will also provide students a great experience for careful observation to better understand the natural world.

Congratulations Ms. Baptiste!

Port St. Lucie and Fort Pierce Westwood High Schools to Pilot Learning Innovation

Port St. Lucie and Fort Pierce Westwood High Schools to Pilot Learning Innovation

ST. LUCIE COUNTY – St. Lucie Public Schools (SLPS) launches Access Now, a pilot program to support anytime/anywhere learning and access to content which supports students’ college and career readiness skills. This initiative includes a laptop distributed to every student and teacher at Port St. Lucie High School and Fort Pierce Westwood High School. With distribution slated to begin on September 8th, there is tremendous excitement in the air. According to Superintendent E. Wayne Gent, “Supporting teaching and learning through these workforce tools and networks is a fundamental shift which also supports the mission of SLPS which is to ensure all students graduate from safe and caring schools, equipped with the knowledge, skills and desire to succeed.

SLPS is providing Dell 5450 laptops to each student and instructor at the two high schools. The devices will be used at school, at home, and in the community for school assignments and educational purposes. The laptops have solid state technology, are loaded with the full Microsoft Office Suite, and can run wireless anywhere. Access to these devices will empower and educate students as well as expand teaching and learning opportunities beyond the walls of the classroom.

The Access Now program will provide students not only with a device, but also individualized, blended, interactive curriculum. Teachers will be able to personalize instruction for their students to address individual needs and learning styles. In addition, students will use various online tools and resources to collaborate and communicate with their classmates and teachers.

The laptops will be loaned to each student at the beginning of the school year and must be returned at the end of the year.  Students will be made aware of the expectations and responsibilities that come with the care and use of the devices and the requirement that laptops must be brought to school every day. Several safety measures have also been put in place. Each laptop is equipped with a filtering system that protects students from inappropriate sites and blocks them from certain social media outlets. The laptops can also be shut down remotely should they be lost or stolen. Most importantly will be the cyber safety and digital citizenship lessons and resources provided to students and their parents.

“Helping students understand the responsibility associated with being good citizens applies to the real world and to the digital world,” explained Gent. What students do online can leave a permanent digital footprint. A spur of the moment decision such as posting a funny picture or sharing an angry post can resurface years later, and if they are not careful, their reputations can be forever damaged.  Increasingly, colleges and employers are checking social media sites to screen their potential applicants.  In addition, a negative digital footprint can adversely affect a student’s potential future livelihood.  “This is why it is vitally important that we continue to educate the whole child and build strong partnerships between home and school,” said Gent.

SLPS is launching this pilot in two of its high schools this year with plans to expand the initiative to other schools in future years.

About St. Lucie Public Schools

The mission of St. Lucie Public Schools is to ensure all students graduate from safe and caring schools equipped with the knowledge, skills and desire to succeed. For more information visit St. Lucie Public Schools’ website www.stlucieschools.org ; Facebook www.facebook.com/stlucieschools; Twitter@StLucieSchools; or contact Kerry Padrick at kerry.padrick@stlucieschools.org.

 

 

School District Receives $300,000.00 Grant

ST. LUCIE COUNTY – Superintendent E. Wayne Gent of St. Lucie Public Schools (SLPS) announced the District was awarded a Math and Science Partnership (MSP) Grant from the State of Florida for over $300,000. The goal of this grant is to improve content knowledge tied directly to the Florida Standards for the purpose of creating quality educators and increasing student achievement.

Through the funding of the grant, 27 SLPS 4th-8th grade teachers will be enrolled in the         U-FUTuRES Certificate Program with the University of Florida. This program consists of five, 8-week courses that will be offered sequentially online using state-of-the-art instructional design. The program is intended to deepen participants’ disciplinary content knowledge, develop science-specific pedagogical practices, and nurture leadership skills.

“With a core focus on talent development and a commitment to honor our teachers with growth opportunities, I fully appreciate this grant and the potential it has to positively impact instruction for our students,” stated Gent. He added that the partnership established with the University of Florida through coursework and collegial studies will also be an asset to the overall organization.

About St. Lucie Public Schools

The mission of St. Lucie Public Schools is to ensure all students graduate from safe and caring schools equipped with the knowledge, skills and desire to succeed. For more information visit St. Lucie Public Schools’ website www.stlucieschools.org ; Facebook www.facebook.com/stlucieschools; Twitter@StLucieSchools; or contact Kerry Padrick at kerry.padrick@stlucieschools.org.

Family Night at C.A. Moore Elementary

Family Night at C.A. Moore Elementary

cam2 cam3 cam4C. A. Moore Elementary, Parent Academy, and 21st Century partnered for a Family Night. The families ate dinner together and had conversation cards at each table to generate family discussions.

After dinner, the students remained in the cafeteria for science activities and the parents transitioned to the media center for parent activities facilitated by Donna Gibson from Parent Academy.

These sessions will be held monthly at CAM.

Fort Pierce Central Honors 9/11

Morningside grandparents are center stage!

Morningside Elementary celebrated Grandparents’ Day a little early.  The grandparents were invited to join their students for lunch on the stage, in front of the stage, and throughout the cafe to celebrate the importance of family supporting education and their students!

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Fort Pierce Central Honors 9/11

Southern Oaks Middle School Students Visit the Media Center

The students at Southern Oaks Middle School began their weekly visit to the Media Center in September.  The students will come to the media center each week for 15 minutes through Science, Social Studies and Language Arts classes to check out books.  Each week, the students will come to the media center with a different class.  During this time, Ms. Odom (Media Specialist) and Mr. Knight (Media Clerk) will read from a variety of  books to help the students venture out of their reading preference to something a little different.  Eighth grade student Sebastian Lippard has started reading his book.

 

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Northport VPK-8 School Educates and Commemorates on 9/11

Northport VPK-8 School Educates and Commemorates on 9/11

Each school year, Northport is pleased and proud to present to our students many different educational experiences about the tragedy of September 11, 2001. This year has been no different. Students in Melanie Polascak’s fifth grade class learned about the Survivor’s Tree which withstood the fall of the Twin Towers. Students made their own quilt to display in the school hallway to remember the Survivor’s Tree. Students also signed a “Northport American Children’s Pledge” to be great citizens of the United States of America. Those pledges line the hallways of Northport. The “Northport American Children’s Pledge” was recited over the intercom on 9/11 following the Pledge of Allegiance.

On 9/11/15, Northport Media Center hosted a moving and auspicious program that included thoughts from retired longtime instructor, Mary Toto, who was teaching at Northport on 9/11; Maryanne Warren, Student Assistance counselor; and retired New Your City police detective, Albert Hickey. Detective Hickey was a First Responder at Ground Zero on 9/11. He is an excellent primary source for our students as he told his story and students then directed questions in “Leadership Summit” format. Detective Hickey answered deep and often times sad questions realizing that much of the instruction of the day was new material.

Also present was a large contingency of “Northport Veteran Partners In Education.” The program was dedicated not only to the 3,000 souls who lost their lives on 9/11, but to the eight children who perished that day. The Northport media center has since been dedicated and renamed “Northport 9/11 Children’s Memorial Library” to honor the lives of those children, but to also remind our students that learning about 9/11 must continue and that each must be a good citizen of the most wonderful and free country in the world.

The program ended at the flag pole in front of the school where teachers and veterans, Nick Carey and Christine Nurse raised, then lowered the American flag to half staff. Flags were posted for each of the eight children who perished and the National Anthem and several other songs were sung to commemorate the day.

St. Lucie Reading Council

St. Lucie Reading Council

slc reading council

During Tuesday’s (9/8/15) School Board Meeting (also International Literacy Day), St. Lucie County’s Reading Council read a proclamation stating that each Wednesday during the 2015-2016 school year will be recognized as a day to promote a passion for literacy.

Dads Take Your Child to School Day

Dads Take Your Child to School Day

A Committee of school and community leaders brought forth a proclamation at the September 8 School Board Meeting — Dads Bring Your Child to School Day.

St. Lucie Public Schools, along with other school districts in Florida, will recognize this initiative on September 30, 2015.

St. Lucie sees this as a movement rather than a moment to promote involvement of dads and male care givers in the lives of their students.

Fort Pierce Central Honors 9/11

STAR Awards – Exceptional Customer Service

STAR Awards

St. Lucie Public Schools recognizes its team members for exceptional customer service each month. T his month’s recipients were:

West Gate K – 8 Team (Jennifer Harris, Ron Noble, Dana Buehrig, Christopher Calvo, Natalie Collis, Sean McInerney, and Andrea Malin): With approximately 600 students being picked up daily, this team has implemented a safe and organized pan to ensure that all students get to their parents’ cars safely – rain or shine.

Finance Team (Barbara Audette as a representative for the Payroll Department): With an eye toward the needs of the SLPS staff during the recent weather event in which circumstances were unknown about storm direction and impact to SLPS, she and her team facilitated the early release of payroll on Friday instead of Monday to support employees in their preparation for the potential threat to our coast.

District Maintenance Team (George Despinos): This gentleman is a caring and dedicated electrician. He was heralded by the principal of Oak Hammock K-8.  She said, “While walking the campus on Thursday, I came across a large area of ceiling tiles and framing that were missing causing a hole above a teacher’s door.  George Despinos was on campus and he assisted in getting this area fixed prior to our parents arriving for Open House.  He and his co-worker did a wonderful job, and the teachers truly appreciated his attention to detail and the timeliness of his support.”

Transportation Team (LaTonya Hubbard): Mrs. Hubbard serves as a bus driver. As one of the first individuals a child sees before school starts and one of the last individuals a child sees after the school day closes, Mrs. Hubbard’s compassion and caring support for students in her charge are wonderful bookends to a child’s day. She is very customer friendly. Her introductory and update phone calls to parents are greatly appreciated. In fact, an informative phone call to the parent of a first-time Kindergarten bus rider relieved apprehension and set the tone for a positive year.

District Volunteer Team (Carol Andor): Mr. Andor has been a volunteer at Mariposa Elementary for five years and was named Mariposa’s outstanding volunteer in 2013-14. He is the chairperson for the SAC Committee and treasurer for PTO. He is an involved volunteer whose mission it is to enhance the welcoming environment for parents at Mariposa. He has painted and built tables for the Parent Resource Room, has helped paint the media center, and painted the front office. Now, he is presently building bulletin boards for the front office and cafeteria. He is ever-present with fundraisers and school-based activities and never forgets to honor the faculty and staff with his attention.

STAR Award Sept 8, 2015

Dept Recognition Sept 8, 2015