Numerous public and private high school students in the four-county area of Martin, St. Lucie, Indian River and Okeechobee counties participated in the Indian River State College Creative Writing Contest. The event is hosted annually by the English/Communications/Modern Languages Department. Contestants entered original short stories, one-act plays and poems for a chance to win scholarships and other awards.

In the Senior Awards category, Ramei Boothe of Somerset College Preparatory Academy (SCPA) received first place and won an IRSC scholarship for a series of poems portraying the struggles and emotions of a teenager in a minority community. Zahir Karim also of SCPA earned second place for a short story about the ruthlessness of destiny, and Stephanie Cuello-Martinez of SCPA won third place for a series of poems about hunger, obesity, school violence and teen shaming.

In the Junior Awards category, Sarah Welborn of Okeechobee High School (OHS) received first place for a science-fiction short story about human blood changing colors when crimes are committed. Isabelle McConville of Lincoln Park Academy (LPA) earned second place for a short story about seeking purpose in life as an artist, and Ryan Dakin of LPA won third place for a comedic series of poems about judging poetry contests, the artificiality of “natural” soda flavors and poetry structure likened to board games.

In the Sophomore Awards category, Marissa Ward of LPA received first place for a short story about writing as a saving grace from depression. Marley Elmore of SCPA earned second place for a series of poems about gender, sexuality, the future of teenagers in underprivileged neighborhoods, and challenging the status quo. Alize Merchant of OHS won third place for poems about hopelessness and fear of failure.

In the Freshman Awards category, Weiyu Wu of South Fork High School (SFHS) received first place for a short story likening human experiences and emotions to chess. Casarah Dickson of LPA earned second place for a poem about the struggle, pride and history of African Americans, and Brianthony Cesar of SCPA won third place for a poem about the pain of love and rejection.

The winners were recognized at an awards ceremony March 29 at the Brown Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the IRSC Main Campus in Fort Pierce.



STAR Awards

STAR Awards

Andrea Jacobs, Patricia Chesser, and Eric Henik were all recognized as STARs in their own right at this month’s School Board Meeting.

Andrea Jacobs is a dedicated and compassionate school bus driver.  She was publicly recognized for the way in which her students see her — as one who is always appreciative and has a warm smile — as someone who can make each day better.

Patricia Chesser, a 29-year SLPS veteran and Human Resources Administrative Assistant, was recognized for passing a rigorous exam qualifying her for the prestigious Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM), Senior Certified Professional (SCP) Certification,

Eric Henik, an Area Manager in Custodial Services, was celebrated for taking on the responsibility of becoming a Certified Trainer as per the Florida School Plant Managers Association. Having this distinction, Mr. Henik has trained and continues to train all plant managers in SLPS thus heightening their level of service to others and elevating their personal capacity for success.

Humanitarian STAR Awards

Humanitarian STAR Awards

Bill Tomlinson and LaTanya Green came forward at the April School Board Meeting to recognize the humanitarian efforts of the many individuals from the SLPS’s Student Services and Guidance Department teams.

Mr. Tomlinson explained that after the incident at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Broward County on February 14, 2018, staff members graciously volunteered their time and effort to assist the students and staff of the high school as they began to return to the school.

SLPS’s staff developed a schedule that would afford them an opportunity to provide assistance at the school and still complete the requirements of their job in this district.   They went above and beyond the call of duty in their role to extend a helping hand to their colleagues and to the students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

To each member of this humanitarian support team, we extend our thanks for reaching out as ambassadors for St. Lucie Public Schools.

School Psychologists

David Kinkade

Shelley Welby

Anna Michelle Gillard

Kirsten Poncinie

Kathryn Mantor

Jennie Pahl

Social Workers

Bridget Locke

Martin Tejada

Melissa Desposito

Heather Cannon

Shemair Dorelus

Program Specialists for Guidance

April Mincey

Stephanie Walters-Cleveland

New Home Buyer Perk

New Home Buyer Perk

The City of Port St. Lucie Neighborhood Services Department will be accepting applications from families who are interested in purchasing a home through the State Housing Initiative Partnership (SHIP) Program and who meet the requirements for “Essential Service Personnel,” which is defined as “ Teachers, educators, other school district employees, community college employees and university employees; police and fire personnel; healthcare personnel; skilled building trades personnel; government personnel and active military personnel. “ Applications will be available for one (1) week period ONLY, starting May 7, 2018, thru May 11, 2018, all applications must be returned by appointment only no later than May 21, 2018. Any unselected applications will be canceled when all funds have been committed. The City of Port St Lucie has set aside $200,000 for the Down Payment Program and will offer a  maximum of $20,000 per household for down payment and closing cost assistance. If you are interested in purchasing a home in the City of Port St. Lucie, you may be eligible for financial assistance through the SHIP program. Deferred, interest-free mortgages are available for those who need funds for home purchase assistance. In order to qualify, you cannot currently own a home when you apply, the home must be your primary residence, you must contribute a minimum of $500 of your own funds towards the purchase of the home and you must be able to qualify for a first mortgage with a lender approved by the City of Port St. Lucie.






LPA Studio Art

LPA Studio Art

Students in Ms. Steffens Studio Art classes have been participating in a host of exciting contests, exhibitions and juried shows this school year. Their work has been displayed at the Art Connection in Ft. Pierce, The 3rd Annual Highwaymen Heritage Trail Festival, and the St. Lucie County Fairgrounds.  We were recently notified of several wins in the PSL Drop Savers Poster Contest and are awaiting word on the Doodle4Google contest and the eminent Dali Museum’s Student Surrealist Art Exhibition entries.

An “Excellent” Performance By Southport Middle School Band

An “Excellent” Performance By Southport Middle School Band

Under the direction of Band Director Jim Lebon, students from the Southport Middle School Band recently performed at the Florida Bandmasters Association District 13 Concert Music Performance Assessment, a yearly festival that is judged by well-known professionals from our state.  The festival was held at Treasure Coast High School.  The band prepared three pieces for stage performance: Enterprise March, Theme and Variations, and Sea Song Fantasy.

After the stage performance the band moved from the stage to the band room and sight read two pieces. They had three minutes to prepare a march and five minutes to prepare an overture.  During the prep time the band and the director could do anything except play their instruments.  After the sight reading was over, Raul Alvarez presented his preparation of Fantasy On A French Folk Song as a student conductor.

Overall, the band was rated as Excellent.  The stage performance was rated as Excellent by all three judges.  The sight reading performance was rated as Superior and the student conductor number was also rated as Superior.  The band members will receive medals as a commemorative of their efforts in their performance.
Photos courtesy of Denise Barbour, DB Photography
Senior Signing at Lincoln Park Academy

Senior Signing at Lincoln Park Academy

On Friday, April 6th, six seniors were recognized for their academic and athletic excellence as they committed to the college or university of their choice to continue playing their sport.  Congratulations to these fine seniors:

From left to right:

Logan Peters -Baseball – North Park University in Chicago, IL

Emilie Passanante – Bowling – Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah, GA

Alisa Passanante – Bowling – Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah, GA

Phillip Katta – Tennis – Belmont Abbey College in Charlotte, NC

Tyler Hogan – Soccer – Florida International University

Kayla Glennon – Swimming – North Florida University

State Drill Meet

State Drill Meet

On April 7th the Port St. Lucie High School Jaguar Battalion Drill Team competed in the State Drill Meet in Lakeland, FL at George Jenkins High School. With the hard work and diligence from the team, the Jaguars’ Drill Team ended their season on a great note.

Deals and Discounts

Deals and Discounts

St. Lucie Public Schools Deals and Discounts Page is an internal savings site for employees.  Throughout the year, offerings are added that may be of interest. Check it out to see if something meets your need!

Coming up:  Rapids Water Park – Educators Appreciation Day: June 3rd

Click on the “TEAM SLPS on Share” icon at the bottom of the SLPS Homepage.

Type in your username and password to access Deals and Discounts.

School Resource Officers

School Resource Officers

When St. Lucie Sheriff’s Officer Wheeler was assigned to support Fairlawn Elementary School, it was apparent that a positive connection was established right away.

With appreciation for the support she provides and wanting her to feel like Fairlawn was her home, teachers and students began writing letters to her and making plans to decorate her office on the school’s campus.

As Principal Holmes visited Mrs. Singley’s second grade classroom, she read Daniel Pereira’s letter.  As you can see, he shares his thoughts in a positive format that states thank you in a heartwarming way.




School Resource Officers provide services beyond law enforcement. They build positive relationships with students, staff, and families and serve as valuable mentors for students.




Read All About It!

Read All About It!

Read in this month’s Principal Leadership “how one school increased teacher collaboration, enhanced trust and transparency, and improved student performance.”  This comes to you from our own Kathleen Manchester (Southport Middle School) and Tari Sexton (Forest Grove Middle School).
To access the full article, click here:
Air, Sea, Land Challenge at TCHS

Air, Sea, Land Challenge at TCHS

The Air, Sea, Land Challenge at Treasure Coast High School was an outstanding opportunity for students to exercise their technology skills and demonstrate their robotics ingenuity.  Special thanks to Ian Cotner of AT&T who joined Thom Jones of the Education Foundation in sponsoring the drone program at the exhibition.





TCHS Takes Over Courthouse

TCHS Takes Over Courthouse

On 04/04/18, TCHS’s Criminal Justice Department took a group of six students to the Federal Courthouse located in Fort Pierce. Judge Maynard and Judge Rosenberg put together a case about online threats made by an individual. Students were divided into three groups: prosecution, defense, and jury. All three groups worked with true professionals in the field such as lawyers, public defenders, and court staff members. As soon as TCHS was prepared for the mock trial, they went into a real courtroom and performed.
The two judges and all other professionals (a total of eight) guided our students all of the time while providing  them with feedback and coaching them.
It was just phenomenal. These people went above and beyond.
All-Star Game at Mets Stadium

All-Star Game at Mets Stadium

 Don’t Miss the SLPS vs SLC Firefighters All-Star Game

Prior to the Mets Game on May 12th!

3-4PM Vendor Booths

4 – 5PM  Game

$8.00 Ticket Includes All-Star Game and Mets Game

Proceeds Benefit St. Lucie Public Schools Educators and Students

Buy Tickets online @





Step It Up

Step It Up

St. Lucie Public Schools is making progress toward the Billion Step Challenge.  Invite more friends to join your team!

Need some ideas on how to get those extra steps in?

Take a look at Stacy Jacobson Donnelly’s Triple W Wellness Newsletter each Wednesday.

From 5K runs to low impact exercise classes, there are tips to get everyone moving.

How about a 5K Run/1 mile Walk? *3rd Annual Treasure Coast Heroes 5k Run/1 mile Walk

Make your errands count! Park farther away from the front door.

Take an extra loop around the grocery store or market before you check out.

Take the stairs whenever possible.

Use your breaks for fitness!  Instead of sitting during your lunch hour, take to the road for a midday walk.

Make time for a brief walk every evening, even 10 minutes a day can really add up.

Take the longest route to your co-workers desk, the restroom, or the water fountain.

Schedule a walk like an appointment, this way you’re sure not to miss it!





Summer Professional Development – DBQ

Summer Professional Development – DBQ

The Office of Teaching and Learning is offering a DBQ (Document Based Questions) training for Social Studies teachers in grades 4 – 11 this summer.  You will be trained in all six steps of DBQ’s which helps connect literacy and social studies learning for students.  You can register via Frontline at

Summer Professional Development

Summer Professional Development

The Office of Teaching and Learning invites you to join us for the Math Standards Institute sessions this summer.  Below is a description of the sessions.

Standards Institute Session 1: This training is designed to introduce the learner to the three shifts of instruction in mathematics.  We will explore standards to see the connection between multiple grade level standards.  The three levels of rigor will be used in the standards and tasks.  Mathematical practices will be discussed to understand the “how” of teaching standards and learners will leave with materials and resources they can use for instruction in their classroom.


Standards Institute Session 2: This training is designed to make the connection between grade level materials and the district support documents.  The shifts of instruction will be addressed through standards-based tasks as the learner looks for rigor and coherence in a grade level and throughout the grade levels.  There will be tasks to take back and utilize in the classroom.

You can register in Frontline at

Drive for Education at PSLHS

Drive for Education at PSLHS

On Saturday April 21, test drive a new Buick and help Port St. Lucie High School (PSLHS) located at 1201 SE Jaguar Lane in Port St. Lucie receive up to $10,000. Garber Buick GMC in Ft. Pierce will have new Buick vehicles at the school for this Test Drive Event from 8:00am-3:00pm. For each 2-3 minute Test Drive, Buick will donate $10.00.  When the event exceeds 100 test drives, Buick will double the donation to $20.00.  The goal is to reach the maximum donation of $10,000 for the day!


Participants will sign-in on the east side of PSLHS’s campus where they will have easy access to the test drive range.  Drivers must be 21 years of age or older and have a valid driver’s license and proof of insurance.  There is a limit of two donations per household.


Celebrating Successes!

Celebrating Successes!

On Wednesday, March 28, 2018, Keiser University in partnership with St. Lucie Public Schools Career and Technical Education Department hosted the Criminal Justice Academy Completers Awards Breakfast.  More than one hundred seniors from Fort Pierce Central High School, Fort Pierce Westwood High School, St. Lucie West Centennial High School, and Treasure Coast High School kicked off the graduation season by being honored along with their parents and teachers.

Special guests Port St. Lucie Vice Mayor Shannon Martin, St. Lucie Public Schools Superintendent E. Wayne Gent, Port St. Lucie Police Assistant Chief Richard DelToro, and St. Lucie Sheriff’s Lieutenant Bill Hardman addressed the future leaders with congratulations, encouragement, and words of wisdom.

Keiser University President Leslie Kristof and her staff highlighted the beautiful Keiser campus in Tradition and announced up to 25% tuition discount offered to the Criminal Justice senior completers in the audience.  Following the ceremony, Treasure Coast High School’s Culinary Arts students served a delicious breakfast!


Ja’ Marcus Bartley FPWHS, Mary Gemino SLWCHS, Jaymi Rigg SLWCHS are shown here with industry certification shirts. #StLucieProud