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Charlotte County Schools in the News

Backpacks from Office Depot!

The Office Depot Foundation recently donated 250 backpacks with school supplies to Charlotte County Public Schools. The backpacks have been distributed to our elementary schools, and well received by our students.

Thank You to the Office Depot Foundation for their kind hearted gift for the children of Charlotte County Public Schools.

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Charlotte Local Education Foundation (CLEF) Grants

Charlotte Local Education Foundation (CLEF) has been awarded several grants to fund the renovation, furnishing and equipping of TechSmart classrooms at Punta Gorda Middle, Port Charlotte Middle, and Murdock Middle Schools. The funding will also provide additional equipment for the TechSmart classrooms at LAAinger Middle School, which were provided this year through a grant of ,678.00 from the Gulf Coast Community Foundation.

Charlotte County Public Schools is extremely grateful for the generosity of these donors for making the TechSmart clssrooms possible, and to CLEF for facilitating the grants. Look for more information about these exciting learning environments when they are completed in the fall.

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Classroom Grants

The Charlotte Local Education Foundation thanks everyone for submitting grants for the STEM area of teachers and technology:

Because of additional match money from Suncoast Credit Union Foundation, CLEF is able to award funding to four schools.

Congratulations to the winners:

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Rotary Club Donates to Charlotte County Public Schools

On Tuesday, September 9, Frank Bell of the Punta Gorda Rotary Club, presented Geri Waksler, President of Charlotte Local Education Foundation, a check for $14,000 for Charlotte County Public Schools "Techsmart" Classrooms at the district middle schools. This award was presented during the school district monthly board meeting.

Pictured from left to right: Chuck Bradley, Asst. Superintendent; Dr. Whittaker, Superintendent; Lee Swift and Bob Segur, School Board; Frank Bell; Ian Vincent, School Board; Geri Waksler; Alleen Miller and Barbara Rendell, School Board.

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Peace River Elementary School has been awarded a $5,000 grant with funding from CenturyLink

Fort Myers, Fla. - CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE: CTL) and the Consortium of Florida Education Foundations (CFEF) recently announced Southwest Florida winners of the CenturyLink Clarke M. Williams Foundation's Teachers and Technology grant program. The program, conducted in partnership with the CFEF, launched in Florida last year and awards grants to schools in CenturyLink's local service areas on behalf of teachers who have developed specific plans to innovatively implement technology in their classroom.

"We are very pleased to be a part of providing innovative technology in the classroom that enhances the learning experience for students in these schools," said Taylor Chestnut CenturyLink vice president and general manager for South Florida "It is exciting to see educators implement creative teaching techniques that assist students in hands-on learning."

Winners were selected by a review committee comprised of community members and a CenturyLink representative.

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State of Education 2014

If you have issues playing the video on our site, Watch it on Youtube.

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Pajama and Book Collection

The Exceptional Student Education Pre-K Core team of Charlotte County Public Schools in partnership with the South Gulf Cove Yacht Club initiated a pajama and book collection to benefit the CARE facility and Charlotte County School Homeless Coalition organizations. Over100 pairs of pajamas were collected. Each pair of pajamas was placed in a bag with an appropriate child's book and toothbrush for distribution to the organizations.

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Flexible and Affordable Higher Education for You and Your Family!

At Charlotte County School District, the Gayler Professional Development Center values and encourages continuous learning and looks for opportunities to help our employees grow both professionally and personally. That's why CCPS is pleased to offer a new benefit to you and your family members - access to online degree programs at preferred tuition rates.

•Learn from the same high-quality faculty that teach on campus
•Multiple start dates per year make it more convenient to enroll
•Courses last 5 to 10 weeks long
•You pay by the course, not the semester

Through this new benefit, you have access to a variety of bachelor's and master's degree programs offered by accredited, reputable public universities. Online degree programs are flexible, allowing you to complete your degree at times that are convenient for you. CCPS has teamed with Academic Partnerships to offer a variety of online learning opportunities, many of which have not been previously available in our area.

Go to http://apdegree.com/CharlotteDistrict to learn more.

MOSI "Potions in Motions" Portable Lab Visits Port Charlotte Middle School

PCMS students on the MOSI Potions In Motion Portable LabOn Thursday, February 28th and Friday, March 1st, The Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) visited Port Charlotte Middle School with their MOSI In Motion Mobile Unit. All 8th grade students participated in this Science/Technology/Engineering/Mathematics (STEM) initiative with some hands on experiments as students completed the "Potions in Motion" chemistry lab. Students participated in experiments with acids & bases and explored the differences between exothermic and endothermic chemical reactions. Special thanks to Mrs. Richards, Science Department Head, for organizing the event!!

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LA Ainger Middle School Principal Marcia Louden to Speak at the Texas Instruments Conference

Gulf Coast Community Foundation consultant Chris Pfahler and L.A. Ainger Middle School Principal Marcia Louden will discuss the success of Gulf Coast's STEMsmart education initiative at a Texas Instruments presentation for school district leaders later this month at Tampa's Museum of Science and Industry.
Ms. Pfahler and Ms. Louden will join nationally recognized speakers at "Transformation 2013: A Game-Changing Look at Learning with Technology in the Era of Common Core" on February 20, 2013. The half-day conference for district leaders from across the region and state will focus on new transformational strategies in secondary math and science teaching and learning.
Ms. Pfahler has managed STEMsmart since Gulf Coast launched the initiative in 2010 to improve student achievement in science, technology, engineering, and math, or "STEM," in several Charlotte and Sarasota county secondary schools. "Through our partnership with the school districts, STEMsmart has helped raise student test scores and given students and teachers unprecedented access to new classroom technology," said Pfahler. STEMsmart accounts for the largest academic deployment of Texas Instruments' TI-Nspire wireless hand-held technology in Florida, and it is also the national flagship for a new TI training program that helps science teachers effectively integrate technology into instruction.
Ms. Louden's school was named "2012 STEMsmart School of the Year" by Gulf Coast Community Foundation. Use of the TI-Nspire technology by all eighth-grade math students at L.A. Ainger Middle School was among the accomplishments cited in the award.
For more information on the STEMsmart program, go to STEMsmart.org.

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Port Charlotte Middle Receives $1050.00 Donation from Local Churches for the Student Benevolence Fund

Julio Guerra, PCH Guidance Counselor, Nancy McCormick, PCUMC Women's Group Leader, Don Kieffer, Senior Warden of Trinity Anglican, Barbara Hald, Children's Director at PCUMC and Demetrius Revelas, PCM PrincipalRepresentatives of Port Charlotte United Methodist Church and Trinity Anglican Church of Port Charlotte came together on December 10, 2102 to make donations in the amount of $1050 to Port Charlotte Middle School's Benevolence Fund. The Benevolence Fund is set up to help our neediest students. Mr. Revelas extends his sincere appreciation to the congregations for their generosity. If you would like to make a contribution to our Benevolence Fund, please contact the school at 255-7460.

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Lock 'N Key Restaurant Sponsors Vineland Elementary School Family Resource Center

Michael Atamachuck and Scott Barbar, Managers of Lock 'N Key Restaurant with Vineland Principal Laura BlunierThe Family Resource Center is open each Wednesday morning from 7:55 until 8:55 for students and their families to borrow books. Students also have an opportunity to receive books to keep. The Center hosts special visitors each month who help promote the love of reading. Lock 'N Key Restaurant has been sponsoring the Resource Center for several years and recently visited to present Principal Laura Blunier with a check for $2000.00.

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Charlotte County School Board Chairman Lee Swift Receives Advanced Boardsmanship Certification Distinction

Mr. Swift was recently honored at the November 28, 2012 Annual Joint conference sponsored by the Florida School Boards Association. The prestigious distinction of Advanced Boarsmandship Certification (ABC) is held only by 6 of the 355 school board members in the State of Florida and is given only to individuals who have met stringent criteria as judged by a panel of peers. This award recognizes school board members who demonstrate exemplary leadership traits through proactive work at the local and regional, state, or national levels.

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Dr. Whittaker Named STAR Superintendent of the Year

Mary Tlachac of Suncoast Schools Frederal Credit Union presenting Dr. Whittaker with the STAR awardCongratulations to Dr. Whittaker for being awarded the STAR Superintendent of the Year by the Consortium of Florida Education Foundation during the annual joint conference of the Florida School Boards Association and the Florida Association of District School Superintendents on November 29, 2012. This award is given to individuals who have shown tremendous dedication and enthusiasm in supporting the efforts of their district-wide education foundation.

Join us for the State of Education Breakfast on January 15 in which our STAR Superintendent Dr. Whittaker will address the business community on the progress the School District has made this past year, as well as the vision for the future school year. The breakfast will also give the Foundation and the School District the opportunity to thank the community for their support and involvement. See how you can be a part of student success. The Breakfast and Presentation will be from 7:30-8:30 a.m. at the Charlotte Technical Center Auditorium. The cost is $10 per person and tickets may be purchased online at CharlotteSchoolFoundation.org. Please RSVP by January 7, 2013.

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LA Ainger Middle Students Experience The Wall

L. A. Ainger Middle School in Rotonda West, Florida, has had a long-standing relationship with the Vietnam Brotherhood. Every year veterans come to the school and talk about what life was like during the war and back home. On Friday, November 30, the eighth grade students will get a chance to experience the traveling Vietnam Memorial as it makes a stop at Pioneer Park in Englewood.  Students will get a chance not only to see the replica (done in scale) but to get up close and even do rubbings of names if they so choose. Students have been given the web site to look up the placement of the name(s) of family members or loved ones who died in the Vietnam War. Students will be given the opportunity to write their feelings as they see The Wall for the first time. At the end of their experience at The Wall, students will take a moment to show their respect as Taps will be played by one of the eight grade students for those who served us so well.

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Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Visits Charlotte High School

Adam Putnam, the Florida Commissioner of Agriculture and Florida State Senator Lizbeth Benacquisto visited agriculture students at Charlotte High School on Thursday, August 23, 2012. Click here to read the article written by Merab-Michal Favorite and printed in the Charlotte Sun on Friday, August 24, 2012.

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Charlotte High School Awarded Cambridge International School Status

Charlotte High School has been awarded Cambridge International School status by University of Cambridge International Examinations and is now approved to offer Cambridge programs and qualifications, including Cambridge Mathematics, Thinking Skills and General Paper.

University of Cambridge International Examinations is the world's largest provider of international education programs and qualifications for 5 to 19 year olds. It is part of the University of Cambridge, one of the world’s top universities and trusted for excellence in education. Cambridge programs and qualifications are taught in more than 9000 schools in over 160 countries.

Principal Richard Shafer said: "We are very excited about the Cambridge International School (AICE) announcement and what it means for our students. Charlotte High School will be able to provide students with an internationally recognized college readiness curriculum that is geared toward developing next generation critical thinkers. The AICE courses are similar to AP, in that the students will take an examination at the end of the course to determine if they receive college credit. Additionally, the programs are identical to AP in terms of the GPA weighting, Florida Colleges and Universities recognition as well as Bright Futures. The physical world seems to be getting smaller around us, while the demands on our students keep growing larger every day. This rigorous international curriculum will provide Charlotte High School students an opportunity to separate themselves from the crowd. "

Learn more about University of Cambridge International Examinations.

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Vineland Elementary Named 26th Lighthouse School by Franklin-Covey

Franklin-Covey Co. named Vineland Elementary the 26th Lighthouse School in the world! In 2009 Vineland adopted The Leader in Me, Franklin-Covey's Education process for teaching leadership at the elementary school level. The official Lighthouse banner is being presented to Vineland on Monday, August 13, 2012. The criteria necessary to become FranklinCovey Lighthouse Schools is available online at www.TheLeaderinMe.org. For more information, read the full press release

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Dr. Stephen R. Covey
A true friend and an inspiration to Charlotte County Public Schools
October 24, 1932 - July 16, 2012

Steven Covey was an educator, author, businessman, and a motivational speaker. Ten Honorary Doctorate Degrees highlight his educational accomplishments which are far too many to list. His book, "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People" was named as the #1 Most Influential Book of the Twentieth Century. His impact upon Charlotte County Public Schools is evidenced by the fact that:

We all share in the loss of this man who opened the minds and hearts of so many in order to make this world a better place.

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Congratulations Charlotte County School Resource Officers, Named as "Best SRO Unit" in the Entire State of Florida

CCPS would like to congratulate the deputies and staff from the Charlotte County Sheriff's Office SRO Unit for this wonderful achievement. Please read the complete story of this award on the CCSO Facebook page.

Congratulations to the 2nd Annual FSBA Video Contest Winners!

The Florida School Boards Association received more than 40 entries for their 2nd Annual Video Contest. Congratulations to the following winners, and click the link to watch the video.

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For more information about school news, or if you would like to post news information to this page, please contact:

Mike Riley
Manager of Adult Education/Community Liaison

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