Good News About Good Schools
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Yes, there is good news about schools and The News-Journal has it!
Fla. graduation rate a new high
Florida recorded its best graduation and dropout rates ever last school year, state officials announced Wednesday, while Volusia and Flagler counties did better than the state average in both categories.
Pupils become meteorologists for a day
From hurricanes to planes, 33 local pupils landed aircraft, learned about tornadoes and conducted weather experiments during Science Day at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University April 7.
Reflections winners advance to state
Ten local pupils’ favorite place is now at the state level. The pupils have all been recognized recently by the Volusia County Council of PTAs’ Reflections Program as county-wide winners.
Whose fastball's fastest?
Kelsi Dunne will go down as one of the best softball pitchers in state history. Baseball pitcher Michael Main will likely be a first-round pick in the June draft.
Longtime coach, mentor gets nod
Debbie Rawlins never dreamed that her volleyball coaching career would last for over three decades.
Spruce Creek wins 4th straight girls weightlifting state title
New Smyrna Beach’s Alexa DeCristofaro and Patrice Doemer savored their first state titles together and Spruce Creek extended its dominance in girls weightlifting with a fourth straight team championship.
Quick cuts keep class cooking
For Hilmar Jonsson, slicing and dicing food in the blink of an eye is just one of those things.
Bewitching class project takes trio of girls to Boston
Three local teenagers were so bewitched by a recent history class project they hopped a jet to Massachusetts to conduct firsthand research.
Leadership seminar inspires students
Leaders stood up to be counted at a conference at Campbell Middle School last week.
Dad sees perks of role in PTA
Joseph Darrisaw used to leave PTA meetings and similar events at his daughters´ school up to his wife.
Author puts Turie T. Small Elementary in spotlight
Gene Maeroff, author of more than a dozen books on education, visited schools around the country to write his new book on the importance of early education (prekindergarten through third grade).
Cafeteria manager the special at Matanzas High
As she slides a fresh pizza out of the oven, Graciela Butarelli glances at the clock in the Matanzas High School kitchen. It is 10:30 in the morning, just five minutes before the first lunch period begins.
Out of the classroom into zero gravity
Robert Hernandez unveiled his Superman T-shirt, put his arms out in front of his body and flew nonstop across the air space of G-Force One -- a 727 airliner -- and survived to tell others.
Volusia, Flagler closing gap in success
Volusia and Flagler schools both made the top 10 list this year of Florida school districts doing the best job of closing the achievement gap between white and minority students.
Tech Center puts teens to work
The ATC has become a much sought-after source of young talent, according to Cheryl Miller, the school´s work experience coordinator.
Students becoming AVID learners
The Advancement via Individual Determination program is now offered in six of Volusia´s nine high schools and for eighth-graders in eight of the 13 middle schools, serving nearly 700 students this school year.
Minority teachers often inspire by example
Low expectations are one of many factors researchers say help explain the difference in academic performance between white and minority students.
Volusia school officials keep raising the bar
To push more students into rigorous academic courses, Volusia middle and high schools are reviewing thousands of student records to identify students not working up to their potential.
Closing the gap
The academic achievement gap between minority children and their white counterparts starts early -- most often rooted in poverty.
With that support, ´You can do anything´
Successful students, generally, have at least three "caring adults" who help them get through high school.
Spruce Creek wins scholarly acclaim
Spruce Creek High School ranks first among International Baccalaureate programs in North America -- and fourth in the world -- for the number of exams given in that high-powered academic program.
Wireless wave connecting teachers, students
When Matanzas High School science teacher Francis Lipscomb gives a lesson, she whips open her wireless laptop computer and clicks on a Power Point presentation that gets projected onto a large pull-down screen at the front of her classroom.
Yes, it is rocket science for busy junior
When Angela Pitenis, 15, a junior in the International Baccalaureate program at Spruce Creek High School, was asked what she does for fun, with tongue in cheek she answered, "I don´t understand the question."
Seabreeze student enjoys time on C-SPAN
Erika Barger, 17, a senior at Seabreeze High School, had the experience of a lifetime as she co-hosted a nationally televised program on C-SPAN, the cable political network, on Oct. 8.
Board to vote on middle school basketball
The interscholastic sports program abandoned long ago in Volusia County middle schools would be reborn in a limited fashion under a policy change expected to be approved this week.
1 plus 1 makes for positive classroom experience
The pupils maneuver the oversized red and navy Legos into the proper formations: one red and one blue equals two, three blue and three more equals six.
New high school opens with an ‘aarrrgh’
How do you greet a pirate? For students and faculty at the new Matanzas High School -- home of the Pirates -- the answer is simple: You bend your finger into a hook and growl a resounding "aarrrrgh."
· School district leaders face growth issues
Mainland High may open by graduation
A principal´s dream to have the seniors of the Class of 2006 graduate from the new school they´ve watched rise next door to Mainland High could be just enough to make it come true.
Expect ‘time convergence’ at Volusia schools
The past, present and future of Volusia County schools will come together beginning this summer as East Volusia schools mix traditions with fresh ideas about how schools work best, and sparkling new facilities they´ll occupy for many years to come.
Student progress may be checked online
Parents soon will have a new way to keep tabs on how well their children are doing in Volusia County public schools.