Ann and I talked with students, administrators and teachers at Southwest Miami High School yesterday about how to best prepare Florida’s students for college and careers. We were welcomed by Southwest Miami High School Principal Carlos Diaz.
We visited classrooms where Southwest seniors were taking AP calculus and English. Students were also involved in the school’s Banking and Finance Academy – learning skills for future careers. While visiting the classrooms, I was asked by students about what the state’s outlook on jobs will be once they leave high school and college. Thankfully, Florida’s economy is heading in the right direction, with the largest drop in unemployment of any state over the last 20 months and growing tourism and other economic indicators.
After visiting classrooms, we talked to a group of teachers. Each of them offered great suggestions on how requirements and regulations from the state could be changed to allow them to focus more on student learning. The Southwest faculty also shared that they often could use help to purchase supplies for their classrooms that they now pay for personally. We ended our conversation by discussing the state’s accountability system. Just as I experienced in business, teachers rely a great deal on measurement to assess student progress. They stressed the need for consistency in the assessment system as the state transitions to Common Core standards in order to keep students on track to graduate.
I look forward to more great conversations with parents, students and teachers on how to improve our education system in Fort Myers and Madeira Beach today.
While enjoying the scenic view of the lush tropical coastal hammocks and mangrove forests of John D. MacArthur Beach State Park in North Palm Beach, First Lady Ann Scott shared her passion for literacy with students visiting the park’s Environmental Education Center. Mrs. Scott was joined by representatives from the Florida Department of Education and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to promote the 2012 Summer Literacy Adventure and advance the reading skills of children exploring the park’s unique biological treasures.
“Florida state parks provide an incredible environment for children and families to discover nature and have fun,” said Mrs. Scott. “I want to challenge all of Florida’s students to join me in reading as many books as possible during the summer break and take the Summer Literacy Adventure Pledge.”
The 2012 Summer Literacy Adventure is geared to help motivate and excite children about reading and literacy. There is still time for students to make their summer reading pledge by visiting the Just Read, Florida! website to sign up. At the end of the summer, the department will tally which schools have the most participants. The winning school will be announced in the fall and will receive free passes to any Florida State Park. Read More…
In promotion of fitness and healthy lifestyles, Governor Rick Scott and First Lady Ann Scott announced the winners of the Governor’s Wellness Challenge. Six schools – two elementary, two middle and two high – will receive awards based on the achievements portrayed in their video entries, along with three physical education teachers nominated by colleagues and parents.
Supported by Florida’s Foundation and UnitedHealth Group, the Governor’s Wellness Challenge was aimed at encouraging and recognizing Florida schools that have excelled in teaching students about the importance of a healthy lifestyle. The participating schools provided a short DVD that highlights how the school actively promotes fitness, wellness and a healthy lifestyle to their students. Students, parents, teachers, and principals also nominated exceptional full-time physical education instructors for the Physical Education Teacher of Excellence Award.
Ingredients 2 teaspoons dry yeast ½ cup lukewarm water 2 tablespoons dry parsley 2 tablespoons minced garlic 2 tablespoons dry mint 1 ½ cups chicken broth 3 tablespoons honey 1 egg 5-6 cups whole wheat flour Instructions Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Stir in the parsley, [...]