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Category archives for: Flagler County School Board

Yet Another Candidate For Superintendent Withdraws, Reducing Interviews to Two

| January 27, 2014

Kevin Perry, an assistant superintendent in St. Lucie County schools, is the latest candidate to withdraw from contention, which means only acting superintendent Jacob Oliva and Osceola Assistant Superintendent Pamela Tapley will be interviewed on Thursday.

Board Picks 3 For Superintendent Interviews, But 2 Will Have To Travel on Their Own Dime

| January 23, 2014

The Flagler school board elected to interview Jacob Oliva–its current acting superintendent–James Parla of New Jersey and Pamela Tapley of Osceola County, but the board was bitterly divided over whether to pay for candidates’ accommodation and travel. A 3-2 split decided against paying.

Fulfilling Pledge, Rep. Travis Hutson Files Animal Cruelty Bill Inspired By FPC Student

| January 23, 2014

Animal abuse may cost abusers far more in penalties and punishment if a bi-partisan bill inspired by Flagler Palm Coast High School student Morgan Purtlebaugh and filed by Rep. Travis Hutson last week becomes law.

Cindy Moore and Jill Espinosa Earn School District’s Top Honors for 2013

| January 20, 2014

Cindy Moore, a testing coordinator and secretary at Flagler Palm Coast High School, was named the 2014 Employee of the Year, and Jill Espinosa, a kindergarten teacher at Belle Terre Elementary, was the Teacher of the Year.

Superintendent Application Window Closes With Just 20 Applicants, Several of Whom Are Already Disqualified

| January 18, 2014

It is an unusually low number for superintendent postings across the state, but not a surprising one considering the circumstances in Flagler, where Jacob Oliva is a heavy favorite, his front-runner status broadly publicized. All the applications are included.

With 3 Days To Go, Flagler Superintendent Job Draws Just 13 Applicants and Fewer Serious Contenders

| January 14, 2014

Candidates may have been turned off by the school board loudly and repeatedly telegraphing its favoritism for Assistant Superintendent Jacob Oliva, with the job posting straddling the holidays and the abbreviated search process likely not helping. The applications are published in full.

Superintendent Search Committee Signs Off on Applicant Pool Criteria, But Questions Speed

| January 9, 2014

The 40-odd questions aim to provide as objective a set of criteria as possible to weed through the pile of superintendent applicants and reduce it to a short list of four to six names that will be passed on to the school board as recommendations.

Board May Forego Buying Out Superintendent Valentine’s Contract, Saving her $18,000

| January 7, 2014

School Board Attorney Kristy Gavin is recommending that the board not buy out the $75,000 and six months remaining on Superintendent Janet Valentine’s contract, since the board would owe her benefits through July, and Assistant Superintendent Jacob Oliva is running the district with no plans of having the permanent position filled until July 1.

A Flagler Farewell to 2013: The Local Year in Review

| January 1, 2014

A tornado, plane crashes and mishaps, Flagler County going bonkers for clunkers, a spate of murders in Palm Coast, Flagler Beach’s firehouse follies, Bunnell’s reality show: 2013 is ending not a moment too soon. But first, a review.

Matanzas High Community Awakens to Suicide of One of Its Own, 9th Grader Dalton Coxwell

| December 19, 2013

Dalton Coxwell, a 9th grader at Matanzas High School, hung himself at his home in Palm Coast the afternoon of Dec. 18. The school is responding to students’ grief with a stepped-up presence of administrators and counselors while a school board member asks that social media be monitored.

With 78% of High Schools Rated A or B, Tougher Standards Will Kick In Next Year

| December 18, 2013

Matanzas maintained its A, making it the third A since the school opened in 2006. FPC improved from a B, earning an A for only the second time in 13 years. But a state rule calls for automatically tougher standards when more than 75 percent of schools in the state earn an A or a B.

Superintendent Valentine Will Not Return to Work; “Expedited” Search Will Continue

| December 17, 2013

The Flagler County School Board will look to buy out Janet Velentine’s contract, which runs through June. An attempt to appoint Jacob Oliva superintendent fell short as the board decided to stuck with an expedited search and a Feb. 4 appointment.

Flagler Schools Improve Graduation Rate For 5th Year in a Row, to 76.6%; Black Rate Lags

| December 13, 2013

Flagler’s rate improves from last year’s 74.8 percent, and is up significantly from the 2008-09 rate, when it was 65.1 percent. But the graduation rate of 67.9 percent among black students continues to lag, adding to pressure on the district that it’s not doing enough to address a vast gap between white and black achievement.

Inquiry Into 4th Grader’s Suspension at Palm Harbor Charter School Raises Concerns of Arbitrary Discipline and Due Process

| December 12, 2013

The Flagler County school district is investigating the case of a fourth grade girl who was suspended from Palm Harbor Academy, the Palm Coast charter school, for two days in late November without documented due process, and in apparent violation of school policy and safety standards.

As Superintendent Search Committee Meets, A Ringer for Board’s Favorite Leads the Way

| December 10, 2013

If there was any doubt left that the Flagler County School Board intends to leave little to chance as it steers its way to the appointment of Jacob Oliva as its next superintendent, that doubt was dispelled Tuesday afternoon when the board’s 15-member search committee met for the first time.

School Board Honors John Winston, Tireless Advocate of Flagler’s African-American Mentor Program

| December 6, 2013

At 76, John Winston has continued to be the leading force behind the Flagler school district’s African-American Mentor Program, which pairs young boys and men in need of solid direction with adults who take on the role of father figures. Winston is himself the patriarch of a family of seven children and three dozen grandchildren.

Superintendent Jacob Oliva: School Board Frames a Near-Certainty In Pro-Forma Search

| December 5, 2013

It is almost a certainty that come Feb. 4, Jacob Oliva will be named Flagler County’s new school superintendent, but the school board has appointed a 15-member search committee to broaden public input, vet Oliva and avoid accusations of reaching a pre-determined conclusion. Nevertheless, Oliva’s favored status has rankled some members of the black community.

School Enrollment Stabilizes But Remains Below Last Year’s, With Decreases Projected

| December 4, 2013

As of the end of November, the district had 12,794 students. The good news is that the district saw enrollment rise for the past two months, but the number is still 100 students below last November’s, with projected declines of 1 to 2 percent between January and May, which may have ripple effects on the economy.

Burdens and Costs Pile Up for School Board’s Ex-ITT Building on Corporate Drive, Disrupting Community Education

| November 13, 2013

The board bought the 54,000 square-foot building for $3.5 million in 2001 and housed the Flagler Technical Institute’s community education classes and offices there, but the building must be evacuated either by January or by summer and either rebuilt and renovated at costs approaching $5 million or demolished even as the district continues to pay $445,000 in annual debt service on it.

Two Flagler School Buses Stolen in July Are Recovered, But District Just Bought Replacements

| November 6, 2013

Alphonso Bernard Rock of Jacksonville was arrested in connection with the stolen buses, recovered in Gainesville Wednesday, but the buses no longer belong to the school district, which on Tuesday approved an $812,700 purchase of seven new buses, including two with the insurance-recovery money.

School District, County’s Largest Employer, Starts Health Clinic Experiment With Florida Hospital Flagler

| October 30, 2013

The $288,000 annual contract with Florida Hospital Flagler’s Prompt Care Clinic will allow 1,400 of the school district’s 1,700 employees to seek out primary care at no cost, but with some restrictions. The district hopes it will lower the annual increases in premiums that employees and taxpayers have been bearing.

Learning To Love Flagler’s IB Program: Students Turn Myth-Busters For 400 People

| October 29, 2013

A pair of introductory meetings about FPC’s IB program, for students from 5th grade and up, drew more than 400 people who heard from IB students eager to demolish false impressions and stereotypes about the program and encourage more parents to sign up their children for Flagler County schools’ crown jewel.

School Board Members Don Aprons and Wait Tables in All-Day Fundraiser at Bob Evans Today

| October 24, 2013

Until 9 tonight, 15 percent of sales attached to the Flagler school district’s fundraiser at Bob Evans in Palm Coast will go to a special fund for needy students. School board members, the superintendent and other top district staffers are participating in hopes of drawing patrons.

Rep. Travis Hutson Will File a Bill on Animal Abuse Reporting Proposed by Flagler Students

| October 23, 2013

Florida Rep. Travis Hutson worked for weeks with FPC and Matanzas High students on a mock legislative process that culminated today in a student vote choosing actual bill Hutson will file at the Legislature in the coming session. The exercise gave students direct insights into the legislative process.

Beyond Rebecca Sedwick’s Suicide: Colleen Conklin Campaigns for More Cyberbullying Awareness

| October 22, 2013

More laws, mandates and prohibitions won’t work, Flagler County School Board member Colleen Conklin says, but more current awareness of the variety of online apps and social sites, where cyberbullying thrives, and more responsibility from both teens and their parents, are more likely to stem a pattern of bullying-induced teen suicides.

Easter Seals Becomes Latest Charter Applicant Rejected by Defensive Flagler School Board

| October 17, 2013

Counting Easter Seals, which planned to open two small charter schools for disabled 3 and 4 year olds, no fewer than eight applications for charter schools have been filed in Flagler in the last two years. Six were withdrawn, and two were rejected by the school board, which also forced once charter to close and saw another fail in mid-year and close shop.

Flagler’s Teachers Still Waiting on Their $1,900 Raise as District and Union Negotiate Contract

| October 10, 2013

Flagler’s teachers are in the same situation as teachers in 53 other counties where negotiations with unions have delayed the raises. A sticking point in Flagler: the district wants the authority to renegotiate annual “step” raises, while the union wants those step increases to continue to be awarded automatically, as they have been to date.

Town Hall Road Show: Residents Grill 4 Local Governments’ Heads in Freewheeling Forum

| October 9, 2013

A 90-minute town hall forum brought some 50 people to the Palm Coast Community Center to grill and hear Flagler County Commission Chairman Nate McLaughlin, Flagler Sheriff Jim Manfre, School Board Chairman Andy Dance, and Palm Coast City Council member Jason DeLorenzo address a long list of public concerns in a rare and informal cross-agency discussion.

Matanzas High School’s Surging SAT Scores Brighten Otherwise Dimmer District Results

| October 3, 2013

In a tribute to the school’s SAT prep classes, Matanzas’ reading average of 502 on the SAT test exceeded state and national averages, and the school exceeded state averages on math and writing, but district-wide 2013 SAT and ACT scores remain below state and national averages, dragged down especially by math scores.

Flagler School District Lauds “Culture of Innovation” in State of Education Address

| October 1, 2013

Tuesday evening’s State of Education Address highlighted what the district survived through the last few years of contraction, where it is today, what challenges it is facing in the next few years, and how it intends to tangle with those challenges.

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