WTC Nursing Program is Top Ranked

WTC Nursing Program is Top Ranked

Congratulations to WTC on being one of the TOP LPN Programs in Florida!

WTC-1On Tuesday Withlacoochee Technical College received news from Bryce Hall, president of PracticalNursing.org WTC was ranked 3rd in the state for their LPN nursing training program.  Hall said, “On behalf of our team, I am pleased to inform you that Withlacoochee Technical College’s nursing program has been ranked as one of the top 30 LPN programs in the state of Florida!”

Miami & Dade County’s Jersey College was ranked 1st and Winter Parks Herzing University was ranked 2nd.  Hall went on to share about how programs are selected, “LPN programs were assessed on several factors which represent how well a program supports students towards licensure and beyond. For example, we analyzed past and present NCLEX-PN “pass-rates” – weighted by year. You can learn more about the methodology used here: http://www.practicalnursing.org/lvn-lpn-ranking-methodology

Let’s congratulations to the entire LPN and WTC teams on this exciting accomplishment!

Follow this link for a full list of programs: http://www.practicalnursing.org/lvn-programs/florida

Rep. Massullo on Gradebook Podcast

MassulloRep. Massullo on Gradebook Podcast

Tampa Bay Times Gradebook Podcast has as guest Rep Ralph Massullo to talk about his educational bills. These educational bills are good for students, teachers and schools and bring a common sense approach to improving our public education system in Florida.

Thank you to Rep. Ralph Massullo and Tampa Bay Times Jeffrey S. Solochek for this excellent information.

Jeffrey Solochek reporter for Tampa Bay Times hosts Gradebook Podcast

Jeffrey Solochek reporter for Tampa Bay Times hosts Gradebook Podcast

Please take a minute and listen to this podcast: http://www.tampabay.com/blogs/gradebook/gradebook-podcast-state-rep-ralph-massullo-on-compromise-and-legislation/2313967

Tech Geeks’ Meeting

Tech Geeks’ Meeting

Educational Technology Council

Tina Hacky, the Media Technology Specialist at Citrus Springs Elementary School shared about the Ozobot, a robot for teaching students to program.

Tina Hackey, the Media Technology Specialist at Citrus Springs Elementary School shared about the Ozobot, a robot for teaching students to program.

On Thursday, I attended our quarterly school district’s Educational Technology Council meeting, which brings together school base technology specialist and technicians. This is always an important opportunity for these team members to come together.  These technology experts are on the front lines of our curriculum, digital assessments, technology initiatives and state mandates.

In today’s classrooms nearly every aspect of teaching and learning uses technology. From the overhead projectors, cameras, to the teacher’s computer, to the student’s iPads, to the many many different software and apps. Our technology specialist and technicians play a critical and essential role in making everything work and helping developers curriculum solutions for the classroom.

These are such dedicated individuals that are having to manage a massive growing and challenging necessary infrastructure. They are often having to use creative means to stay ahead of issues. While they cannot continue to do so, these individuals have had to manage massive increases in hardware and have done these implementations with their existing resources saving the district thousands of dollars and making learning more engaging and relevant.

Director of Instructional Technology, Dr. Mike Geddes shared about our district's growing network bandwidth requirements.

Director of Instructional Technology, Dr. Mike Geddes shared about our district’s growing network bandwidth requirements.

Director of Instructional Technology, Dr. Mike Geddes shared about our district’s growing network bandwidth requirements. Network bandwidth needs of our schools and district have increased from 100MB in 2011 to 2000MB in 2017 and we are headed to 5000MB within just a short time. What is driving this? Textbook adoption is required to be digital, along with our supplemental, enrichment and intervention curriculums is increasing bandwidth usage. The current cost of this bandwidth is approximately $40,000 a month, but thankfully 80% of that cost is paid for not out of our school’s general fund but through rebates through E-Rate. E-Rate is the Schools and Libraries Program of the Universal Service Fund, which is administered by the Universal Service Administrative Company under the direction of the Federal Communications Commission.

At the meeting ‘techs’ have the opportunity to share their knowledge, tricks and tools with one another. District Technology Specialist, Matt Biggs shared about a learning and programming tool/toy called “Sphero SPRK+” which students can program the “Sphero” ball to move as the students’ learn coding to program the ball’s paths. Tina Hackey, the Media Technology Specialist at Citrus Springs Elementary School shared about another exciting robot for students to program, the Ozobot. We are seeing these tools in our schools in MakerSpace areas. Rachel Drummond, the Technology Specialist from Inverness Middle School shared about Google Translate to communicate with now English speaking students. Google Translate app allows you to have your mobile device camera in real-time look at text on a sign or paper and translate it as they are looking at it. This tool is assisting students to learn while they are learning their new language, and it is helping teachers and students to better communicate and build relationships.

This is always an informative meeting and I walk away grateful that my own children are in a school district that have these dedicated and technology committed individuals. They are bettering students to have the knowledge and experience to be more successful in their individual future college and careers.

LPS is PANTHER STRONG

LPS is PANTHER STRONG

IMG_1910-COLLAGE(1)Visited Lecanto Primary School today.  What exciting learning that was going on. Got to spend some time in Ms. Paprzycki STEM/Marker Space lab for “Marker Space-Monday”, learned about “beats” in Mrs. Messenger music class, and dropped in on Ms. Willoughby’s class playing Kahoot!.

IMG_1911-COLLAGE(1)It was spring cleaning time at Lecanto Primary School today as Head Custodian Terri Sterling worked hard racking out the fall leaves and making the grounds look amazing.

The school is “PANTHER STRONG”!

Chronicle Editorial Board Give Thumbs Up to Educational Pathways Bill

Chronicle Editorial Board Give Thumbs Up to Educational Pathways Bill

Chronicle say Rep. Ralph Massullo’s “House Bill 407 is a common sense initiative”

39249-8I wanted to thank you the Citrus Chronicle for their support of Rep. Massullo’s educational bills and for their editorial in Thursday’s paper, ‘Massullo bill seeks necessary balance’.

The Editorial Board stated, “The bill’s multiple pathways importantly recognize a student’s performance and potential should not be simply defined by a single standardized test score, but by his or her individual educational aspirations, abilities and mastery.”  The Editorial Board went on to say, “Rep. Massullo’s interest in listening to the concerns of local educators about the state’s reliance on standardized tests for the awarding of a high school diploma and his willingness to challenge conventional thinking with the filing of HB 407 are applauded.”

I wanted to update that Rep. Massullo got Senator Debbie Mayfield to file identical companion bills for HB 6015 (SB 782) High School Graduation Requirements’ and HB 591 (SB 808) ‘Maximum Class Size’.  In addition, Rep. Jason Fischer agreed to co-sponsor HB591.  Rep. Massullo is working with Sen. Montford and other Senators on his major educational pathways bill, HB 407 ‘Alternative High School Graduation Requirements’ and I have confidence he will be successful with that bill as well.

Follow this link to read the entire Chronicle Editorial: http://www.chronicleonline.com/content/massullo-bill-seeks-necessary-balance

County High School Student College & Career Fair

County High School Student College & Career Fair

16300424_10154795966801259_1165242343048782482_o 16402842_10154795966231259_8394208565184387367_o 16487053_10154795964881259_2860872228016245919_oLast week high school students from around the county came to Lecanto High School to the annual ‘County High School Student College & Career Fair’.

This outstanding event happens ​with the collaboration of Citrus County Education Foundation, Junior Achievement and LHS Administrator Shawyn Newman.

This event is an outstanding opportunity for both s16463025_10154795968791259_1422297965344134023_otudents, business and post-secondary schools to connect.  Business, and schools setup booths and bring their staff to talk to students about college and career opportunities.

Many of our Citrus county high school students already have career and technical certifications. Each school year Citrus county high school students take industry courses and certification exams and received approximately 500 certifications each school year.  This helps students in their post high school careers and provides students with opportunities to go directly into the workforce or help them pay for their post-secondary education.

Plans are underway for next year’s County High School Student College & Career Fair 2018.  Cannot wait to see how this great event continues to grow!

Here is a list of just some of the industry certifications our students receive:

  • Certified Nursing Assistant -State of Florida
  • Biotechnician Assistant Credentialed (BACE) – University of Florida
  • Agricultural Technician – Florida Farm Bureau
  • ServSafe – National Restaurant Assocaiation
  • ProStart National Certificate of Achievement (COA) – National Restaurant Assocaiation
  • App-Mechanical Drafting – American Design Drafting Association
  • Prof-Mechanical Drafting – American Design Drafting Association
  • App-Architectural Drafting – American Design Drafting Association
  • Prof-Architectural Drafting – American Design Drafting Association
  • Adobe Dreamweaver – Adobe
  • Adobe PhotoShop – Adobe
  • MS Office Specialist – Microsoft
  • MS Office Master – Microsoft
  • Quick Books – Intuit