Pinellas board to honor safe school bus drivers
The Pinellas County School Board voted this week to formally recognize 75 school bus drivers who have worked 10 or more consecutive years with no accidents or traffic citations. They will be honored at a luncheon on Wednesday. The top 20 drivers are Ruth Cobarras, Charles Russell and Yvonne Taylor, 23 years; Joann Pierce, 21 years; Stephanie Holmes, 19 years; Janet Nusspickel and Ethel Wilson, 18 years; Wayne Depouw, Calandra Jones, Loretta Poole and Lissa Youmans, 17 years; Valita Jackson, Debra Jones, Terriel Lucas, Sonya Roundtree and Lashang Simmons, 16 years; and Annie Bethune-Walker, Marcus Hart, Carolyn Rogers and Michael Weaver, 15 years.
Financial Aid Nights next week
Students preparing for college and their parents have two more chances to attend a Financial Aid Nights organized by the Pinellas County school system. Families can learn about the college application process, get information on scholarships including Florida Bright Futures, and find out how to submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, known as the FAFSA. The schedule for filing the FAFSA has changed significantly this year — students and their parents now can submit the application as early as Oct. 1, allowing families to understand their financial aid options well before college acceptance deadlines. The two events will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. Monday at Osceola Fundamental High and Tuesday at Northeast High.
Community meetings to focus on achievement gap
A series of community meetings on the achievement gap in Pinellas County continues with a session scheduled from 6-7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Boca Ciega High, 924 58th St. S in Gulfport. The public is invited to hear about the school system's plans for bridging the gap and give input. Each meeting includes a short presentation on the district's approach to closing the gap between black and nonblack students, and a summary of proposed action. Most of the time will be spent in small-group discussions. Additional meetings are scheduled for Nov. 1 at Gibbs High and Nov. 15 at Tarpon Springs High.
Honors and awards
Artwork by Perkins Elementary students is on display in the main hallway at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital. … Michelle Roberge, Family and Community Area Coordinator for the Pinellas school district, recently won the 2016 Adele Graham Award given by the Florida Association of Partners in Education, or FAPE. Named for the wife of former Gov. Bob Graham, the award recognizes FAPE leaders who have "worked tirelessly to build the statewide school volunteer program infrastructure that Florida enjoys today." … Solomon J. Lowery, principal of Azalea Middle, recently was one of 30 veterans in Florida to receive the Governor's Veterans Service Award. Lowery served in the U.S. Army.
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Elementary school lunch menus
Monday: Max sticks, Mandarin chicken bowl with roll, chef salad, turkey and cheese hoagie, marinara cup, stir fry vegetable, veggie dippers.
Tuesday: School Favorites Day.
Wednesday: Chicken drumstick with hush puppy, macaroni and cheese, yogurt parfait, ham and cheese croissant, sweet potato waffle fries, sliced cucumbers.
Thursday: Beef or pork tacos, mini calzones, farmer's salad, chicken caesar wrap, marinara cup, refried fiesta beans, mixed or tossed side salad.
Friday: Pizza, fish cake sandwich with cheese, chicken caesar salad, Italian sub, spinach or collard greens, veggie dippers.