The Connection

Connecting you to the School District of Indian River County

Welcome to the Connection!

Welcome to The Connection, our new weekly newsletter connecting you to important news, events, and activities happening in the School District of Indian River County. This newsletter will highlight events throughout all grade levels and include district news. We are looking forward to your input in The Connection and hope that you will submit important news and information to be considered for publishing. Please email socialmedia@indianriverschools.org to submit potential highlights.

Welcome, new Board members

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Dr. Mara Schiff

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Mrs. Teri Barenborg

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Mrs. Jacqueline Rosario

Magnet School registration

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The School District of Indian River County will be accepting magnet school applications between December 1, 2018, and February 1, 2019, for the kindergarten classes of 2019 – 2020. In order to enter kindergarten for the next school year, students must be 5 years old on or before September 1, 2019. Applications will be accepted until February 1, 2019, at 5 p.m. Kindergarten slots are filled by a lottery conducted in mid February. Families may indicate only ONE choice of a magnet school. The three magnet schools in Indian River County are Osceola Magnet, with a math and science focus; Rosewood Magnet, with a Core-Knowledge curriculum, and Liberty Magnet, with an international studies focus. Families who apply for their student to attend a magnet school must agree to follow the requirements of the Magnet School Commitments. Applications can be picked up at the School District office at 6500 57th Street or any of the magnet schools.

Student applications will be given a computer generated number to determine their rank in the lottery. Families will be notified by mail of their acceptance or non-acceptance. Kindergarten siblings of students currently attending one of the three magnet schools will automatically be accepted if they have an application on file by 5:00 pm on February 1, 2019.

Re-Book to Rebuild

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Most of us saw the devastation unfold in the panhandle as they were struck by hurricane Michael. After the storm, it was obvious that several of our Florida school districts were devastated, and would need assistance in several forms to rebuild. Initially, the SDIRC, with the help of Sunrise Rotary and United Way, donated $10,000 worth of Scholastic books for children to use in shelters and while their families and school rebuilt. We also sent our mobile cafes to be used for food distribution to the panhandle to give our fellow school districts a helping hand and show them they are not alone. After a special Casual for a Cause day was added in October to raise the remainder of the money for the Scholastic books, with the help of our students, teachers, and staff donations, we surpassed our original goal of $10,000 by $5,333.64. The surplus amount was donated to the re-book to re-build program organized by the Florida Education Foundation. Our donations of the Scholastic books, mobile cafes, and contributions to the re-book to re-build program, totaling over $15,000 in books alone, will impact nearly 54,000 students who attend schools in nine different counties devastated by the storm. We couldn’t have done it without the help of our partnering organizations, and our students, teachers and staff members at each of our schools.

October's Casual for a Cause: American Cancer Society

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Each month we have an organization that we raise money for through a donation from students, teachers, and staff to dress casually on a pre-determined day. Last month our Casual for a Cause organization was the American Cancer Society which we raised $4,636.05.

STUDENt spotlight: Fellsmere Elementary School 5th Graders

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Fifth grade students from Fellsmere Elementary visited the Vero Beach Museum of Art this week. Besides exploring a few of the museum’s art pieces from the exhibit, entitled, "Made in Germany," they also enjoyed expressing their creativity in a workshop inspired by one of the installation pieces. The students learned how to “read” a painting, and had a lesson in art history at the same time.

School Spotlight: Giffod Middle School Lands on Mars!

The names of over 250 Gifford Middle School (GMS) present and former students successfully landed on Mars today!

Approximately 132 eighth graders from the 2015-16 school year signed up to send their names to Mars aboard the Insight. Their names were etched onto a chip and glued to the side of the lander, but the mission was delayed. Missing the launch window meant NASA had to wait a little more than two years until Earth and Mars would be aligned properly for a launch. While they waited for the new launch date, NASA re-opened the window to send names aboard the Insight. Last fall, an additional 130 GMS students signed up to have their names sent to Mars. Their names were etched onto another chip that was glued to the Insight. The Insight was launched in May of 2018 and traveled over 300 million miles to its final destination. Today, the Insight successfully landed on Mars! Our students are now apart of space history!

Here is the first picture the Insight sent back. The dust cap is still on the lens.

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Classroom Spotlight: Mrs. Smith and Ms. Brickles' Class, Sebastian Elementary School

Mrs. Smith and Ms. Brickles' classes from Sebastian Elementary participated in the Global Read Aloud, which provides an opportunity for students of all ages around the globe to connect with each other to discuss a common book. These classes used technology such as Skype and Flipgrid to connect with 5th grade classes in North Dakota and Indiana to read and discuss the novel Refugee.

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Veteran of the Month: Dr. A. Ronald Hudson

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Dr. Hudson was an Army staff sergeant who served in Japan and Korea during the Korean conflict. Not only is Dr. Hudson a veteran, he is also a retired administrator of our school district.

You are invited! Reserve your tickets now!

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Learning Ally for Students with disabilities and reading accommodations plans

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November's Casual for a Cause

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This month’s recipient of our Casual for a Cause fundraising efforts is the Veterans Council of Indian River County.


Please check with your schools for their Casual for a Cause participation date, and feel free to dress casually for a suggested donation of $2.00 or more.


“The Veterans Council of Indian River County, Inc. was incorporated on February 6, 1987 to support all Indian River County veterans through the collective effort of veterans' organizations, civic associations, and the local community, thereby raising awareness of veterans' needs and of their contributions to society. The VCIRC is a non-government 501(C)(3) dedicated to supporting veterans and their families. Our Mission is to support all county veterans through the collective efforts of veterans' organizations, civic associations, and the local community, thereby raising awareness of veterans' needs and of their contributions to society.”

fortifyFL security app

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We are pleased to announce that the FortifyFL app is LIVE. Now, any student, educator, parent, or member of the public can report school safety concerns directly to law enforcement and school administrators anonymously and easily through the FortifyFL app or www.getfortifyfl.com. The app, which is available for download on Apple and Android mobile devices, is critical to ensuring all Florida schools are safe environments where students and educators can experience and share the joy of learning without fear. We hope that you will become familiar with this tool and help us spread the word about it with our students and their families. Please note that the official app’s logo will look exactly as it does in the graphic above.

Support local schools, students, and teachers

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The Reading Scholarship, administered by Step Up For Students, was created to help public school students in third through fifth grade who scored a 1 or 2 on their English Language Arts FSA. The program offers parents access to education savings accounts, worth $500 each, to pay for tuition and fees related to part-time tutoring, summer and after-school literacy programs, instructional materials, and curriculum related to reading or literacy.
The scholarships are worth $500 each and can be used for reimbursement for the following:
*Tuition and fees for part-time tutoring provided by a person who holds a valid Florida educator’s certificate, a baccalaureate or graduate degree in the subject, an adjunct teaching certificate, or has demonstrated mastery of the subject area knowledge.
*Fees for summer education programs designed to improve reading or literacy skills.
*Fees for after-school education programs designed to improve reading or literacy skills.
*Instructional materials and curriculum related to reading or literacy.
Click to apply: https://www.stepupforstudents.org/for-parents/reading-scholarship/how-the-scholarship-works/

IRCSO Tips Hotline and School Tips Email

Thank you to the Indian River County Sheriff's Office and all local law enforcement agencies for your partnership with the SDIRC, and your dedication to keeping our students, teachers, and staff members safe.
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School information

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Virtual Backpack

In an effort to save resources and time required by school staff to sort and handle flyers, approved flyers will be posted on this page. Posting of flyers does not imply endorsement or recommendation by the School District of Indian River County.

School District of Indian River County's Strategic Plan

Click below to see our District's Strategic Plan

Follow Us!

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District School Board Pending Litigation Closed Session

Tuesday, Dec. 11th, 1pm

6500 57th Street

Vero Beach, FL

Please join us in the Joe N. Idlette, Jr. Teacher Education Center

SDIRC Business Meeting

Tuesday, Dec. 11th, 6pm

6500 57th Street

Vero Beach, FL

Please join us in the Joe N. Idlette, Jr. Teacher Education Center for the SDIRC Business Meeting.