Color of Our Worlds February 2020

Educating ALL Students for Success!

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ELL Acommodations Extended to Exited Students for 1-2 Years!

The Florida Department of State approved an amendment on December 22, 2019 to State Rule 6A-6.09091 that is a game changer for our recently exited ELL students.

Currently, students that are identified LY or active support students in our ELL Program, receive accommodations for state testing.


Accommodations shall include:

(a) Flexible Setting. ELLs may be offered the opportunity to be tested in a separate room with the English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) or heritage language teacher serving as test administrator. Parents must be informed of this option for students not of legal age and shall be given the opportunity to select the preferred method of test administration.

(b) Flexible Scheduling. ELLs may take a test session during several brief periods within one (1) school day; however, each test session must be completed within one (1) school day. ELLs may be provided additional time to complete a test session; however, each test session must be completed within one (1) school day.

(c) Assistance in the Heritage Language. ELLs may be provided limited assistance by an ESOL or heritage language teacher using the student’s heritage language for directions, prompts, items, and answer choices. This should not be interpreted as permission to provide oral presentation of prompts, items, and answer choices in English or in the student’s heritage language. Assistance may not be provided for passages in Reading and Writing tests. Assistance in the heritage language shall be limited to the following:


This made it difficult for newly exited students as they took the state assessments for the first time without accommodations. So, the state approved the same accommodations to students that have been exited for 1 - 2 years.
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ELLs and recently exited ELLs may be offered the opportunity to be tested in a separate room with the English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) or heritage language teacher serving as test administrator. Parents/guardians must be informed of this option for students not of legal age and shall be given the opportunity to select the preferred method of test administration.
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ELLs and recently exited ELLs may take a test session during several brief periods within one school day; however, each test session must be completed within one school day.


• ELLs and recently exited ELLs may be provided additional time to complete a test session; however, each test session must be completed within one school day.

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ELLs and recently exited ELLs may be provided limited assistance by an ESOL or heritage language teacher using the student’s heritage language for directions, prompts, items, and answer choices. This should not be interpreted as permission to provide oral presentation of prompts, items, and answer choices in English or in the student’s heritage language. Assistance may not be provided for words or phrases in ELA Reading and ELA Writing passages.


• For students who are both ELLs or recently exited ELLs and have an IEP or Section 504 Plan that allows oral presentation, the oral presentation must be in English and not in the studentʼs heritage language. These students may still receive limited assistance in their heritage language.


• The ESOL or heritage language teacher or other trained individual familiar with the student may answer questions about the general test directions in the student’s heritage language. If the test is administered to a group of students, the teacher may answer questions about directions for the benefit of the group. Questions of clarification from individual students must be answered on an individual basis without disturbing other students.


• The ESOL or heritage language teacher or other trained individual familiar with the student may answer specific questions about a word or phrase in a prompt, item, or answer choice that is confusing the student because of limited English proficiency but is prohibited from giving assistance that will help the student produce, correct, or edit responses. Assistance may not be provided for words or phrases in ELA Reading or ELA Writing passages.

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ELLs and recently exited ELLs should have access to an English-to-heritage language translation and/or heritage language-to-English translation dictionary or glossary or both, such as those made available to ELLs and recently exited ELLs in an instructional setting. Glossaries containing content specific word-to-word translations in heritage language can also be provided. The dictionary or glossary must provide word-to-word translations only and may not contain definitions or other information. A dictionary or glossary written exclusively in the heritage language or in English shall not be provided. Electronic translation dictionaries or glossaries that meet the same requirements without accessing the Internet may be used.

The Martin County School District's Head Start and Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK) programs will begin accepting applications for the 2020-2021 school year in February.


The Head Start program will begin accepting applications on Tuesday, February 4.


The VPK programs at Bessey Creek Elementary, Citrus Grove Elementary, Crystal Lake Elementary, Felix A. Williams Elementary, Hobe Sound Elementary, Jensen Beach Elementary and Palm City Elementary will begin accepting applications at 8:00 a.m. on Monday, February 3.


The VPK programs at J.D. Parker Elementary, the Salerno Learning Center and Warfield Elementary will begin accepting applications at 8:00 a.m. on Monday, February 10.


Click here: Learn more about the programs and registration process.

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3 Students in Title I Schools Place in Top in Elementary Spelling Bee!

The Martin County School District held its 54th annual Lillian A. Dassori Elementary Spelling Bee on Thursday, January 23, at Jensen Beach High School. Superintendent Laurie J. Gaylord served as the enunciator for this year’s event, which saw students from each local elementary school competing for the chance to win the prestigious Lillian A. Dassori Spelling Bee award.


Named after Lillian A. Dassori, a founding member and charter president of the Soroptomist International of Stuart, the bee provides Martin County’s youngest students with an opportunity to practice their spelling and public speaking skills while also increasing their vocabularies.


This year’s competition lasted 11 rounds, with Nina Goyal of Palm City Elementary School taking home first place honors for the second consecutive year. She will advance to the regional competition with the hopes of ultimately competing at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in May.


“The Lillian A. Dassori Elementary Spelling Bee is always one of the highlights of the school year in Martin County,” Superintendent Laurie J. Gaylord shared. “We know that literacy and students’ command of language is so important, and it’s always a joy to watch our youngest learners demonstrate their abilities during the spelling bee.”


The District would like to congratulate all of this year’s participants, with a special kudos going out to our Title I school winners:

10th place – Barry Carson, Pinewood Elementary School
9th place – Gabriel Abad, Indiantown Middle School (5th grade)

6th place – Ana Rodriguez Castell, Port Salerno Elementary School

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AMS Student places 4th in Middle School Spelling Bee


Congratulations to Gavin Boggs of Anderson Middle School, who placed 4th in competition.


The Martin County School District held its annual Middle School Spelling Bee at South Fork High School on January 15, 2020. More than 40 of the District's top spellers from each of the five middle schools participated in this year's Bee, tackling the spelling of words such as "quotidian", "albeit" and "guffaw." The winning word was "ancillary."

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Martin County Kids Tag Art (KTA) Program

Martin County Tax Collector office is proud to claim the leadership role in implementing and supervising kids TAG ART project in elementary schools of our county. Thanks to the close cooperation and support of the Martin County School District and business partners, our 5th graders express themselves by creating unique designs, compete for the awards and their work is available for purchase . All profits from the sale go back into the classroom to support art education. Please, recognize our partners, as the KTA program brings great value to all involved.

Hobe Sound Elementary Participates in KTA

Parent Resources

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Learning Together at Home

When you are with your child, there is a lot that you can learn together! This section has all kinds of ideas for activities that you can do around the house, outside, in your neighborhood, and during vacations at different times of year. It also has ideas related to math and science that are easy to try at home (like sorting socks). Try some of these out, and if you find an activity that your child enjoys, look for different ways and places to try it, or share it with your child’s teacher — you may find something that other kids and families will enjoy too!


Recommended Resource from Understood.org

For more great ideas, take a look at the bilingual resources on Learning Together at Home from Understood.org, a free website focused on learning and attention issues.

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Stories for the Chinese New Year! Year of the Rat!

Many people around the world celebrate the Chinese New Year (sometimes referred to as the Lunar New Year or Spring Festival), and we've compiled a list of colorful children's books to accompany the festivities! Whether it's hanging spring-happiness poems or the exciting awakening of the dragon, these books capture the rich sense of tradition and renewal with which families sweep out the old year and welcome the new.
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School Happenings

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Hobe Sound Nature Center at HSE!

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VPK was Off to See the World during CLW!

On, Wednesday, January 29th at 9:00 am, VPK students across the Martin County School District participated in a simultaneous read aloud of Eric Carle's Rooster's Off to See the World as part of the Department of Education / Office of Early Learning's Celebrate Literacy, Florida! BOOK Your Trip: Adventure Awaits 2020 campaign. VPK students at Port Salerno Learning Center had the honor of hosting a guest reader, Mrs. Barbara Clowdus, an Early Learning Coalition of Indian River, Martin and Okeechobee counties board member. As a follow up activity, students made story bracelets with different colored beads representing the animals in the story to wear around campus and take home to verbally share the story with friends and family. Creative and fun experiences like this are just a snapshot of what we to do create lifelong readers in VPK each day!

David Anderson Middle School

David Anderson Middle School kicked off the week’s announcements with Famous First Lines. Students had a chance to guess the book from which they came.

SeaWind Elementary School

Palm Beach resident and mental health advocate Loverly Sheridan, author of Be a Buddy, Not a Bully, visited Sea Wind Elementary and spoke with students about her writing craft and toured the “buddy benches” on campus.


SeaWind hosted a Love to Read event for their kindergarten and 1st grade students and parents. After the outdoor reading event, parents were invited to stay for Coffee Talks, a time for parents to ask questions and get answers from the school’s literacy coaches.


SWE AND MMS work together for literacy with Bingo for Books!

Pinewood Elementary School

Pinewood Elementary had students BOOK a Trip to the Florida Everglades at their Family Literacy and STEAM night at The Blake Library. Their passports took them to various “places” in the Everglades to learn about the animals, habitat, plants, and boating, to name a few topics.


Ms. Frazier's first-graders curled up with some great reads while enjoying the beautiful weather!

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J.D. Parker Elementary School

J.D. Parker Elementary students Map It Out – classes read books from around the world and located on a map where the country/state is in relation to Florida.

Indiantown Middle School

Indiantown Middle School students participated in various literacy opportunities connected to the author Avi and his books. The week culminated with a visit by the author himself.

Warfield Elementary School

WES is the BEST: Warfield Elementary students know that of all the places to visit, WES is the best. Students wrote about what makes Warfield so special.

Riverbend Academy

Riverbend Academy’s students participated in imaginary tourism by utilizing an online tool called Printing Press to create a travel brochure researching settings from texts they are reading.

Port Salerno Elementary School

Port Salerno Elementary students experienced Travel Tuesday while researching foods from other countries and creating restaurant menus depicting various cuisines.


Dr. Carlos Perez spent one morning reading to students at Port Salerno Elementary. His book of choice? “Duck on a Bike” by David Shannon!


City of Stuart Mayor Mike Meier visited Port Salerno Elementary School to read to students as part Florida Celebrates Literacy Week! An urban farmer by trade, Mayor Meier read a book about farming and shared stories with students about his experience owning a farm.

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Hobe Sound Elementary School

Hobe Sound Elementary’s kindergartners hitched a ride on a make-believe plane and went on a classroom word search collecting travel-themed words from around the room in their “suitcases.”

What is Your Why?

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Martin County School District is for Relationships

MCSD Superintendent Laurie J. Gaylord never misses an opportunity to mentor and and speak with students. Her visit to Indiantown Middle School resulted in smiles all around as students shared what they have been working on in class!

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Coins & More Beacuse We Care at Warfield Elementary School

Students and staff from

Warfield Elementary School

donated "Coins & More Because WE CARE" to Hurricane Dorian relief efforts in the Bahamas.
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Why building relationships with ELLs matters
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Community Resources

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Martin County School District Title I Schools and Program Staff

Elementary Schools:

 Hobe Sound Elementary

 JD Parker Elementary School

 Pinewood Elementary School

 Port Salerno Elementary School

 Seawind Elementary School

 Warfield Elementary School


Secondary Schools:

 David Anderson Middle School

 Indiantown Middle School

 Spectrum Academy

 Willoughby Learning Center


Title I Program Staff


Shela Khanal, Director of Title I Programs

khanals@martin.k12.fl.us


Debra George, Coordinator of Title I Programs

georged@martin.k12.fl.us


Deb Stull, Coordinator District Title Programs: ELL, Immigrant, and FIT

stulld@martin.k12.fl.us


Casey Vasko, Federal Programs/ Equitable Services Liaison

vaskoc@martin.k12.fl.us


Yvonne Blanco, Title I Department Secretary

blancoy@martin.k12.fl.us