Parent Edition

It’s That Time of Year!

Sunshine State Readers 16-17The Sunshine State Young Reader Award books for 2017-18 have arrived!

Picture this: children standing outside the public library’s automatic sliding doors during the month of May. Sweat beading down their young faces as they grip in their hands the list of all lists, the Sunshine State Young Reader Awards (SSYRA) book list for 2017!

Will your favorite book be on the shelf?

The Sunshine State books are coveted and hoarded by children all over the state of Florida each year. These titles literally fly off the shelves of stores and public libraries. Libraries have wait lists 50 students long waiting for the popular titles to become available.

Amazon.com stocks up on these books and Barnes & Noble piles them 10 books deep on tables with the title “Sunshine State Award Books” each summer knowing families are looking specifically for these hot titles! Continue reading


FLVS Corkboard: May Highlights

May Corkboard“Another May new buds and flowers shall bring: Ah! why has happiness no second Spring?” ― Charlotte Smith

We don’t know about you, but we’re getting excited that summer is almost here! We are so incredibly happy that you’ve been a part of the FLVS family—it’s been an awesome year and there’s been much to celebrate.

FLVS Selects New President & CEO

The FLVS Board of Trustees is happy to announce the appointment of Dr. Jodi Marshall, Executive Vice President, Business and School Solutions, as the new President and CEO of FLVS effective July 1, 2017. Dr. Marshall, a visionary leader and innovator who embodies the values of FLVS, will work together with Ronald Blocker to ensure a smooth transition upon his departure June 30.

Dr. Marshall has held many positions leading up to her current role over Business and School Solutions including English instructor, Principal, and Vice President of Instruction, since she joined the FLVS family in 2002. Her experience and her dedication to our students, parents, schools, and districts will allow her to continue to drive FLVS forward.   Continue reading


FLVS Flex Elementary Gives Students Unique Opportunities

This article was originally written and published in the FLVS student newspaper, News in a Click.

FLVS Flex Elementary InfoThe Florida Virtual School Flex Elementary program provides students with a flexible learning schedule and opportunities to pursue passions such as gymnastics, coding, or art at a young age.

“The program was created and is centered around the students,” said Rick Rizzo, FLVS Flex Instructional Leader. The program typically consists of five comprehensive classes: Reading, Technology, Science, Social Studies and Mathematics.

The typical week for a student includes three independent working days, and two teacher-led days of class time, comparable to the live lessons from the middle and high school program of FLVS. “The Class Time sessions allow the teacher and students to develop positive relationships and create a school/classroom community,” said Rizzo. “The students enjoy interacting with the teacher and really get excited to see their online friends each week.” Continue reading


We Appreciate Our FLVS Flex Elementary Teachers!

Blog_Elementary_TAW_170417The primary goal of FLVS Flex Elementary is to serve the students and families of Florida within a creative learning atmosphere utilizing a highly-effective curriculum.

Satisfied students create satisfied families, which is a direct result of our highly-effective teachers.

Our Flex Elementary teachers are collaborative educators that believe all students can and will learn. Families are grateful for our personalized approach to instruction that allows each student to meet and exceed expectations. Students excel in our online Class Time sessions and appreciate the warm and supportive environment that helps them connect with their teachers. We established Class Time so students would collaborate with peers and benefit from direct teacher instruction.

These benefits and the effectiveness of our instructors has established the FLVS Flex Elementary program as an exceptional school option for families and young students across the state of Florida. Continue reading


A Teacher Is…

Celebrate Teacher Appreciation WeekWhat is the definition of a teacher?

As described in many dictionaries, a teacher is a person who teaches or instructs, especially as a profession.

While this definition is accurate, I hope you will agree with me that it does not sufficiently describe all that a teacher embodies.

This week, Florida Virtual School is celebrating Teacher Appreciation Week, and I’d like to expand on the definition of a teacher.

At FLVS, our teachers are superheroes. While they do not wear eye masks or fancy capes, they possess special super powers. They are passionate and dedicated to working with all students, recognizing that each learner is unique and has individual strengths and needs. They go beyond educating—they listen, guide, support, and inspire.

We recently asked our staff to come up with their own definition of a teacher. Here are a few of the responses we received to our “A Teacher is…” challenge: Continue reading


10 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day

Blog_Earth_Day_2017Earth Day is full of reminders to take time to protect our planet.

Across the state of Florida, local events are planned to pick up trash on the beach, recognize local farmers, and celebrate science and its contributions to ensuring everyone has access to clean water, soil, and air.

Search local events on Facebook to find fairs, speakers, art vendors, and other resources that promote an awareness of sustainable life choices.

Are you volunteering anywhere for Earth Day? Tell us where in the comments below!

Whether you’re heading out for the day or plan to stay at home, these tips can help you make a difference on Earth Day – and every other day too! Continue reading


FLVS Corkboard: April Highlights

Corkboard April 2017April showers may bring May flowers, but both months ultimately mean…we’re sailing into summer!

Speaking of cruising…

Shakespeare Fest 2017 was a great success! For those who were unable to attend or want to catch up on a session they missed, leave us a comment below to request the recordings!

Thank you to all of the teachers, sponsors, and student presenters who helped to make this such a spectacular event!

And while we’re on the subject of thanking teachers, don’t forget that Teacher Appreciation Week begins Monday, May 1. If you have an outstanding teacher you’d like to give a shout out to, consider posting a personal message on the FLVS Facebook page or on Instagram or Twitter using hashtag #FLVSTAW.

They appreciate YOU and your words of encouragement so much! Continue reading


Pinwheels for Prevention

This post was written in recognition of Child Abuse Prevention Month.

Pinwheels for PreventionMy first realization that not all parents behave as loving parents was in the third grade with news that Penny’s mom had hit her over the head with a trophy. It was shocking, as child abuse was not a topic you typically heard of in the 70s, but conversations soon sprouted throughout our small suburban school and community.

Fast forward to today, and news of children being neglected and abused is far too prevalent.

Every child deserves to grow up in a safe and loving environment and it is our duty as parents, educators—as humans—to look after them.

Over the past few weeks, you may have noticed pinwheels have popped up in your community and throughout Florida. A ceremony was held in Tallahassee earlier this month on the lawn of the Turlington Building, which serves as the home of the Florida Department of Education. These pinwheels represent Pinwheels for Prevention, a national campaign that engages communities in a coordinated effort to prevent child abuse. Continue reading


FLVS Day at the Capitol

Day at the Capitol

Pictured from left to right: Adriana, Andrew, and Branden with FLVS Communications Specialists Diana Furey & Suzan Kurdak

If you ask me, there is nothing like the rush of sharing with our state legislators the unique ways FLVS serves Florida students, and it’s even better when students themselves get to share their stories.

On April 5, 2017, that’s exactly what happened in Tallahassee.

Florida Virtual School executives, board members, staff, parents, and students walked into the state Capitol with a mission.

It was FLVS Day at the Capitol and we wanted our state Senators and Representatives to know how important access to virtual education is for students of all ages. Right now, students in grades 2-5 wishing to take FLVS courses on a part-time basis have to meet a list of eligibility requirements, with the most problematic being that they must have been enrolled in a Florida public school the entire year prior.

House Bill 833 and Senate Bills 868 and 692 remove those eligibility requirements.

Passing these bills means FLVS Flex Elementary students can continue their education with FLVS, allowing them to learn from the hospital, abroad, and from home without restriction. Continue reading


Make, Bake, Partake – Volunteering at School

Blog_School_Volunteer_20170420My mom was blessed with the baking and hospitality gene. As far back as I can recall, she loved to play hostess—still does, and when people come over, she has a quiet way of honoring them and making them feel special. It shows in the details, from a sparkling clean house to using the good dishes and serving delectable treats.

I remember my mom volunteered to be the class mom for Mrs. Kast’s second grade class in New York. I glowed whenever she’d come into my classroom to drop off some cut outs for a project we were working on, or when she’d bring in homemade cupcakes for a class party. And while I just thought I had the coolest mom in the world, she had sneakily found a way to stay connected to me during the school day.

April is Florida School Volunteer Appreciation Month and today marks the first day of Public School Volunteer Week.  Continue reading