Bay Meadows, Lake Whitney and more news

–compiled by Lauren Salinero–

Bay Meadows Elementary

Runners take off at the start of Bay Meadow Elementary’s annual 5K Koala Krawl.

The Bay Meadows Elementary PTA hosted its annual Festival and 5K Koala Krawl to celebrate the school’s 25th anniversary. Proceeds from the fundraising drive were donated for school programs. The day began with the Koala Krawl, a 5K that started and ended at the school and went through two local neighborhoods. The race was followed by the festival and a ceremony commemorating the anniversary.

Lake Whitney Elementary

(Front, l. to r.) Tyler Garver, Abdo Shaheen, Luke Swanson, (back, l. to r.) teacher Pat Whiffen and Cate Calvert of Lake Whitney Elementary compete as the fifth-grade team in the 2016 STEM — Science, Technology, Engineering and Math — Rube Goldberg Challenge.

Teams from Lake Whitney Elementary participated in the 2016 STEM — Science, Technology, Engineering and Math — Rube Goldberg Challenge, sponsored by Keenes Crossing Elementary and held at West Orange High. The fifth-grade team had to open a hardcover book using at least five steps and three simple machines. Coached by teacher Pat Whiffen, the fifth-graders included Cate Calvert, Tyler Garver, Abdo Shaheen and Luke Swanson. The fourth-grade team, composed of Ari Gordon, Ahyaan Khanhad and Rhea Manier, created a machine that made a sound. Students, parents and coaches were able to view the innovative inventions made by the 400 participants from 30 schools.

040716sn03_school_newsLake Whitney Elementary fifth-graders (l. to r.) Andrew White, Lilly Schlegel, BellaJolie Hernandez and Kristin Stewart are chosen as the winners of teacher Patricia Whiffen’s STEM — Science, Technology, Engineering and Math — class for building a prototype to clean up space debris.

Lake Whitney Elementary fifth-graders in Patricia Whiffen’s STEM — Science, Technology, Engineering and Math — class worked in teams to develop a model of a device that would help solve the growing problem of debris in space. Each team displayed its prototype in the cafeteria for classmates and faculty to vote on the machine they felt would be the most effective. The winning team of BellaJolie Hernandez, Lilly Schlegel, Kristin Stewart and Andrew White developed a device that uses magnetic force to collect and incinerate debris that cannot be recycled.

MetroWest Elementary

MetroWest Elementary administration and several core team members (l. to r.) Michelle Pignolet; Atresa Grubbs, assistant principal; Denise Evans; Evangeline Slaughter, assistant principal; James Tews; Val Dobson; Marlene Baer; and Christine Szymanski, principal, get in the spirit of Dr. Seuss for National Education Association’s Read Across America Day.

MetroWest Elementary students and staff members celebrated National Education Association’s Read Across America Day and Dr. Seuss’ birthday. NEA’s Read Across America is an annual reading motivation and awareness program that calls for every child in every community to celebrate reading. Throughout the week, students listened to guest readers, participated in trivia and took a reader’s oath with Principal Christine Szymanski and Assistant Principal Evangeline Slaughter. They also dressed to represent Dr. Seuss’ work: red and blue to represent One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish; wacky socks for Fox in Sox; and green for Green Eggs and Ham. Many other Dr. Seuss activities took place in the classrooms.

Chain of Lakes Middle

Intermediate and advanced chorus members at Chain of Lakes Middle received “straight excellents” and “straight superiors,” respectively, on their performances at the school’s annual districtwide Music Performance Assessment Concert. During the event, musicians perform two diverse pieces of challenging music to display their musicianship skills and “sight-read” a piece of never-before-seen music to demonstrate their music literacy skills. Four judges evaluate the performances against a statewide standard, assigning different grades in different categories and adding up to a final rating. The ratings are: superior, excellent, good, fair and poor. The COLMS family extends its congratulations to all the students involved.

West Orange High

West Orange High was recognized by the National Beta Club as a 2015-16 National Beta School of Merit. The award was given to honor the school’s dedication and commitment to academic excellence. To commemorate its achievement, WOHS will receive a congratulatory letter, National Beta School of Merit window decal to display at the school, and be publicized as a recipient at the 2016 National Beta Convention.

Et Al

040716sn05_school_newsHoly Family Catholic School kindergartners William Wolsonovich (left) and Vincent DeFalco show their school spirit during National Catholic Schools Week.

Holy Family Catholic School held a weeklong celebration for National Catholic Schools Week, an annual event that celebrates Catholic school education across the country. This year’s theme was “Faith, Academics & Service.” Masses were held throughout the week, as well as various events that got the children’s competitive and creative spirits rolling. It began with an open house to give prospective families a behind-the-classroom-doors tour of the school. Other events included a walk-a-thon to raise money for Orphans Rising missions, field day and Crazy Hair/Sock Day, a talent show, Career Day and a volunteer breakfast to honor the people who make HFCS events possible. One of the most anticipated days was when the eighth-graders took over the school, learning their lessons in advance and teaching their fellow students while the teachers relaxed.

040716sn06_school_newsPremier Academy students (l. to r.) Brady Sorensen, Saniya Ahmad, Emma Guilfoy, Zoha Ahmad, Samuel Brown, Darius Patel, Hudson Allen, Akhtar Ahmad, Giovanni Fernandez and Wyatt Brown welcome pediatric dentist Mike DiMauro, D.D.S., (center), who taught the children about the importance of brushing and flossing teeth.

Pediatric dentist Mike DiMauro, D.D.S., visited Premier Academy to talk to the children about the importance of brushing and flossing teeth. He gave his presentation about dental health to Akhtar and Zoha Ahmad, Hudson Allen, Samuel and Wyatt Brown, Giovanni Fernandez, Emma Guilfoy, Darius Patel and Brady Sorensen.


Windermere Union Church Preschool teachers Amy Brasse (far left) and Heather Lesesne (far right) and their students wear the medals they received at the school’s Field Day Olympics.

Windermere Union Church Preschool held its Field Day Olympics. Families were invited to watch the children display the skills they have learned in Kindergym during the academic year. The school has been serving Southwest Orlando for more than 50 years as an extension of ministry of Windermere Union Church.


Michael Johnson reads a special Cat in the Hat book to his granddaughter, Joette Raketich, and her VPK classmates at Christ The King Lutheran PreSchool.

Michael Johnson donned a Cat in the Hat outfit for a special visit to Christ The King Lutheran PreSchool. He joined his granddaughter’s VPK class as a mystery reader to read the Dr. Seuss book.






Teens from Dr. Phillips High and West Orange High attend Southwest resident and Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacob’s fifth annual Youth Leadership Conference.

Southwest resident and Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs welcomed more than 200 high school student leaders from 23 Orange County public schools and the nonprofit teen group Family & Friends United Inc. to Rollins College for her fifth annual Youth Leadership Conference. The half-day event engaged students and taught them about the functions of local county government and how to better participate in community initiatives, as well as provided insight on how to strengthen their leadership skills. The Youth Leadership Conference was founded by Mayor Jacobs in 2011 to connect youth with their local government. About 1,000 local student leaders have participated in the program since its inception.


Richard and Raylene Scholz attend Holy Family Catholic School’s masquerade-themed fundraising auction at Rosen Shingle Creek.

Although we try to ensure that all information presented above is the most current, correct and dependable available, we do rely on others for the source of our news. Therefore, the Southwest Orlando Bulletin and Kearney Publishing Corp. cannot be held responsible for the validity of the information presented here, nor does mentioning it constitute an endorsement. School News is welcome and may be mailed to P.O. Box 851, Windermere, FL  34786; or emailed to💓

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