District Digest

Driftwood Middle School Teacher Named White House Champion of Change


Congratulations to Linda Gancitano, physical education teacher at Driftwood Middle School Academy of Health and Wellness, on being named a White House Climate Education on Literacy Champion of Change. As part of the Champions of Change program, The White House honors people like Gancitano who have made a difference in enhancing climate education.

Gancitano has served as a middle school physical education teacher for 25 years at Driftwood Middle. Prior to this recognition, Gancitano was named Florida Green School Teacher of the Year, Broward County Physical Education Teacher of the Year and Driftwood Middle School Teacher of the Year. She also serves the District on the Wellness Committee and Superintendent’s Environmental Technical Advisory Committee. Additionally, Gancitano spearheaded the District and school application for the National Green Ribbon Award and Florida Green Schools. Broward County Public Schools (BCPS) is currently a 2014 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School District Sustainability awardee.


McArthur High School Principal Receives Special Honor


    • McArthur High School Principal Todd LaPace is celebrating a special honor.  He is now the Florida Association of Student Councils’ (FASC) 2014/15 Principal of the Year. The announcement was made during the FASC’s 43rd Annual Convention, which was held in Tampa.
    • Students nominate the candidates for this award and then a selection committee determines the winner on criteria such as how the principal positively impacts student government, campus leadership and the overall climate of co-curricular activities on campus.

"First and foremost, I would like to say thank you to my students and staff for making this award happen. I am both humbled and honored to be recognized by the very students and staff I serve," said Principal LaPace. "‚ÄčThis award shows the positive impact our students and staff have had on the culture of this campus. A culture where improving, not settling, and leading are not just stated, but rather, they are words the McArthur Community lives by.  Simply put, our successes at McArthur High School are defined by great students, a great staff, in a great community. It truly is a Great Day To Be A Mustang!"


KCW Administrative Center Honors its Employees of the Month

Congratulations to the Kathleen C. Wright (KCW) Employees of the Month.  The Employee of the Month program
was initiated in January 2015, to recognize employees who go the extra mile in providing exceptional service to District employees, parents and community members.  Each month’s winner receives a framed award from Superintendent Robert W. Runcie, as well as a reserved parking space for the month. 

KCW Employees of the Month:

February 2015 – Charles Webster, Governmental Affairs Coordinator for the Public Information Office, was nominated for his excellent leadership abilities and caring nature.  He is described as someone who easily motivates others and makes giving back a priority.  He has been a mentor for approximately 10 years with the Take Stock in Children program.
March 2015 – Roberto Bruno, KCW Security Team, was nominated for going above and beyond to help District staff and visitors to the KCW.  He is described as professional to everyone with whom he comes into contact and always
having a positive attitude. 

April 2015 – Jose Tolentino, Facilities Services - Adminstrative Support, was nominated for his dedication to his position and for his kind, pleasant attitude, as well as his professionalism.  He is described as conscientious and always happy to assist in any way he can. 

Pictured Top: Charles Webster (left) and Roberto Bruno (right) are honored as Employees of the Month at the KCW. 
Pictured Bottom: Jose Tolentino with Superintendent Robert W. Runcie.

Nova Middle School Teacher Michael Brennan Named 2015 Global Enterprising Educator


Brennan2-230x230.jpgNova Middle School entrepreneurship teacher, Michael Brennan is this year’s recipient of the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) 2015 Global Enterprising Educator for South Florida. Brennan was honored for this achievement at NFTE's Global Showcase in New York City on March 25, 2015.

Brennan is the instructor, or “Campus CEO,” of the entrepreneurship course at Nova Middle. He began teaching the NFTE curriculum at the beginning of the 2013/14 school year. At the end of the first year, NFTE presented Brennan with the chance to pilot a program called App Inventor, where he would teach a Massachusetts Institute of Technology developed coding program that allowed students to build mobile apps. The program was sponsored by Verizon, which supplied the class with 25 Samsung tablets.

“As evolving technology has changed the world, so does the manner in which we prepare our students for the future. Michael Brennan has been an educator for 24 years, serving 17 of those years at Nova Middle. When approached about becoming "Campus CEO," Brennan immediately accepted and owned the task of building this stellar program. His business acumen and vast knowledge of the world market has been the foundation of which this course was built,” said Dr. Jermaine Fleming, principal at Nova Middle.


BCPS Coordinators of Peer Counseling Programs Earn National Recognition

On Wednesday, February 18, 2015, the School Board of Broward County, Florida, honoredPeer-Counselors-web.jpg Broward County Public Schools (BCPS) Peer Counseling Coordinators for earning a special distinction. They are now the first in Florida to receive National Peer Program Professionals Certification.  This certification provides training and skills necessary to enhance peer counseling programs in schools.  In addition, Superintendent Robert W. Runcie was recognized for being named the 2015 Champion of Peer Helping by the National Association of Peer Program Professionals, for his support of peer counseling programs.   

Peer counseling programs provide students with prevention-based education and skills
on topics such as mental health and wellness, violence prevention, substance abuse prevention,
and anti-bullying.  Peer counselors also provide tutoring and mentoring in their school communities.

 “We know there is a profound impact on students through peer-to-peer education,” said Dr. Teri
Williams, who oversees peer counseling programs within the District.  “Broward County Public Schools
is proud to be a national model for peer programs.  Through these programs and the support provided
by District and school leaders, our students become agents of change in their schools and community.”

Congratulations to the following BCPS Coordinators of Peer Counseling Programs:


Karen Alfieri - Sunrise Middle School Suzanne Murphy - Northeast High School
 Stephanie Celestin - Pioneer Middle School Dr. Nina Oce - Henry D. Perry Middle School
 Stacie Conner - Gulfstream Middle School Susan Rioux - Westglades Middle School
 Toni Freeborn - Coral Glades High School  Laura Rountree - Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School
Clenner Goodman - Blanche Ely High School Calayn Small - Coral Springs Middle School
 Ivonne Hidalgo - Millennium Middle School Julie Sikorski - Tequesta Trace Middle School
Cheryl King - Bair Middle School Norma Tchir - Silver Trail Middle School
Kristine Shrove Knapp - Charles H. Flanagan High School Pamela Williams - Dillard High School
Jennifer Moser - Glades Middle School Kim Young - James S. Rickards Middle School