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Theresa Morrison

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Allison Levi

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Samantha Hulsman

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Jim Lowenstein

 The DeLand Area Chamber of Commerce and Orange City Alliance has selected its Crystal Apple Award winners for 2021: Samantha Hulsman of Citrus Grove Elementary School in DeLand, Allison Levi of St. Barnabas Episcopal School in DeLand, Jim Lowenstein of DeLand High School, and Theresa Morrison of Orange City Elementary School.

FUTURES Foundation for Volusia County Schools has announced its 2021 First Year Teacher Award nominees. To be considered for the recognition, a nominee must have earned a baccalaureate degree, started a full-time teaching career on or before Jan. 1, 2020, performed outstandingly based on standards established by Volusia County Schools, and been nominated by their school principal.

The 2021 elementary-school and secondary-school award-winners will be announced at FUTURES Foundation’s annual First Year Teacher Awards Celebration Tuesday, April 6, at the Jackie Robinson Ballpark in Daytona Beach. Volusia United Educators has joined FUTURES Foundation in sponsoring this celebration.

The first-year teachers nominated from elementary schools in West Volusia are Marlena McNeil, Blue Lake Elementary School in DeLand; Brian Levine, Citrus Grove Elementary in DeLand; Gina Calbeto, DeBary Elementary; Kennedy Lawrence, Discovery Elementary in Deltona; Katie Zinzi, Starke Elementary in DeLand; Brittney VanPatten, Enterprise Elementary; Judith Gonzalez, Forest Lake Elementary in Deltona; Brianna Cupp, Freedom Elementary in DeLand; Angela Williams, Friendship Elementary in Deltona; Bryan Rush, Manatee Cove Elementary in Orange City; Jasmin Felix, McInnis Elementary in DeLeon Springs; Amy Smith, Orange City Elementary; Mayra Galvan, Pierson Elementary; Kelsey Maldonado, Spirit Elementary in Deltona; Foley Flood, Sunrise Elementary in Deltona; Kayla Manchette, Timbercrest Elementary in Deltona; and Michelle Hudimac, Woodward Avenue Elementary in DeLand.

The first-year teachers nominated from secondary schools in West Volusia are Shelby Radford, DeLand High School; Keith Strickland, DeLand Middle; Isabella Glessner, Deltona High; Kelvin Kerrutt, Galaxy Middle in Deltona; Sheldon Martin, Heritage Middle in Deltona; Megan Paytas, Pine Ridge High in Deltona; Heather Picos, River Springs Middle in Orange City; Dayana Hughes, University High in Orange City; and Amy Graydon, Volusia Online Learning.

Volusia County Schools has established a schedule for state tests for the remainder of the school year to allow for social distancing during test administration. The daily spring testing schedules for elementary, middle and high school can be found on the VCS website at https://www.vcsedu.org/REA/assessment.

A recent executive order issued by Gov. Ron DeSantis extends the spring state testing windows for Florida State Assessments by two weeks to allow for further flexibility for makeups, if needed. With that extension, test results will be released by the state later than originally scheduled. Grade 3 ELA assessment results will now be available no later than June 30, and results of the remaining state assessments will be released by July 31.

The Florida Department of Education has not made allowances for statewide assessments to be taken remotely, even by students enrolled in a virtual learning option. VCS respects the decisions of Volusia Live and Volusia Online Learning parents who do not feel safe bringing their child in for face-to-face testing.

However, it is important to note that students must still meet assessment requirements for graduation, promotion and program decisions. This is especially important for third-grade students who must demonstrate reading proficiency to be promoted to fourth grade, and high-school students working toward meeting graduation requirements.

Graduation requirements can be found at www.vcsedu.org/school-counseling/graduation-requirements.

Spring Holiday for Volusia County public schools ends on Monday, March 29, with students and staff returning that day. The third grading period ended with the start of Spring Holiday.

Grades on Parent Portal will be posted Monday, March 29, and report cards will be distributed Monday, April 5.

The DeLeon Springs Community Association Inc. is accepting applications for the 2021 DSCA Inc. Merit Scholarship. Completed applications must be postmarked by March 31.

An applicant must be a resident of DeLeon Springs and a high-school senior who has been accepted into an accredited two-year or four-year college, university or vocational school.

For last-minute information, go to www.deleonspringscommunityassociation.com or email to dscainc@bellsouth.net.

Citrus Grove Elementary School

Citrus Grove Elementary School in DeLand had its ninth annual Groovin’ at the Grove 5K virtually, sponsored by Trinity United Methodist Church, Stetson Baptist Church and Family Health Source. Roughly 250 students participated, and their results were recorded through use of a real-time, interactive app called RaceJoy.

Citrus Grove would like to thank the following sponsors of this year’s virtual race: Trinity United Methodist Church, Stetson Baptist Church, Family Health Source, Walmart, Countryside Animal Clinic, Mainstreet Community Bank, Solar-Fit, Gallery Homes of DeLand, Publix, Double C Roofing, Security First Insurance, Circle of Life Wellness Chiropractor, Aldi, Hangar 15 and Chick-fil-A.

DeLand High School

CTE instructor Vickie Perri has been chosen by the district as the CTE Teacher of the Year from DeLand High School. She is very knowledgeable about the industry certification platforms, has high expectations for her students, and works to help them succeed.

DeLand High School athletics

The DeLand High School girls’ flag-football team has moved its season record to 3-0, as the girls defeated Wekiva High School, 13-6. Julia Comin achieved a total of 149 offensive yards and two rushing TDs. On defense, Sage Dawson had six tackles and three pass deflections, while Alicia and Elena Olazar and Moet Daniels constantly applied pressure 

 accounting for four sacks, five tackles for a loss, and six tackles. Baylee Patt had two key pass breakups and the game-winning interon the Wekiva quarterback, ception with nine seconds remaining in the game. 

At the Volusia/Flagler Freshman/Sophomore Track Championships, the DeLand boys were fifth while the girls were sixth. Sophomore James Gannon took two firsts, with a win in the 800 at 2:05.88 and the 1,600 at 4:41.94. Marion Smokes won the boys’ shot put at 40 feet, 1.25 inches. Earning seconds was Sydney Neira in the 800 and the javelin throw. 

DeLand High hosted the annual Big “D” Relays, with 16 competing. The team mile took first, with Ethan Myrick, Gannon and Caleb Roberts doing the running, while the boys’ 4X400 relay also won with a clocking of 3:30.89. 

The Bulldog athletic calendar, which needs to be confirmed due to COVID and the weather, places the DeLand High baseball team hosting Deltona on Friday, March 26, at 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. 

On Monday, March 29, the softball team travels to Pine Ridge, with the varsity playing at 4:30 p.m. and the junior varsity at 6:30 p.m., while the JV baseball team faces Flagler Palm Coast at the Sperling Sports Complex at 6 p.m. 

On Tuesday, March 30, the DHS flag-football team goes to Apopka for games at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m., while the softball team plays host to Spruce Creek at 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. The junior-varsity softball team plays the early game. The JV baseball team greets New Smyrna Beach at 4 p.m. on the campus field. 

Wednesday, March 31, has the baseball team traveling to Atlantic High School at 4:30 p.m. 

Thursday, April 1, has the flag-football team at Pierson Taylor Middle- High at 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. 

Friday, April 2, brings the New Smyrna Beach varsity baseball team to the Sperling Complex for a game with the DeLand High Bulldogs at 7 p.m. 

Saturday, April 3, has the Bulldog track team going to University High for an 8 a.m. meet, while the Bulldog weightlifters compete in the FHSAA District Tournament at Flagler Palm Coast at 9 a.m. 

Deltona High School 

At the Volusia/Flagler Freshman/Sophomore Track Championships, Benjamin Helms of Deltona High School took second in the long jump with a 17-foot-9- inch leap. 

Pine Ridge High School 

Pine Ridge High School in Deltona has named Brooke Sheneman and Willie Stevenson as the Administrative Staff Members of the Week. Both are physical education teachers. 

The Pine Ridge Band congratulates the following members for recent honors collected: Max Dean with a superior for an alto sax solo; Kayla Brown, Sebastian Perkins and Brogan Willis with a superior for a saxophone trio; and Leila Ahearn Bodon, Mitchell Augustine, Trentin Davis, Hayden Chipperfield-Vandyke, Ian Davis, Brianna De l e rme, Connor Fincham, Regan Gatz, Jacob Havens, Semaj Ratcl i f f, Alexander Salkey, Michelle Solum, Rayna Weathers and Edward Wilkinson with a superior for a percussion ensemble. 

Pine Ridge freshman Felicity Justman took first place in a slam poetry contest. 

Pine Ridge seniors Julio Blanco and Asia Olude have been named by The Daytona Beach News- Journal as Medallion of Excellence recipients. 

University High School 

University High School in Orange City has been selected to participate in the Florida Department of Education’s Hope Amba s sadors Pi lot Program. This is a peer-to-peer student-mentorship program that uses student volunteers to work with their peers and help create an environment of kindness and compassion in their schools. 

The mission is based on kindness, compassion, resiliency and volunteerism, and connects students to volunteer services, both in the school and in the community. Participating students will have the opportunity to build leadership skills, develop new relationships, and be part of community projects and service events. 

University High will receive $500 from the Florida Education Foundation to develop and implement the program. Principal Karen Chenoweth is working with the Student Government Association to expand its school projects to include several initiatives sponsored by the Hope Ambassadors program. 

At the Volusia/Flagler Freshman/Sophomore Track Championships, University High sophomore Royce Eggert took first place in the 3,200 at 10:29.93, with Angel Lebron taking first in the triple jump with a 38-foot- 5-inch effort, Marlo Jones winning the girls’ long jump at 15 feet, 1.5 inches, and Morgan Northey winning the javelin throw at 63 feet, 8 inches. The boys’ 4X800 relay also took first running the 2 miles in 9:00.68. Earning second-place finishes were Justin Martinez, Eggert and Lebron. 

Stetson University 

Stetson University will host Spring 2021 Commencement outdoors at Spec Martin Memorial Stadium in DeLand May 7-9. This will allow more room for family and friends to attend, while still providing physical distancing. The events will take place, rain or shine, at the stadium. 

Ceremonies will be split by college or school, and are scheduled for mornings or evenings to avoid the warmer temperatures of the day. 

To ensure physical distancing, undergraduates can receive up to four tickets at no charge for family and friends to attend, while graduate students can receive up to six tickets. Visit commencement at www.stetson.edu/other/ commencement. 

Stetson has a new director of undergraduate admissions — Brian Fortman. He started March 1, and has served as dean of enrollment management at Presbyterian College in South Carolina. 

The next Science Cafe Series speaker, with “Armchair Geology,” will be Dr. J.P. Gannon, assistant professor of forest resources and environmental conservation at Virginia Tech. His armchair will take place 5-6 p.m. Wednesday, March 31. 

College honors 

Cheryl Bedenbaugh, of DeLand, has been initiated into The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, the nation’s oldest and most selective all-discipline collegiate honor society. Bedenbaugh was initiated at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale. 

Col in Figenscher, of DeLand, has been named to the dean’s list at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro. 

— Send school news to Tony Tussing via email: at flacoach43@hotmail.com.