Broward Public School changes for the new school year


When students return to Broward schools on August 22, they may find some changes. There may be a new or expanded program, a new type of textbook, subject matter being presented in a different way, or possibly some new classrooms added to their school.
For more information on any of the items listed below, please contact the Public Relations & Governmental Affairs Department, 754-321-2300.
STEM Academy at McNicol Middle School
Students and staff at McNicol Middle School (Hollywood) will be pleasantly surprised upon their return for this 2011/12 school year.  The opening of the McNicol STEM Academy will provide a fresh start to the implementation of the STEM magnet program at the school.  STEM is a nation-wide initiative that focuses on Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics.  The McNicol STEM Academy will highlight three houses of STEM Curriculum: Forensics Science, Alternative Energy, and a STEM Paxton Lab.
Silver Lakes Middle School Opens New STEM Magnet Program
The new STEM Magnet program at Silver Lakes Middle School (North Lauderdale) will offer an educational choice for students interested in science, technology, engineering and math.  Students will have an opportunity to work with state-of-the-art technology, participate in scholastic competitions, attend educational field trips and learn from experts in the field through distance learning.
New Classroom Building at Parkway Middle School
Parkway Middle School of the Arts (Lauderhill) is slated to open a new three-story classroom building (not a new school, a new classroom building) this fall, along with a new gymnasium and athletic field.
The building is a state of the art, three-story classroom building with 32 classrooms. A large business lab that has 26 Dell computer stations and 26 Mac computer stations, can be separated by a sliding partition to create two separate labs.  There are four science labs and three resource rooms that can be divided into two small rooms.
Code of Student Conduct Booklet Goes Green
For the first time, the 2011/12 Broward County Public Schools Code of Student Conduct handbook will be distributed electronically in English, Spanish, Haitian Creole and Portuguese. The handbook is now being emailed to those parents and students who have entered their email addresses in the District’s Virtual Counselor. Parents and students may register for Virtual Counselor access at ( The Code of Student Conduct handbook will also continue to be available on the District’s website ( A limited number of print copies of the handbook are available to parents. Parents/guardians may contact their school to request a print copy.
Change to Common Core State Standards Begins
To level the playing field for students and better prepare America’s students for college or a career, Florida has joined 43 other states and the District of Columbia in the Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSS). The change to common standards will begin this fall. Starting with the 2011/12 school year, Broward and all other Florida school districts are mandated by the Florida Department of Education to implement CCSS for kindergarten students across all content areas and CCSS Literacy Standards in grades 1 – 12.This is the first step in a process timeline that will lead to complete implementation in all content areas in all grades, during the 2013/14 school year, and new CCSS aligned assessments, to replace FCAT 2.0 in the 2014/15 school year.
Dual Enrollment College Courses Available Online
BCPS has announced a unique venture to expand its dual enrollment program with Broward College. The new venture expands current Broward College course offerings to include online learning options. The dual enrollment program gives high school juniors and seniors an opportunity to enroll in courses at Broward College and earn both high school and college credits.   Through collaboration with Broward Virtual School, Broward College is now offering five college courses entirely online to BCPS high school students. This is the first venture of its kind in the state of Florida.
Middle School Science: New Books – Big Change
BCPS middle school students, grades 6 – 8, and their parents will see a big change this fall, when traditional science books are replaced with soft-cover books with perforated pages that can be removed.  Each student will have his or her own personal science textbook and will be able to use a highlighter, write notes and even cut, draw and paste directly into the book. It will be an interactive learning tool, and unlike any other textbook students have ever seen before.  BCPS recently purchased the new science textbooks as part of a statewide, state-funded textbook upgrade.  This process takes place on a six-year cycle for all textbooks.
Students Gain Driving Experience in SUVs
Driving fatalities continue to be the number one cause of death for young people ages 15-24. The District has recognized the need for Driver’s Education and will serve over 9,000 students during 2011/12 school year. A recent addition to the program has been the purchase of 10 SUVs to give students a more rounded driving experience.
School Duel Begins Second Season
The 2011/12 school year on BECON-TV marks the second season and expansion of School Duel, South Florida’s first locally produced academic quiz show, hosted by Lisa Lee. The show’s debut season matched 16 high school teams from across Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties in the single-elimination contest. The first season of School Duel was so successful and popular that there will be even more opportunities for schools and corporate sponsors to participate in 2011/12. School Duel season two will have an expanded field, consisting of 20 talented teams from across South Florida. Applications for School Duel will be made available at the start of the school year.
Sports Blitz Universe Expanding
Coverage of the county’s top football, basketball and volleyball matchups will be expanded this year on Sports Blitz Game Time on BECON-TV. You can also go behind the scenes and up-close with local athletes and celebrities on Sports Blitz, On The Record and All Access. It’s all a part of the Sports Blitz Universe, only on BECON-TV.

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