Melbourne Community Orchestra accepting new members
The Melbourne Community Orchestra is seeking string and percussion players who wish to join the all-volunteer group.
The dynamic orchestra is comprised of 50-plus musicians ranging from student players to adult hobbyists and full-time professionals.
Named "Orchestra in Residence" for the city of Melbourne in 2008, the group performs seven sets of free concerts each season in the Melbourne Auditorium, 625 Hibiscus Blvd., Melbourne.
Call (321) 952-9949 for a rehearsal schedule or visit www.MCOrchestra.org for more information.
Brevard schools featured in the Florida Power-Library Schools Program
The statewide recognition of Florida Power-Library School is awarded to schools that involve their school faculty members in developing and implementing outstanding library media programs, focused on student achievement.
After a rigorous review, including site visits, eight Brevard Schools were among the 15 schools chosen as this year's winners of the prestigious award.
These schools provide quality library media programs that encourage students to become lifelong readers and engage students in problem solving and inquiry-based activities.
The eight awarded Brevard Public Schools are:
. Apollo Elementary (Titusville): Dr. O'Kell, principal; Melissa Slack, media specialist
. Audubon Elementary (Merritt Island): Lisa Paniale, principal; Kathy S. Crisafulli, media specialist
. Harbor City Elementary (Melbourne): Christine Moore, principal; Coleen Ward, media specialist
. Hoover Middle School (Indialantic): Mollie Vega, principal; Ana Woodbrey, media specialist
. McNair Magnet School (Rockledge): Rosette Brown, principal; Julie Wales, media specialist
. Ralph M. Williams Elementary (Rockledge): Cynthia Ford, principal; Joye Kralovec, media specialist
. Turner Elementary (Palm Bay): Tanya Knowles, principal; Sharon Justin, media specialist
. Viera High School: James Hickey, principal; Beth Harris and Eryn Worcester, media specialists
Results showed that in schools that had well-staffed, well-stocked, well-managed library media centers, student achievement improved and standardized test scores were higher.
The schools will also receive a large banner for display at the school and logo pins.
For more information, please visit www.fasmnet.org or call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Humane Society seeks volunteers
The Central Brevard Humane Society is in need of dedicated individuals or groups who care about the welfare of animals.
Volunteering opportunities are available at the shelter, the Molly Mutt Thrift Shops in Historic Downtown Melbourne, Merritt Island, Palm Bay and Rockledge, the "low cost" spay/neuter and wellness clinic or as a "Society Ambassador" during community outreach (off-site) events.
Volunteer activities in dire need are dog walkers and cat socializers. They also need help with grooming animals and shelter beautification projects, as well as retail help at the thrift shops and assisting with community education and adoption events.
Individuals who volunteer as dog walkers provide daily exercise, affection and socialization to confined dogs, thus keeping them happy, healthy and adoptable - so they may find their new "forever" home with a loving and caring family (and as a side benefit you will get fit and trim).
For more information, contact Susan Rushin, volunteer coordinator with the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343, Ext. 207, or email@example.com.
Gator Club seeks sponsors for kickoff party and golf event
The Brevard County Gator Club is looking for sponsors and vendors with Florida Gator-related items for its annual kickoff party and golf challenge.
This year's event will be Saturday, Aug. 18, at 5:30 p.m. at the Duran Golf Club, 7030 Stadium Parkway, Viera.
There will also be a nine-hole par-three golf challenge at 4 p.m. before the kickoff party, which begins at 5:30 p.m. A free children's golf clinic will begin at 3 p.m., with two live alligators in attendance.
Sponsorship opportunities are available for the children's golf clinic, two live alligators event, kid's fun zone, golf holes and program sponsorships. Sponsorship donations range between $25 and $250.
The club is also trying to contact all ex-Florida Gator football players who reside in Brevard County for the golf outing and to attend the event.
For more information or to become a sponsor or vendor, please call (321) 890-7754 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
New app tracks friends, family members and employees
Mobile Office Software Solutions Inc has unveiled an amazing new app, Trackster, for iPhones and Android phones, that allows users to track their friends, parents to track their children and employers to track their employees in real time, and do it inexpensively.
As a parent, wouldn't it be great if you knew where your kids were at all times? As a teen, how cool would it be if you knew where your best friends were hanging out? And employers, think how productivity could improve if you knew where your field employees were at all times during the workday? Trackster makes all that happen, and a lot more.
Trackster is a revolutionary and inexpensive GPS based application that works on iPhones and Android phones, utilizing Google Maps in real-time. Trackster allows you to track, find and follow your family, friends or employees who also download the Trackster app from either iTunes or Android Marketplace.
If you want to know where your family, friends, or employees are, find them instantly with Trackster.
Want to know where your kids are? www.phonetrackingkids.com
Want to know where your friends are? www.phonetrackingfriends.com
Want to know where your employees are? www.phonetrackingemployees.com.
Mobile Office Solutions Inc. is a software and application development company based in Vero Beach that specializes in mobile applications and solutions for businesses, and GPS tracking software for families, friends and employers.
Sheriff's Office commander receives Manager of the Year Award
Brevard County Sheriff's Office Cmdr. Doug Waller has been named the 2012 Brevard County Manager of the Year by the Florida Space Coast Council.
The annual award is designed to publicize the positive impact that leadership, integrity and management skills can have on organizations and the community.
Nominations are solicited from throughout Brevard County from organizations not affiliated with the council.
Cmdr. Waller is the Criminal Investigations Division commander and has been employed with the Brevard County Sheriff's Office for the past 25 years.
He has been instrumental in the implementation of such innovative programs as the Sexual Offender Registration and Tracking Unit and co-creator of the "GAMEOVER" (Gang And Major Epidemic Of Violence Enforcement Response) Task Force.
For more information, please contact Cmdr. Mike DeMorat at (321) 403-5755.
Bronze Star presented to reserve rescue commander
U.S. Air Force Reservist Lt. Col. Timothy Davis, 920th Rescue Wing, was presented the Bronze Star Medal June 2 during a wing commander's call for his meritorious service while serving as the commander, 26th Expeditionary Rescue Squadron, Camp Bastion, Afghanistan from June 1, 2011, to Sept. 30, 2011.
During the deployment Lt. Col. Davis led 134 airmen to provide rapid personnel recovery and casualty evacuation capabilities for multinational ground forces in direct contact with the enemy in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
As the busiest and most mission-tasked rescue squadron, they were credited with flying 1,032 combat flights, totaling more than 750 hours and saving more than 333 lives while providing 269 medical assists.
Forty-five of the missions were considered high-risk, while engaging enemy forces in the hotly contested Helmand Province Region.
For more information about the 920th Rescue Wing, follow them on Facebook and Twitter.
Information provided by Cathleen Snow, Capt., U.S. Air Force Reserve, 920 Rescue Wing Public Affairs at (321) 494-0535 or www.920rqw.afrc.af.mil.
Humane Society announces 'foster to adopt'
The Central Brevard Humane Society has launched a new "foster to adopt" program.
This is a program through which individuals or families provide temporary homes for animals who have been residents of the shelter for six months or longer.
During this time, the Humane Society will supply individuals with an "overnight bag" for their new houseguest containing a collar, flea comb and product, microchip, toys and staff support.
Once the foster period is over, you may decide to make the animal a permanent member of the family. If so, the adoption fee will be waived (must pay for rabies vaccine & county tag).
For more information about this new program, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343 or visit crittersavers.com.
The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project receives grant
The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project has announced it has received a $50,000 grant from The Wal-mart Foundation to support its quality-of-life support programs for medically fragile children with disabilities.
The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project is one of 15 nonprofit organizations in Florida to receive grants through The Wal-mart Foundation's State Giving Program, which was created to carry out the retailer's commitment to giving back to the communities in which it operates.
Since 2001, the M.O.R.G.A.N. Project has provided support and services to parents of children with physical disabilities all across the nation, regardless of their underlying disease or disorder.
In addition to providing gently used pediatric disability equipment, new specialized bath chairs and assisting parents in attending medical support group conferences, in early 2012 they opened the doors to Morgan's Place, located at 411 Ocean Ave., in Melbourne Beach.
Morgan's Place is available by appointment only. It has been designed to provide a safe environment for parents to bring their children with special health care needs and physical disabilities for hands-on therapeutic play.
For more information on The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project and Morgan's Place, visit www.themorganproject.org or contact Kristen Malfara, executive director at (321) 506-2707 or by email at email@example.com.
Rep. Ritch Workman honored
The Florida League of Cities recently honored Rep. Ritch Workman (R-Melbourne) with a Legislative Appreciation Award at a Space Coast League of Cities meeting. League legislative advocates Casey Cooke and Ryan Matthews presented the award to Rep. Workman.
The prestigious award was presented to Rep. Workman for his efforts during the 2012 legislative session to protect the home rule powers of Florida's cities by supporting the league's legislative agenda.
Rep. Workman consistently voted in support of league positions, offered amendments to bills or worked behind the scenes to rally support for league positions.
Rep. Ritch Workman was elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 2008. He is a current member and past president of the Florida Association of Mortgage Brokers and was appointed to the Financial Action Team in 2008 by Florida's then-chief financial officer Alex Sink. He is also a member of the Rockledge Rotary Club and is the chair of the Community and Military Affairs Subcommittee.
Founded in 1922, the Florida League of Cities is the united voice for Florida's municipal governments.
For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (850) 701-3638.
Let the Humane Society help you with the loss of your pet
While the Central Brevard Humane Society cannot take away the pain when a pet passes on, they understand the loving and unconditional relationship an individual shares with their pet and what it means to face losing that "special friend."
The passing of a pet is hard enough without having to worry about making final arrangements for them. The Humane Society provides prearranged euthanasia, cremation and chapel services to help ease the stress of a difficult moment in a person's life.
Its Rainbow Bridge Community Chapel is a private, peaceful and dignified place where someone can say their "final farewells" to their beloved animal companion. It is furnished with pew seating and soft music that provides a comforting environment for someone to remember their pet and the times they shared.
For more information about these services, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343, Ext. 208 or visit www.crittersavers.com.
Exchange coordinator accepting host family applications
Audra Brown, International Exchange Coordinator for the nonprofit EF Foundation for Foreign Study, is currently accepting applications for host families for the 2012-13 school year and seeking participation from local high schools.
Host families open their homes to a 15-18-year-old from one of 25 countries around the world, and schools may offer enrollment to up to five exchange students per year. Students come for one or two semesters.
Through the exchange experience, both student and family get the chance to learn about a new culture and promote global understanding here in the community.
Host family applicants undergo a screening process to ensure that they are well suited for an exchange experience.
To host, one adult in the household must be at least 25 years old. Schools must agree to enroll the student in a full course of study with no requirements regarding the student's participation in extra-curricular activities or graduation.
Headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., EF Foundation for Foreign Study is committed to promoting international understanding and global awareness.
To learn more about high school exchange in your local community, visit www.effoundation.org or contact Audra Brown at email@example.com and/or (618) 240-1441.
'Wounded Hero Voyage' books
The book, "Wounded Hero Voyage: I Smallest Powerboat Crossing the Atlantic," is out.
Part I features the Tampa to Greenland part of the 2-part voyage to Germany.
"Wounded Hero Voyage II" picks up where book one leaves off, arriving in Greenland.
Brothers Bob and Ralph travel past thousands of icebergs in the world's smallest powerboat to ever cross the Atlantic Ocean, and they are traveling the route which passes just south of the Arctic Circle.
They are traveling unescorted - without a cabin or a keel.
The book is loaded with 92 pictures showing incredible sites and hardships with an up-close view that lets the reader experience the drama as it unfolds.
The storms are rolling in as they motor in small windows of better weather, continuing to the Faroe Islands, Shetlands, Orkneys, Scotland, England, France, Holland, and finishing the 8,312-mile voyage in a boat with less than a foot of freeboard.
They are promoting Wounded Hero Foundations in memory of three marines, John Harvey, George Holmes and Dewey Johnson.
Videos and book information is available at www.RobertBrownBooks.com. Both books are available in paperback and Kindle.
Commercial human space transportation
The Federal Aviation Administration and NASA have signed a historic agreement to coordinate standards for commercial space travel of government and non-government astronauts to and from low-Earth orbit and the International Space Station.
The two agencies will collaborate to expand efforts that provide a stable framework for the U.S. space industry, avoid conflicting requirements and multiple sets of standards, and advance both public and crew safety.
The memorandum of understanding signed by the two agencies establishes policy for operational missions to the space station.
Commercial providers will be required to obtain a license from the FAA for public safety.
Crew safety and mission assurance will be NASA's responsibility.
This approach allows both agencies to incorporate experience and lessons learned as progress is made.
The FAA is responsible for regulating and licensing all U.S. private companies and individuals involved in commercial space transportation.
For details on FAA commercial space transportation responsibilities, visit www.faa.gov/news/fact_sheets/news_story.cfm?newsId=12179.
To view the agreement, visit http://go.nasa.gov/Lru8iQ .
For more information on NASA's Commercial Crew Program, visit http://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew.
Rep. Bill Posey congratulates students bound for U.S. Service Academies
Congressman Bill Posey congratulates nine students from the 15th Congressional District on their appointments to the U.S. Service Academies.
The nation's service academies are the U.S. Military Academy, U.S. Naval Academy, U.S. Air Force Academy, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and U.S. Coast Guard Academy.
The following students from District 15 received appointments:
. U.S. Military Academy:
Rachel Greer, Melbourne High School, Cody Rothschild, Palm Bay High School and U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School, Luis Vega, Palm Bay High School and USMAPS
. U.S. Naval Academy:
Rachel Griffin, Merritt Island High School, Siera Snapp, Sebastian River High School
. U.S. Air Force Academy: Vaughn Campbell, Osceola High School and U.S. Air Force Academy Preparatory School, Anthony Kochensparger, Sebastian River High School, Sean Ledfors, Sebastian River High School, Jacob Redito, West Shore Junior-Senior High School
For more information, call (202) 225-3671 or visit www.posey.house.gov.
SPCA urges pit bull 'parents' to prevent unwanted litters
With 8 million homeless pets entering U.S. shelters every year, the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of North Brevard is helping to solve the problem with its "Primp Your Pit (bull)" spay/neuter promotion sponsored by PetSmart Charities.
During the month of August, the SPCA will spay/neuter pit bulls for a special rate of $20.
Today, 35 percent of dogs and cats in U.S. households are not spayed or neutered, yet the procedure is one of the most effective ways to reduce the homeless pet population
Pit bulls, in particular, end up in shelters in large numbers because of myths and negative media that impact public perceptions associated with the breed.
The American Veterinary Medical Association endorses spaying and neutering puppies as young as 8-10 weeks old, and research shows that the procedure can improve the behavior and health of the pet, including reducing the risk of certain reproductive cancers and infections.
In an effort to prevent unwanted litters of pit bulls, this special rate during the "Primp Your Pit (bull)" event applies to all residents of Brevard.
The promotion is based on availability
Please visit www.spcanorthbrevard.com or call (321) 267-8221 for more information or to schedule an appointment.
Palm Shores mayor honored with award
The Florida League of Cities honored Palm Shores mayor Carol McCormack recently with the Home Rule Hero Award during the Space Coast League of Cities meeting.
This award was given to mayor McCormack for her efforts during the 2012 legislative session to advance the league's legislative agenda and help protect the home rule powers of Florida's cities.
Carol McCormack has served as mayor of Palm Shores since 2002 and was re-elected without opposition to four-year terms in both 2007 and 2011.
While serving as mayor of Palm Shores, she has acted as an advocate within the county and state regarding highway safety and the reduction of fatalities.
She is currently on the Florida League of Cities and Florida League of Mayors Boards of Directors and is past president of the Space Coast League of Cities.
For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org/ or call (850) 701-3638.
Florida College Coach of the Year and the players
For the second time in three seasons, Florida Tech head men's and women's tennis coach Bill Macom has been named "United States Professional Tennis Association College Coach of the Year" for the Florida Division. Previously, he earned the award in 2010.
In his seventh season, Coach Macom guided the men's team to 14 wins, which was a seven-win improvement from 2011.
Newcomer Nicolas Clerc was a standout performer as a sophomore with a record of 18-3 overall and 17-1 at No. 1 singles. He teamed up with Jorge Abarca Montero to form a No. 1 doubles team that went 18-3 on the season.
Freshman Beau Fieldsend also excelled in his first season, posting 15 wins in singles and a 12-4 mark with D.J. Pate at No. 3 doubles.
Coach Macom's work with the women's team led the Panthers to their fourth straight NCAA Division II Championship appearance.
They ensured their fifth consecutive season of 15 or more wins by finishing at 16-9. This success translated into FIT earning its highest national ranking in the program's nine-year history at No. 17 in the last Intercollegiate Tennis Association Division II Poll.
Abigail Greif, Katarina Huba and Kristina Huba recorded 15 or more singles wins this spring. Kristina Huba, a sophomore from Ascona, Switzerland, went 17-5 and 9-1 at No. 2 singles. She and her sister Katarina played at No. 1 doubles and combined for a 15-6 record. Following the season, they both garnered All-Sunshine State Conference recognition. Also, Kristina Huba was tabbed ITA's South Region Player to Watch.
The men's and women's tennis teams continued to impress in the classroom.
The men finished the 2011-12 academic year with a cumulative grade point average above a 3.0, and the women won FIT's Team GPA Award for the highest cumulative GPA among all of the institution's women's sports at 3.65.
For more information, call (321) 674-8250 or visit www.floridatechsports.com.
NASA offers web, mobile links to follow space station and mission control
NASA is using the Internet and smart phones to provide the public with a new inside look at what happens aboard the International Space Station and in the Mission Control Center at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.
Log onto the agency's "Space Station Live!" web page or download the companion "ISSLive!" mobile application to get up-to-the-minute information.
Groundbreaking research and technology development work is going on every day in the microgravity environment of space, and Space Station Live! allows users to see what the expedition astronauts do minute by minute.
Space Station Live! includes a web experience and free mobile ISSLive! app for smart phones and tablet computers accessible on NASA's website. The app also is available through the Google Play and iTunes app stores.
Special features of the Space Station Live! web and mobile app experience include: live streaming data from various space station systems, live streaming data from actual crew and science timelines with social media links, descriptions and educational material that describe how the space station works, educational lessons using the live content, 3-D virtual mission control, 3-D virtual space station using live streaming data to correctly position the sun, Earth, moon and the station's solar arrays, 3-D model of the space station with labels and colored by the international partner contributions to its assembly and links to NASA's five international partner space agencies' mission information.
To use Space Station Live!, visit http://spacestationlive.nasa.gov.
To download ISSLive! and other NASA mobile apps, visit http://www.nasa.gov/connect/apps.html.
For information about the International Space Station, visit http://www.nasa.gov/station.
Sheriff's jail accreditation manager selected as the finest in the state of Florida
Jail accreditation manager Jeff Jarvis was recently selected as the Florida Corrections Accreditation Commission's "2011 Distinguished Service Award" recipient for the state of Florida.
Mr. Jarvis was presented this award at the Florida Police Accreditation Commission Conference in Bonita Springs in June.
He has been involved with the accreditation process for several years and has provided unique insight and expertise for improvements to the commission's process and standards.
For more information, visit www.BrevardSheriff.com.
United Way of Brevard funding achieves local impact of more than $17 million
Sixty-one local health and human service programs at 43 Brevard agencies will benefit from nearly $4 million in funding, thanks to United Way donors.
United Way of Brevard's Board of Directors recently approved the funding recommendations of more than 100 volunteers who spent more than 2,000 hours reviewing agency financials and funding requests, as well as touring agencies.
Besides the funding from the Community Care Fund, another million dollars will be distributed - both here in Brevard and outside of our community - at the direction of donor-designated gifts, thanks to the successful 2011 United Way Community Campaign.
This, along with the grants that United Way of Brevard manages for the community, increases United Way's total financial impact on the community to more than $17 million.
For more information, call (321) 631-2740.
VE 9-Hole Golf League officers
New officers for the 2012-13 season of the VE 9-Hole Golf League were sworn in by outgoing president Mary Ann Ollier during an installation luncheon at the Black Tulip Restaurant.
The officers are: Shirley Ferris, co-vice president; Sandy Barbaro, co-treasurer; Nancy Razzini, secretary; Diana Ashbrook, co-treasurer; Sue Buttner, president; and Mariette Present, co-vice president.
Mary Ann Ollier was presented a gift for an excellent job as president for the past two years.
Lady golfers interested in joining the league may call Doreen Volpe at (321) 631 7403 for details.
Health First Health Plans receives highest accreditation
Health First Health Plans has been awarded an accreditation status of "Excellent" - the highest possible level - from the National Committee for Quality Assurance.
Health First Health Plans has received this top rating for both its commercial and Medicare plans for the third consecutive three-year accreditation period.
The accreditation survey process includes on-site and off-site evaluations of more than 60 standards and selected performance measures conducted by a team of physicians and managed care experts.
Information from health plan records, consumer surveys, and interviews with health plan staff are collected.
A national oversight committee of physicians analyzes the team's findings and assigns an accreditation level based on the plan's performance.
For more information, visit www.HealthFirstHealthPlans.org, call (321) 434-5665 or call toll-free at (800) 716-7737.
New law waiving fees for military veterans in effect
The Department of Business and Professional Regulation encourages military veterans, who have been honorably discharged within the past 24 months, to apply for a new licensure fee waiver available through the department.
The department now has the ability to waive initial licensure fees for military veterans under a new law that passed during the 2012 Legislative session. The waivers could save veterans anywhere from a few hundred dollars to more than a thousand dollars, depending on the license type.
Through House Bill No. 517, the initial license fee, initial application fee and initial unlicensed activity fee will be waived for veterans returning from service, provided the veteran applies for licensure within 24 months of being honorably discharged
The law will apply to new licenses granted for more than 20 professions under the department's jurisdiction, including construction, real estate, certified public accountants and cosmetologists.
The waiver can be downloaded from the department's military services webpage at www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/dbprmilitary.html and should be included in applications for professional licensure.
For more information, visit www.MyFloridaLicense.com.
Federal and Junior Duck Stamps help protect wetland habitats
The 2012-13 Federal Duck Stamp is on sale across the United States, giving hunters, stamp collectors and anyone with an interest in migratory birds and other wildlife an easy way to help conserve habitats.
Ninety-eight percent of proceeds from sales of the stamp are used to acquire and protect vital wetlands supports hundreds of species of migratory birds, wildlife and plants.
Fish and Wildlife Service director Dan Ashe joined representatives of the U.S. Postal Service, Bass Pro Shops and other conservation partners at the Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World retail store in Virginia recently to celebrate the first day of sale of both the $15 Federal Duck Stamp and $5 Junior Duck Stamp.
The new stamps are now available at thousands of post offices, Bass Pro Shops and other sporting goods stores and retail locations across the country, and can also be purchased online at www.duckstamp.com.
The electronic validation may be used to hunt or obtain free admission to a refuge immediately, while a physical stamp is mailed to each customer.
Learn more about the Federal Duck Stamp Program online at www.fws.gov/duckstamps, or on Facebook at USFWS_Federal Duck Stamp. Learn more about the Junior Duck Stamp at www.fws.gov/juniorduck, or on Facebook at Federal Junior Duck Stamp.
Brevard Rescue Mission awarded grant
Brevard Rescue Mission, which provides transitional housing and support services for homeless women with children, was recently awarded a $1,000 grant from the Boeing Employee Community Fund.
The "Transporting Families to Financial Independence Grant" will be used to support transportation service for the families to get to jobs, school and medical appointments.
Brevard Rescue Mission is privately funded by donations from individuals, civic organizations, foundations, churches and area businesses.
Donated funds provide housing, education, transportation, counseling, medical care, parent training, household budgeting, tutoring, job training, food and clothing and case-manager support services.
For more information, call (321) 480-9100 or visit www.BrevardRescueMission.org.
Melbourne High School volleyball
Melbourne High is looking for two coaches, or assistants, for its freshman and junior varsity volleyball squads.
If you are an experienced volleyball player, indoor or outdoor, and would like to coach, please contact Coach Post, head volleyball coach at Melbourne High.
She can be reached via email at email@example.com.
Schools continue to earn high marks
School grades have been announced, and out of Brevard's 69 elementary and middle schools that received their annual state grades, 64 percent received an A, with 94 percent of schools receiving an A or B (does not include charter schools).
According to data released by the Florida Department of Education, 38 Brevard public elementary schools received an A, 16 received a B, two received a C, and one received a D.
Six of BPS middle schools received an A, five received a B and one received a C.
Out of 1,811 elementary schools statewide, Brevard has three of the top 10 elementary schools based on points earned for the school grade: No. 2 is Freedom 7 Elementary School of International Studies; No. 8 is Robert Louis Stevenson School of the Arts and No. 10 is West Melbourne Elementary School for Science.
Every BPS Middle School increased in total accountability points.
For more information, call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796.
Local school named to U.S. Top 100 by Newsweek
West Shore Junior/Senior High School in Melbourne was listed in a national report card among the top 100 public high schools in the United States.
Created by Newsweek, the America's Best High Schools 2012 report card ranks the 1,000 best public high schools in the nation - the ones that have demonstrated to be the most successful in turning out college-ready graduates.
Cocoa Beach Junior/Senior High and Rockledge High School were also named among the 69 Florida schools listed in the top 1,000.
For more information, call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796.
Space Coast Cancer Center offers clinical trials
Richard Levine, MD, principle investigator of the Clinical Trials Department at Space Coast Cancer Center, is a co-author on the recent publication, "Effects of a Brief Multimedia Psycho Educational Intervention on the Attitudes and Interests of Patients with Cancer Regarding Clinical Trial Participation: A Multicenter Randomized Controlled Trial."
The article was published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology July 10.
The purpose of the study was to determine if a brief discussion with patients regarding clinical trials has a positive impact in their willingness to participate in clinical trials.
The center offers clinical trials to cancer patients as an affiliate of the Sarah Cannon Research Institute, the largest research network in the United States.
For more information or questions, contact Linda Perez, clinical research regulatory coordinator, at (855) 894-HOPE (4673), Ext. 3510.
Brevard County Health Department honored
Heidar Heshmati, M.D., director of the Brevard County Health Department, was honored at the 2012 annual conference of the National Association of County and city health officials, a body of peers, for developing and implementing a program that demonstrates exemplary and replicable qualities in response to a local public health need.
The Sexual Assault Examination Response Program was one of 39 public health programs developed by a local health department selected from across the nation to receive the official's Model Practice Award.
The Sexual Assault Examination Response Program was implemented in partnership with the State's Attorney Office, Sexual Assault Victim Services, Salvation Army and Serene Harbour Domestic Violence Shelters, law enforcement agencies, and the Brevard County Health Department.
This award puts Brevard County Health Department into special company - a select group of health departments that exemplify a forward thinking, proactive attitude toward protecting and promoting the health of communities across the nation.
For more information about the Model Practice Awards and to view a list of other award winners, visit www.naccho.org.
'Free' prenatal classes in Rockledge, Cocoa Beach, Melbourne
Pediatrics in Brevard physicians Dr. Tara Forcier, and Dr. Jan Borowski are hosting "free" prenatal care classes for all Brevard County 'soon-to-be' moms.
Sessions are held at the Pediatrics in Brevard Rockledge office, 134 S. Woods Drive, and the Melbourne office, 1755 W. Hibiscus Blvd., on the first Tuesday of each month; sessions are held at the Cocoa Beach office (located in the Cape Canaveral Hospital Medical Plaza), 701 W. Cocoa Beach Causeway, on the third Thursday of each month. Monthly classes at both locations begin at 6 p.m.
All prospective parents and grandparents are welcome. Topics will include the importance of "well visits," the options of circumcision, breast feeding and immunizations, and more.
For more information on the monthly educational care classes for soon-to-be-moms, call (321) 636-3066, Ext. 206. For additional information about Pediatrics in Brevard, visit www.pedsinbrevard.com.
Sheriff's aviation unit wins international award
The Brevard County Sheriff's Office Aviation Unit was recently awarded third place in the Forward Looking Infra Red Vision Awards Ceremony, which was hosted at the 2012 Annual Airborne Law Enforcement Association Convention.
The FLIR Vision Awards are presented annually to airborne law enforcement teams with the best video of a rescue, chase, apprehension or surveillance mission. Only one video per team may be submitted for award consideration.
Cpl./pilot Chris Sands and deputy/tactical flight officer Joseph Barrera were among the top three finalists selected from video submissions from around the world. Cpl. Sands and deputy Barrera were recognized for demonstrating their outstanding coordination and quality of teamwork while assisting, tracking and apprehending a burglary suspect in the city of Cocoa in April 2012.
The Brevard County Sheriff's Office Aviation Unit has previously been awarded first-, second- and third-place and are the only airborne law enforcement unit in the world to be recognized as a finalist in six out of the last 11 years for this award.
As part of the award, a charitable donation on behalf of the Sheriff's Office, will be presented to The United Way of Brevard.
A copy of the video may be picked up at the Brevard County Sheriff's Office Aviation Unit, 910 Airport Road, Merritt Island.
Further information may be received by contacting chief pilot Coppola at (321) 455-1475.
Authors' group elects new leadership
The volunteer Space Coast Writers' Guild members recently elected author Donna Chesher as its president.
Ms. Chesher's previous nonprofit experience includes fundraising with the University of California.
The guild is dedicated to encouraging, instructing and developing writers, and the new leadership's goal for the guild is an emphasis on outreach.
More information on the guild is available at www.scwg.org, (321)254-8464 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
NASA history now available on iTunes U
Marking the 43rd anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, NASA has added an extensive collection of historical video, audio, photographs and documents to iTunes U.
iTunes U is a platform for making educational resources available to a wide audience through the iTunes Store.
NASA's History Program Office iTunes U site currently contains about 300 items that represent a broad sweep of NASA history-related to important moments, activities and figures in NASA history. The site's content is free to download.
The site includes Apollo program material with a collection of items for each of the Apollo missions, as well as a special Politics of Apollo collection of key documents related to the U.S. lunar program.
The site also features eBooks from the NASA History Series.
To view all of NASA's iTunes U sites and download material, visit www.nasa.gov/connect/itunesu.html.
Rehabilitation open house
The Melbourne Terrace Rehabilitation Center gave an open house recently and welcomed the community. It was a unified celebration for the facility's state of renewal that is meant to give back to the community.
An expansion included the renovation of common areas, including a fresh café and bistro.
With a novel ice cream parlor and a surround-sound movie theater, there will be more choices for residents and patients to enjoy friends and family.
Melbourne Terrace Rehabilitation Center offers comprehensive rehabilitative outpatient and inpatient services for short or long term care.
All residents have an individualized plan of care developed with the resident's family involvement and coordinated with all medical staffing.
It is located at 251 Florida Ave., Melbourne.
To schedule a private tour or to request more information, call (321) 725-3990.
FIT opens new building
Florida Institute of Technology recently opened its new Florida Tech Commons building at the intersection of University Boulevard and Babcock Street.
The three-story, 63,000-square foot facility is designed as the new "front door" to campus.
In addition to a first-floor Center for Student Success, the building also houses the College of Psychology and Liberal Arts on the second floor. The third floor features the Women's Business Center, Continuing Education and Career Services.
Given the building's location across busy Babcock Street, university staff has been working for months to proactively address pedestrian safety concerns with the city of Melbourne and the Florida Department of Transportation.
For more information, visit www.fit.edu.
Community service award from Florida Health Care Coalition
Brevard County's Board of County Commissioners, Brevard County Health Department and the Brevard County Medical Society were recently named recipients of the 2012 Community Service Award presented by the Florida Health Care Coalition.
The coalition recognized the three organizations for the Primary Access to Health Clinic partnership. The PATH Clinic was established to meet the needs of low-income, underinsured adult residents of Brevard County, who are without health care benefits, below 100 percent of the Federal Poverty Level.
The program has expanded services in central Brevard County, with outreach to north Brevard County, and established a new clinic at the Melbourne Health Department.
The Florida Health Care Coalition is a 28-year-old organization that represents nearly 2 million members of public and private sector employers. Its goal is to improve the quality of health care while reducing the rising rate of health care costs and educating consumers.
For more information, visit www.flhcc.org.
For more information on the Primary Access to Health program, visit www.doh.state.fl.us/chdbrevard/pers_hlth/path.htm.
'Blasting Off To Save More Lives'
The Central Brevard Humane Society is "Blasting Off to Save More Lives" during the 2012 ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge, which runs through Oct. 31.
The Humane Society will be trying to save at least 300 more lives, as its staff did the same time last year, for a chance at more than $500,000 in grant funding, including a grand prize of $100,000.
During the Humane Society's "Blasting Off" campaign, it will be offering special promotions, like 50 percent off adoption fees on all cats and dogs, and free microchipping, rabies vaccines and pet care products.
Individuals that adopt a new "fur kid" during the challenge will have an opportunity to spin the "Fuzzy Wheel of Fury" for a chance to "win" additional adoption savings!
The 2012 ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge is a nationwide competition for animal shelters aimed at getting more animals adopted or returned to their owners than ever before.
For more information, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343 or visit www.crittersavers.com.
National Hurricane Center director visits NWS Melbourne
The Director of the National Hurricane Center, Dr. Richard Knabb, recently visited the Melbourne National Weather Service office.
Dr. Knabb and Melbourne forecasters discussed possible future enhancements to hurricane forecast and warning information, effective communication of a unified message and how detailed, local hazard information can most effectively complement NHC track and intensity forecasts. A special session was also held for emergency managers. Emergency Managers.
The National Weather Service is the primary source of weather data, forecasts and warnings for the United States and its territories.
For more information, visit www.nhc.noaa.gov/staff/knabb_2012.pdf or call (321) 255-0212.
- For Hometown News