Lake County CTST Joins Effort to Collect Needed school Supplies for Students

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EUSTIS — The Lake County Community Traffic Safety Team (CTST) is joining efforts with other community partners in assisting the Educational Foundation of Lake County with their annual Back to School Supply Drive. Residents are being asked to donate new or gently used school items, which will be used to assist Lake County students with the tools needed to facilitate learning.

“This is a great opportunity for the community to support local students,” said Sgt. Tom McKane, Chairman of the Lake County CTST. “If everyone in Lake County donated just one item, it could have such a positive impact on so many students.”

Items being collected by the Lake County CTST can be dropped off through August 12th at the Lake County Department of Public Works located at 437 Ardice Ave., Eustis, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Suggested items include pens (red, black and blue ink), pencils, colored art markers, erasers, colored art pencils, pencil keepers, protractors, three-ring loose leaf paper (wide rule and college rule), calculators and highlighters.

The Lake County CTST is a multi-jurisdictional agency with cooperation between Lake County, its municipalities, other organizations and concerned citizens. The CTST uses a multi-disciplinary approach to solve roadway safety problems in Lake County. The team is comprised of individuals representing engineering, law enforcement, emergency services, traffic-safety education and the public.

For more information about the Lake County Community Traffic Safety Team, call Cheryl Sutherland at (352) 483-9048 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . For information about the Educational Foundation of Lake County, call (352) 326-1265 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Cooper Memorial Library Recently Played Host to Chinese Librarians

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CLERMONT —The Lake County Library Services Division recently welcomed visiting Chinese librarian representatives to Cooper Memorial Library as part of the U.S. Host Program for Librarians from China. 

The program, funded by the Institute for Museum and Library Services, is organized jointly by the Asian Library and the Mortenson Center for International Programs at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the Chinese American Librarians Association (CALA). The goal of the program is to give Chinese delegates the opportunity to observe first-hand the day-to-day operations of select public libraries in the U.S., and to share stories and experiences about libraries in China.

Pictured left to right: Wen Defeng, Boyd Bruce, Denise English, Min Tong and Xu XinluThe visiting librarians, Mr. Xinlu Xu, Director of the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region Library and Mr. Defeng Wen, Secretary General of the Heilongjiang Library visited with representatives from Lake-Sumter Community College (LSCC) and Cooper Memorial Library on Wednesday, June 22nd. During the two-hour visit, Denise English, Director of LSCC’s Library Services, and Boyd Bruce, Assistant Director for Public Services at Cooper Memorial Library, talked with the visitors through an interpreter, Min Tong, Reference/Instructional Librarian for the University of Central Florida Libraries, about the varying roles that libraries play in both the U.S. and China, and how they differ.

“It was amazing how the library system in China is very culturally oriented,” said Boyd. “They offer many cultural-based events that showcase the diversity in their region. Some of the programs that they host, such as grade-school plays and high-school Web development competitions would be great to start implementing here in Lake County.”

Boyd went on to state that the libraries in China act as a conduit between local governments and the people.  They are relied upon heavily by the community as the main clearing house for important data, such as vital statistics.  Unlike in the U.S. where libraries have a vast network of resources for their data collection, such resources are not available to libraries in China. Librarian staff there must analyze and compile raw data so that it can be used by patrons.

“Overall it was a fantastic experience,” Boyd said. “We were thrilled to be a part of it.”

Cooper Memorial Library, located on the LSCC’s South Lake Campus at 2525 Oakley Seaver Drive in Clermont, is a collaborative public and academic library between Lake County, LSCC and the University of Central Florida. The two-story, 50,000 square-foot facility opened in August 2009. In 2010, the number of items checked out at the library reached 413,279, and the visitor count totaled 314,545.

The operating hours for the library are Monday-Thursday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Friday-Saturday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information about Cooper Memorial Library, call (352) 536-2275 or log on to www.mylakelibrary.org.

Lake County Property Taxes for Schools Slated to Decline

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altTAVARES — At its special meeting on Monday the Lake County School Board received notice the required local effort (RLE) as set by the Florida Department of Education is proposed to be a millage rate of 7.394 for the 2011-2012 fiscal year.

The RLE determines what millage the School Board must approve in order to qualify for state funding. Millage determines how much property owners will pay in taxes. For example, the tentative 7.394 millage rate applied to a home assessed at a taxable value of $100,000 would pay school taxes of $739.40, or $12.90 less than last year when the millage rate was set at 7.523.

The School Board approved a measure to advertise the tentative millage and budget. The first public hearing for the tentative millage and budget is scheduled for Monday, July 25, at 5:30 p.m. in the County Commission Chambers, located on the second floor of the Lake County Administration Building, 315 W. Main St., Tavares. The final public hearing for the tentative millage rate and budget is scheduled for Monday, September 21, at 5:30 p.m. in the same location.

Sections of Lake County Schools’ proposed budget, including those from schools and departments, are online. To review proposed budget information for 2011-12 fiscal year, log on to www.lake.k12.fl.us and click on the “2011-2012 Proposed Budget” link.

Two Little Girls need your help!

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7 Month Old Ella Reese and 3 Yr old Malia Jusczyk are having a yard sale to raise money for their cancer treatments. They both have neuroblastoma which is a rare and aggressive childhood cancer.
The sale is on Saturday July 16th, 8am - 2pm
The address is 10628 Lake Hill Drive Clermont, Florida 34711
A lot of nice things have been donated for the sale so come out and get yourself a bargain!
If you have anything you would like to donate for the sale please email John Tremblay at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

For more information on Ella and Malia you can go to their websites: www.maliacrushescancer.com  and  www.ellafightsback.com


Lake County Schools Embarks on Series of Summertime School Consolidations

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altTAVARES — While students left school campuses last week and teachers departed this week for their summer vacations, staff and administrators working feverishly on preparations for the upcoming school year, which begins on Aug. 22, are facing some different challenges this summer as the School District looks to cut expenses.

Beginning Monday, June 20, a number of school principals and staff will bid farewell to their schools and depart for a nearby school campus. The plan to consolidate school sites during the summer was approved by the School Board on May 23 and is estimated to save the School District $600,000 in utility costs. Below is a list of schools and where staff will be located until Monday, Aug. 8:

•    Astatula Elementary, 13925 Florida Ave. (staff located in cafeteria)
•    East Ridge High, 13322 Excalibur Road, Clermont
     o    Clermont Elementary
     o    Clermont Middle
     o    Cypress Ridge Elementary
     o    Windy Hill Middle
•    East Ridge Middle, 13201 Excalibur Road, Clermont (staff located in building 2, room 101)
•    Eustis Elementary, 714 E. Citrus Ave.
•    Eustis Heights Elementary (located at Lake Technical Center, 2001 Kurt St., Eustis)
•    Eustis High, 1300 E. Washington Ave.
     o    Eustis Middle
     o    Seminole Springs Elementary
•    Grassy Lake Elementary, 1100 Fosgate Road, Minneola
•    Groveland Elementary, 930 Parkwood St. (staff located in cafeteria)
•    Leesburg Elementary, 2229 South St. (staff located in cafeteria)
•    Leesburg High, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way
     o    Beverly Shores Elementary
     o    Carver Middle
     o    Fruitland Park Elementary
     o    Oak Park Middle
•    Lost Lake Elementary, 1901 Johns Lake Road, Clermont
     o    Pine Ridge Elementary
•    Mount Dora High, 700 N. Highland Ave.
•    Mount Dora Middle, 1405 Lincoln Ave. (staff located in cafeteria)
•    Rimes Early Learning Center, 3101 School View St., Leesburg
•    Sawgrass Bay Elementary, 16325 Superior Blvd., Clermont (staff located in cafeteria)
•    Sorrento Elementary, 24605 Wallick Road (staff located in cafeteria)
•    South Lake High, 15600 Silver Eagle Road, Groveland
     o    Gray Middle
•    Tavares Elementary, 720 E. Clifford St. (staff located in cafeteria)
     o    Triangle Elementary
•    Treadway Elementary, 10619 Treadway School Road, Leesburg
•    Tavares High, 603 N. New Hampshire Ave.
     o    Tavares Middle
•    Umatilla High, 320 N. Trowell Ave.
     o    Umatilla Elementary
     o    Umatilla Middle
•    Villages Elementary, 695 Rolling Acres Road, Lady Lake (staff located in music room)

While many of the elementary and middle schools are relocating, principals and staff at some elementary schools are moving to their school cafeterias as the Early Learning Center (ELC) summer camp will be operating out of this portion of each school. Principals and staff from East Ridge Middle and Mount Dora Middle are remaining on campus as different programs are being hosted at these two schools.

The 12 ELC summer camps (Astatula Elem., Eustis Elem., Grassy Lake Elem., Groveland Elem., Leesburg Elem., Lost Lake Elem., Rimes Early Learning Center, Sorrento Elem., Sawgrass Bay Elem., Tavares Elem. and Villages Elem.) are operating from June 13th to Aug. 12th. These 12 sites will remain open July 5-8, even though the rest of the School District will close for the week in an effort to save another $145,000 in utility costs. Other exceptions to the summer school consolidation plan include the third grade summer school sites of Eustis Elem., Lost Lake Elem., Mascotte Charter Elem., Rimes Early Learning Center and Tavares Elem.

Regardless of where principals and staff move in the District, main school phone numbers will continue to be answered. For a complete list of school contact information, log on to www.lake.k12.fl.us.

In addition to the school consolidations on June 20, the School District will begin new summertime hours of Monday-Thursday from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The four-day workweek is expected to save the District about $128,000 in utility costs. Lake County Schools will resume its normal business hours of Monday-Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Aug. 8.
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