Tag art reaps rewards
Forty-three Hillsborough County schools participated in the Kids Tag Art Program for the 2022-2023 school year, yielding more than 1,000 plate design entries. The Kids Art Program is a creative fundraiser that allows students to showcase their artistic abilities by designing front license vanity plates in art class.
The plate designs are printed on metal plates and sold to family, friends and the public. Proceeds from the plate sales and sponsorships go back to the participating schools to help support their arts program. This year the program raised more than $37,800, and to date, the program across the state of Florida raised more than $2 million.
Top honorees this year were Aaliyah Greene-Walker from Dunbar Elementary School, who received the Sponsor’s Choice Award; and Katilyn Pace from McDonald Elementary, who received the Tax Collector’s Choice Award.
For a complete list of each school’s winner and artwork, visit https://www.hillstax.org/kids-tag-art/tag-art-winners-2022-2023/.
For information about the Kids Tag Art Program and other initiatives by the Hillsborough County Tax Collector’s Office, visit HillsTax.org.
Flag Day lesson
Wreaths Across America (WAA) has announced the addition of new Flag Day lesson plans to its TEACH Program, which provides free access to curriculum and educational resources for all, according to a news release.
Flag Day is celebrated on June 14 and commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States. The new lesson plans are designed for all grade levels and learning abilities, and have an objective for civic ideals and practices.
“An understanding of civic ideals and practices is critical for full participation in society and is an essential component of education for citizenship,” said Cindy Tatum, WAA curriculum developer and Gold Star mom, in the release. “This theme enables students to learn about the rights and responsibilities of citizens of a democracy, and to appreciate the importance of active citizenship.”
To learn more or to download the plans, visit WreathsAcrossAmerica.org/teach.
Summer break tips
With schools in ‘recess’ for summer break, Dr. Tammy Lowery Zacchilli, a professor of psychology at Saint Leo University, offers these useful tips to help avoid your children having meltdowns or experiencing boredom.
- Consider your own schedule for the summer and try to take some time off to spend with your children this summer.
- Take a vacation or staycation. Take a road trip or make quick trips to the beach, park, zoo, aquarium or amusement park.
- Check out camps offered in your area. Some local elementary schools offer camps, but there also are programs for dance, music, gymnastics, art, and more. Visit Fun4TampaKids.com/Camps/Variety-Camps/. Saint Leo University also offers camps ranging from athletics to robotics and more. Visit SaintLeoCamps.com.
- Plan activities for days at home. Break out board games, make chalk drawings in the driveway, make crafts, paint pictures with the kids, play outside, check out books from the library.
- Tiana Alfsen, Wesley Chapel: Dean’s List, University of Wisconsin-Madison
- Emersen Angel, Lutz: Dean’s List, University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa
- Anthony Rocco Becht, Wesley Chapel: Dean’s List, Iowa State University-Ames
- Camryn Bliss, Lutz: Chancellor’s Honor Roll, University of Mississippi
- Cameron Douglas Coughlin, Land O’ Lakes: Dean’s List, Iowa State University-Ames
- Caitlyn Culpepper, Odessa: Chancellor’s Honor Roll, University of Mississippi
- Gabrielle Fontanez, Land O’ Lakes: Dean’s List, Saint Leo University, and inductee into and board secretary of the PSI CHI International Honor Society for psychology
- Angelica C. Gonzalez, Lutz: Dean’s List, Iowa State University-Ames
- Abigail Greene, Lutz: Dean’s List, Pennsylvania Western University, California, Pennsylvania
- Madeline Griggs, Odessa: Dean’s List, University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa
- Christian Hewett, Odessa: Dean’s List, University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa
- Logan Hinsberg, Odessa: Dean’s List, University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa
- Graydon Horn, Odessa: President’s List, University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa
- Igor Christian Ibaka Kabasele, San Antonio: Bachelor of Applied Arts and Sciences, Midwestern State University, Wichita Falls, Texas
- Noah Kilpatrick, Odessa: Dean’s List, University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa
- Charles King, Odessa: President’s List, Georgia Southern University-Statesboro
- Alexis Leighty, Lutz: Dean’s List, Lincoln Memorial University, Harrogate, Tennessee
- Midhun Raj, Lutz: Bachelor of Science, Computer Science, Oregon State University-Corvallis
- Kaitlyn Ryan, Lutz: Chancellor’s Honor Roll, University of Mississippi
- Christiana Till, Odessa: President’s List, University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa
Truck driver partnership
FleetForce Truck Driving School and Pasco-Hernando State College (PHSC) have launched a partnership to recruit commercial truck drivers in West Pasco and surrounding areas, according to a FleetForce news release.
PHSC’s West Campus is now home to one of FleetForce’s six new locations statewide. This partnership helps generate an additional 3,000 commercial truck drivers annually, helping to alleviate the critical need for commercial drivers. The partnership, with assistance from the State of Florida and CareerSource Pasco Hernando includes testing and on-site training, the release said.
FleetForce training programs are designed to teach all the mandatory skills drivers need to obtain a Certified Driver’s License (CDL). It offers a variety of options to help people enroll as soon as possible, including a Pre-Hire Program, created in collaboration with the Florida Trucking Association, to match qualified drivers with potential employers who may sponsor them. FleetForce offers training opportunities for Class A, B, and C licensees, and students can graduate in as little as one month after enrollment, training and passing the CDL exam.
The GFWC Lutz-Land O’ Lakes Woman’s Club sponsored an Essay Contest for fifth-graders at Lutz Elementary School, to encourage and reward students’ writing skills. First prize received a $100 Barnes & Noble gift card; second prize, $50 gift card; and two third prizes, $25 gift card. Two Honorable Mention certificates also were awarded.
The Pasco-Hernando State College (PHSC) District Board of Trustees will meet on June 20 at noon, at the PHSC East Campus, 36727 Blanton Road, Building A, in Dade City. Visit Policies.phsc.edu/district-board-trustees/agenda to see a copy of the agenda. For information, email Rhonda Dodge at .
HERricane Summer Camp
Pasco County Emergency Management invites high school students to take part in its inaugural HERricane program from July 17 to July 21 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Pasco County Emergency Operations Center, 8744 Government Drive, Building A, New Port Richey. The free, weeklong program gives young women in ninth through 12th grades the opportunity to explore emergency management-related careers.
The program includes multiple sessions and activities with guest speakers. Each student will receive Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) certification upon completion. The program will count toward the student’s volunteer hours.
Incoming ninth-grade students can apply. Students younger than age 18 will need a parental/legal guardian’s signature.
Interested students should apply no later than June 16 by filling out an application that includes a short essay question, online at tinyurl.com/mw625fe8.
Summer Reading Challenge
Pasco County Libraries has launched its Summer Reading Challenge, “All Together Now,” at all Pasco library locations, now through July 31. Requirements include 600 minutes of reading and record-keeping in the Beanstack app.
Readers who complete the challenge will be entered into a drawing to win a $100 gift card, courtesy of Friends of the Library. Other individual prizes also will be up for grabs at all Pasco library branches.
To learn more, visit MyPas.co/SummerRead2023.
Summer Haul Bus Pass
Students can ride Pasco County Public Transportation (GoPasco) buses all summer through Aug. 31 for just $20. The special student-rate passes can be purchased at these places:
- GoPasco Administrative Office, 8620 Galen Wilson Blvd., New Port Richey
- Pasco County Clerk & Comptroller’s Office, East/West Pasco Government Centers
- Pasco-Hernando State College bookstores – New Port Richey, Dade City and Wesley Chapel
- County libraries, various locations
For more information on the pass and GoPasco bus routes and schedules, visit MyPas.co/SummerBusPass.