PLA June 2016

Page 20

Firewall Serve-A-Thon Has Big Impact in Plantation and Sunrise

SECTION news school HEAD



n Saturday, April 30th Firewall Centers hosted its third annual Serve-AThon, presented by Regent Bank, a hands-on opportunity for students to learn the value of giving back while making a lasting difference in their neighborhoods. More than 400 Firewall Centers’ students, their mentors, staff and volunteers engaged in service projects throughout Broward County. Firewall Centers is a nonprofit organization that runs daily after-school programs in eight Broward public middle and high schools including Plantation Middle and Bair Middle in Sunrise. The program helps kids achieve success, build character and teaches them to be servant leaders. “It was a pleasure for Regent Bank to sponsor the Serve-A-Thon again this year,” said Giselle Baytona, vice president/commercial loan officer of Regent Bank and a Firewall Centers’ board member. “What a privilege to see 400 kids and volunteers serving our community. These kids are the future of our country; it is so important to teach them how to serve others in order to become great leaders.” Students started early in the morning with a breakfast donated by Walmart. Firewall students from Plantation Middle along with students from Blanche Ely High and Pompano Middle served at Fort Lauderdale’s Snyder Park mulching trails, painting picnic tables and restoring the butterfly garden. A group from Bair Middle in Sunrise and Lauderhill 6-12 STEM-MED sorted and packaged meals for the hungry at Feeding South Florida in Pembroke Park. “The students were very enthusiastic. You could just see them in the future as outstanding adults by the way they served now as children,” said Pat Colangelo, Director of Community Engagement and Associate Director of Operations for Trinity International University Florida. Firewall was established in 2003 in response to the death of a thirteen year old girl who overdosed on drugs while left unsupervised during after-school hours. Ever since, the agency has been operating daily after-school tutoring and mentoring centers for at-risk students that instill character values and promote academic success, supporting them as they strive toward their greatest potential. For the 2015/2016 school year, Firewall’s T.H.I.N.K. (Take charge, Have a plan, Involve the right people, Never quit, Keep giving back) Leadership program is serving

Charleson Macxeus, Firewall Plantation Middle School student

400 Broward county students. The program’s overarching objective is to improve performance outcomes among at-risk students as related to their school attendance, behavior, and course performance, thus helping them to ultimately achieve self-sufficiency as they pursue their life goals. You can learn more about Firewall Centers and how you can get involved at or follow them at

South Plantation High School Advances to the Final Round of XQ: The Super School Project BY JILL SHARPE


n Friday, April 8, 2016, South Plantation High School advanced to the final competition round of XQ: The Super School Project. This new educational challenge from the XQ Institute, with philanthropist Laurene Powell Jobs, received more than 700 applications from 45 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. More than 10,000 people participated in teams to submit the online application. Five institutions will receive a collective $50 million to change education for high school students in America.

“The Super School Project is an opportunity for our District to rethink the entire high school experience and receive feedback directly from our students and the community,” said Broward County Public Schools Superintendent Robert W. Runcie. “We are proud of the South Plantation High team for their hard work, innovative thinking and advancing to the final round.” The Super South Plantation Pathways of Learning Project focuses on high-quality, projectbased learning with real-world applications. The project proposal discusses an array of educational concepts such as: ▸▸ Collaborating virtually with students in classrooms around the globe ▸▸ Experiencing flipped and blended learning paired with internships ▸▸ Understanding environmentally-conscious principles ▸▸ Experiencing field trips with hands-on activities to analyze environments ▸▸ Participating as lead-learners and advisors ▸▸ Comprehending the sustainability of food through health and nutrition programs ▸▸ Reimagining the classroom with students moving around and interacting within the classroom, instead of sitting in a seat. Winners of the XQ Super School Project will be announced in August 2016.

The Super School Project Student team at South Plantation High School.



Students hard at work on their project proposal.

Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.