At the Kennedy Space Center on Thursday, Florida’s First Lady Ann Scott and Education Commissioner Pam Stewart recognized the winners of the 7th annual Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! statewide public service announcement (PSA) contest. The PSA contest award ceremony concludes a week-long celebration coordinated by the department’s Just Read, Florida! office that highlights literacy and reading in Florida schools.
“I’m so excited to see students encouraging each other to read and improve their literacy skills,” said First Lady Ann Scott. “The creativity and technical expertise used in creating these PSAs will serve these students well as they continue their pursuit of education. Congratulations to all the participants and the winners for a job well done!”
“Congratulations to all the students participating in the Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! PSA contest,” said Education Commissioner Pam Stewart. “Literacy is a critical skill that is the building block for lifelong learning. I’m proud of these students for taking the initiative to participate in the contest and share the importance of reading with their peers.”
To compete in the PSA contest, students created a short video showcasing this year’s theme, “Reading Accelerates Success.” Winners were chosen at elementary, middle and high school levels, with the winning schools awarded prizes sponsored by the Florida Education Foundation – $1,000 for first place, $500 for second place, and $250 for third place. The winning PSAs will be featured on the Just Read, Florida! website and the Department of Education’s social media pages.
The winners of the 2015 Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! statewide PSA contest include:
1st Place: Cambridge Elementary School, Brevard County
2nd Place: Ketterlinus Elementary School, St. John’s County
3rd Place: Forest City Elementary School, Seminole County
1st Place: Explorer K-8 School, Hernando County
2nd Place: Dunnellon Middle School, Marion County
3rd Place: Baker Middle School, Okaloosa County
1st Place: Choice High School, Okaloosa County
2nd Place: Marianna High School, Jackson County
3rd Place: Niceville High School, Okaloosa County
The goal of Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! is to promote literacy throughout the state by raising awareness of the programs and projects offered by the Department of Education and its partner agencies and organizations. Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! is sponsored by the Florida Lottery; National Geographic; Dairy Council of Florida, a Division of Florida Dairy Farmers; Scholastic; Florida Department of Health; Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles and the Florida Highway Patrol; and the Kennedy Space Center.
“Statewide and local partners make notable contributions each day that enhance education in Florida’s classrooms,” said Education Commissioner Pam Stewart. “I’m grateful to our Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! partners for their role in ensuring Florida students get a high-quality education that will help them succeed in college, career and life.”
“Since 1988, the Florida Lottery has invested more than $27 billion in education in Florida,” said Cynthia O’Connell, secretary of the Florida Lottery. “We are committed to ensuring Florida students receive a world-class education that will prepare them to succeed when faced with the challenges of the future.”
Additionally, members of the Florida Highway Patrol volunteered in schools throughout the state to read the book “A Day in the Life of a Police Officer.”
“By reading to our children and encouraging them to read on their own, we are investing in both the future of our youth and of our state,” said Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles Executive Director Terry L. Rhodes.
“Reading is an essential part of the learning process and we need to do all that we can to foster good reading habits in our children,” Florida Highway Patrol’s Colonel David Brierton added.
For more information about other Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! events, visit Just Read, Florida!