District honors Mustang writers

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – The Manatee District School Board honored six outstanding Mustang writers this month.

At its June 24 meeting the board recognized Christian Hill, Gabriella Lavelle, Carly Patterson, Jacob Rine, Danielle Wilson and Victoria Wittner.

Each of these Mustang sophomores scored a 6 on this spring’s Florida Writes assessment. The statewide writing exam is graded on a 1-6 scale.

Manatee Schools Superintendent Rick Mills presented each student with the Superintendent’s Coin of Excellence.

Lakewood Ranch topped the district in number of students who scored a 6.

LRHS Principal finalists meet public July 2

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – The three finalists to become LRHS’s new principal will meet the public July 2.

A forum with parents and stakeholders is scheduled for 6 p.m. in the school auditorium.  Finalists will meanwhile meet with teachers and staff in the cafeteria.

Manatee school officials have not yet named the finalists.  One will replace retiring Principal Linda Nesselhauf, whose last day is scheduled for June 30.


LRHS Art enjoys successful fundraiser

Matthew Bell – LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – LRHS hosted its second annual End of Year Arts Gallery and Fundraiser at May 15 on Lakewood Ranch Main Street. The LRHS Art Program displayed student artwork to raise money for the department.

Fine Arts teacher Abby Flannigan was overjoyed with the results.

“We raised a grand total of $830,” said Flannigan. “We will continue this show for years to come.”

silver starts at art
The LRHS Silver Stars Dance Team performs at the school’s annual Arts Gallery and Fundraiser.

Also attending the event were the Theatre Department, along with Band and Orchestra ensembles.

Theater student Nick Wilcox was proud to be a part of the event.

“My fellow classmates gave an astounding performance,” he said. “I couldn’t help but smile at the end of our act.”

Mustangs React – Final Exams are here

Matthew Bell – LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – LRHS students are in the midst of final exam week, closing out the 2014 school year. They’re both excited and nervous.

Freshman Sarah McKenna is excited for early release days. “Semester exams are definitely a change, although after first semester I feel like I’m better accustomed to the weird half-days. And with the half-days it gives students more time to get out and do things,” she says. “I know that I’ll be hitting the beach with friends on both Friday and Monday.”

Other students are stressing over the sizable tests. Sophomore Matthew Ambrosino believes that “Semester exams have always been a challenge for me. But then again, what student doesn’t freak out about huge finals at the end of the year.”

Junior Jonah Ferber is frustrated over the rumored changes in testing. Ferber says that “It’s going to be bittersweet taking exams, if it is true that we get End of Course Exams every for every class. I think how exams are set up now is perfectly fine.

“In other words, ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.'”

LRHS senior headed for maritime education and career

May Chongwiboon – LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – Most Americans are familiar with the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard. One 2014 LRHS graduate, however, has his sights set on a less famous service. Salvatore Sablan plans to attend the Merchant Marine Academy, majoring in Maritime Transportation with a minor in Logistics.

The United States Merchant Marine Academy, in King’s Point, N.Y., is a service academy that educates and trains licensed Merchant Marine officers. Merchant marine officers serve on cargo ships during peacetime and become part of the Navy if the US goes to war.

A student accepted to the academy, receives government orders directing when to arrive, and when the tour will be complete.

Every male on both sides of Sablan’s family have served the country in one way or another. Sablan’s father, grandfather, and great-grandfather have all been in the Army or Marine Corps. Sablan applied to the Naval Academy, the Merchant Marine Academy, and five schools under an Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps Marine Option Scholarship that he received in December.

Sablan is extremely influenced and inspired by the people around him, considering that every male in his family has served in some way. Also, Sablan has always been surrounded by his father’s lifelong friends who are Marine officers or are recently retired.

Sablan lives by two mottos. The first, “Fortuna Favet Fortibus” (Fortune Favors the Strong), is the motto that belongs to the 3rd Battalion 8th Marines. This is the unit that Sablan’s father served in, and also where he met many of his friends. The second motto is “Acta non verb” (Actions Not Words). This is the Merchant Marine Academy’s motto, and influences Sablan.

“I tell everyone that asks that my ultimate goal is to have a yacht massive enough that I can have smaller cabin cruisers and other boats stored on the inside somehow,” Sablan said, “I hope to be able to make enough so that I can retire down to the islands in the winters and be up here in Florida in the summers.”

Sablan was born in Missouri, and has lived in North Carolina and Virginia as well. Because his father was a Marine, Sablan and his family had to move around a lot. Sablan has been visiting Englewood every year since he was two-years-old and moved to Florida last June.

In his free time, Sablan enjoys going out to the beach with his family, and simply relaxing. Before moving to Florida, Sablan was heavily involved in extra curricular activities, so he never really had the chance to have time to himself.