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News-Gazette Photo/Marc Clery
Lisa Baker holds her daughter Maya’s hand as they walk to St. Cloud Elementary School on the first day of school on Monday.

New year brings new curriculum, technology to Osceola School District

Posted on August 20, 2014 at 11:45 am

By Tiffanie Reynolds Staff Writer The 2014-15 school year is shaping up to be one of change in Osceola County, as students not only have a new curriculum and state testing, but they also are becoming more technology-friendly. This is the first year that Osceola County, as well as the rest of the state of Florida, will be teaching on the new Florida State Standards. Passed this spring, the Florida

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  • Plans change for new Poinciana Community Center

    Posted on August 15, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    By Tiffanie Reynolds Staff Writer A presentation from Osceola County Commissioner Brandon Arrington at the Aug. 12 Association of Poinciana Villages (APV) board meeting has temporarily halted plans for a recreational pool in front of the Poinciana Community Center. The APV board voted to delay its decision for the pool for a month, but continue with the plans for renovating the current Poinciana Community Center building as well as a

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  • County luring in UCF research center

    Posted on August 15, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    By Ken Jackson Staff Writer It will take a collaborative, community effort for Osceola County to become an epicenter for the sensor research industry before the end of the decade. That was the message at a breakfast event Tuesday at Osceola Heritage Park put on by the Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission. It brought industry partners together who will work toward bringing a University of Central Florida research facility to

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Kissimmee

Osceola crash leaves one man dead

Posted on August 15, 2014 at 3:20 pm

A Kissimmee man was killed in a fatal car accident on Hickory Tree Road on Friday morning. The male driver, 52, was driving northbound in a 1998 Ford Explorer, when he lost control and traveled off of the road. In attempting to turn back onto the road, the vehicle overturned and struck a fence, ejecting the driver and pinning him underneath the vehicle, according to Florida Highway Patrol reports. He

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  • Paul Ryan makes stop in Kissimmee for book tour

    Posted on August 15, 2014 at 12:46 pm

    By Tiffanie Reynolds Staff Writer Congressman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., the 2012 vice presidential candidate, will be in Kissimmee as part of a Florida tour for his upcoming book “The Way Forward: Renewing the American Idea.” It is one of nine stops for Ryan, who will be at Books-A-Million on W. Osceola Parkway in Kissimmee at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 23.  He will also visit six cities in Texas and

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  • Come and fly with Peter Pan

    Posted on August 14, 2014 at 4:32 pm

    By Peter Covino A&E Editor You are never to old for Peter Pan, and adults and youngsters can get to see the latest version of this classic tale as the Osceola Center for the Arts presents Peter Pan, weekends through Aug. 31. Based on J.M. Barrie’s classic tale, Peter Pan, the show, will be presented just as you remember it when you were a kid. Peter and the sometimes-not-so-nice Tinkerbell,

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St Cloud

File Photos
St. Cloud Deputy Police Chief Vinny Shepard, right, and Officer Corey Targia were some of the first to get down and dirty during a June preview of the Robo Mud Run, an extreme 5K event that pits participants against an onslaught of obstacles.

Robo Mud Run benefits St. Cloud families, charities

Posted on August 20, 2014 at 12:51 pm

By Tiffanie Reynolds Staff Writer With the combined funds from two Robo Mud Run events, the St. Cloud Police Department gave $20,000 to local charities and families in need. The police department has been able to raise more than $80,000, with the department raising $40,000 during this year’s Robo Mud Run event. Of that $40,000, the department gave $5,000 to the Bradtmuller and Cortez family, a city and police department

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  • St. Cloud High School students earn medals at national leadership conference

    Posted on August 20, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    Submitted Photo
Third row from left: Nyasia Minaya, Jarisabel Ferrao, Mariah Cruz, Emmalyne Aleman. Second row  from left: Ashley Iaciofano, Destiny Kauffman, April Boyer, Tanisha Hernandez Payton Harvey and Jennifer Grajales. First row from left: Hailey Steuer, Payton Harvey, Jennifer Grajales, and Victoria Smith.

First row - Hailey Steuer,

    St. Cloud High School students brought home medals as they competed at the 2014 Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) National Leadership Conference this past July. The following 12 students earned top marks in the following events: Gold Medals: Nyasia Minaya and Jarisabel Ferrao: Chapter service project display entitled “Focus on My Abilities” working with students with disabilities. Mariah Cruz: chapter in review display. Destiny Kauffman and April

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  • Over 2,000 collectible coins found in abadoned home

    Posted on August 15, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    St. Cloud city workers found about 30 pounds of collectible silver coins at the abandoned St. Cloud home shown above.

    By Tiffanie Reynolds Staff Writer A recently abandoned St. Cloud home proved to be a treasure trove as city workers found 30.6 pounds of silver coins during the building’s demolition on April 22. The workers turned the coins over to the St. Cloud Police Department, which counted a total of 861 half dollars, 1,016 quarters, 202 dimes and three nickels dating from 1917 to 1964. The city plans to appraise

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Poinciana

Osceola schools given 5-star status

Posted on August 20, 2014 at 12:45 pm

Lisa D’Cato Poinciana Writer The start of the new school year is a great time for parents to get involved with their child’s school. Thirty-seven Osceola County schools have been designated as Five Star Schools earning the Florida Department of Education’s most prestigious award for community involvement. The award is presented each year to schools that have shown evidence of exemplary family, school, and community involvement. To qualify, each school

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  • Poinciana Youth Sports Association

    Posted on August 20, 2014 at 12:26 pm

    Poinciana Youth Sports Association has announced the presentation of two new recreational youth sports programs to the Poinciana community. These sports programs are open to any boy or girl within the ages of 5-14 regardless of skill level. We will be starting these activities in the fall of 2014 and look forward to meeting all interested parents who want their children to participate in fun, safe, educational and affordable recreational

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  • Plans change for new Poinciana Community Center

    Posted on August 15, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    By Tiffanie Reynolds Staff Writer A presentation from Osceola County Commissioner Brandon Arrington at the Aug. 12 Association of Poinciana Villages (APV) board meeting has temporarily halted plans for a recreational pool in front of the Poinciana Community Center. The APV board voted to delay its decision for the pool for a month, but continue with the plans for renovating the current Poinciana Community Center building as well as a

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Celebration

Summer Smokeout to benefit CHS boosters

Posted on August 13, 2014 at 11:00 am

Celebration Golf Club will host the Summer Smokeout Barbecue Feast from 4 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 23, at Celebration with all-you-can-eat smoked ribs and wings, a pig roast, and a build your own brisket burger slider bar. Priced at $9.99 for adults and $6.99 for children under 10, the festivities also will include live music, games, and old fashion fun. Proceeds will benefit the Celebration High School Athletic Boosters.

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  • Osceola youth wins Audubon photo prize

    Posted on August 6, 2014 at 12:03 pm

    Theurer

    Osceola County teenager Mason Theurer won second place in Orange Audubon Society’s (OAS) 2014 Kit and Sidney Chertok 26th Annual Florida Native Nature Photography Contest (youth category) for his image of a sand hill crane chick. The win earned Mason, 13, a red ribbon and cash from OAS plus a gift card from Colonial Photo & Hobby, the contest co-sponsor.  Mason also won two honorable mentions for his images of

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  • Dozens of TV reality stars return to Celebration, July 31-Aug. 3

    Posted on July 18, 2014 at 10:13 am

              By Peter Covino A&E Editor If you love reality shows on TV, the place to be in just two weeks is the sixth annual Hearts of Reality event at Celebration. Winners and contestants from hit shows such as Amazing Race, Survivor, Big Brother and The Apprentice, some 140 reality stars in all, will take place at the four-day event, July 31-Aug. 3 at the big

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Schools

News-Gazette Photo/Marc Clery
Lisa Baker holds her daughter Maya’s hand as they walk to St. Cloud Elementary School on the first day of school on Monday.

New year brings new curriculum, technology to Osceola School District

Posted on August 20, 2014 at 11:45 am

By Tiffanie Reynolds Staff Writer The 2014-15 school year is shaping up to be one of change in Osceola County, as students not only have a new curriculum and state testing, but they also are becoming more technology-friendly. This is the first year that Osceola County, as well as the rest of the state of Florida, will be teaching on the new Florida State Standards. Passed this spring, the Florida

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  • Technology expands in district classrooms for 2014-15 school year

    Posted on August 13, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    By Tiffanie Reynolds Staff Writer Riding on the heels of the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) program last school year, the Osceola County School District plans to make campuses more connected and tech-centered for 2014-15 school year. Chief of Information and Technology Services Angela Marino, Instructional Technology Director Mel Pace and other district staff introduced a completely digital curriculum to Kissimmee Middle School as well as extended campus Wi-Fi coverage

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  • High school report cards to be re-issued Thursday

    Posted on July 23, 2014 at 4:59 pm

    Osceola County School District announced that, starting Thursday, re-issued report cards can be picked up at all high schools except for Zenith and Challenger. Public Information Officer Dana Schafer said that staff at both those high schools is working closely with the district office to validate all grades and get the report cards printed. Once they are ready, a separate call will be made to parents of Zenith and Challenger

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Crime News

Desselles

Homeless man jailed over inappropriately touching himself near playground

Posted on August 19, 2014 at 4:27 pm

Osceola County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a homeless man for inappropriately touching himself while watching children at a Kissimmee apartment complex playground on Monday. Michael Desselles, 30, was charged with lewd and lascivious behavior. Deputies responded to Victory Village Apartments on 4596 W. U.S Highway 192 in Kissimmee at 7:39 p.m. Monday. They spoke to two women who live in the complex, who said that while they were watching their children

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  • Registered felon, sex offender arrested for robbery at Bank of America in Poinciana

    Posted on August 16, 2014 at 4:00 pm

    Merlin

    Osceola County Sheriff’s detectives with the robbery unit arrested Jacques Kenneth Merlin, a registered felon and sex offender, for his involvement in a robbery that occurred at Bank of America in Poinciana. Merlin was charged with robbery and grand theft. The investigation began on Friday at approximately 2:35 p.m., when Osceola County Sheriff’s deputies responded to Bank of America located at 35 South Doverplum Ave. in Poinciana. Upon arrival, deputies

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  • Female body found in ChampionsGate area

    Posted on August 1, 2014 at 1:25 pm

    Ocseola County and Orange County Sheriff departments investigate a body found on Osceola County Road 532 south of Kissimme on Friday, August 1, 2014. News-Gazette Photo/Marc Clery

    By Ken Jackson Staff Writer Sheriff’s deputies from Osceola and Orange counties are working together to investigate the identity of a body found by a maintenance crew Friday morning east of ChampionsGate. Around 9:30 a.m., Sheriff’s deputies received a call from a maintenance crew member who reported discovering a body in a heavily wooded area off County Road 532 near the entrance of Reunion, between Old Lake Wilson Road and

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