The St. Johns County School District is encouraging parents to register kindergarten students and new students to the county and/or the public school system before school begins on August 23.
Even though elementary and middle schools are currently operating out of their area high school, parents may contact schools at their regular phone number and register their children. Hours of operation are 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Early registration helps the district prepare for the appropriate number of teachers before school starts.

To be eligible for public kindergarten, children must be five years old on or before September 1 and must reside in St. Johns County. To register for first grade, children must be six years old by September 1 and have successfully completed kindergarten. The child’s certified birth certificate is required at the time of registration. Only the legal name is acceptable on student records.
“Parents must register children at the school where they have been zoned for the 2010-2011 school year,” according to Sallyanne Smith, Director for Student Services. “They should bring one of the following proofs of residency: a mortgage statement, lease or rent agreement. An additional proof of residency is required, preferably an electric bill.”
In addition to the child’s certified birth certificate, Florida law requires any student entering a Florida school for the first time to show proof of certain immunizations and a physical examination. Parents are also encouraged to bring proof of the child’s social security number.
A child’s immunization record should be taken to the St. Johns County Health Department, 1955 U.S.1 South, or to a private physician. If all required immunizations have been received, the health department or private physician will issue HRS Form 680, which will permit the child to enter school in Florida. In addition to other required immunizations, children must have received two measles immunizations (preferably MMR), two varicella (chicken pox) vaccines and at least the first Hepatitis B Shot before starting public or private kindergarten.
A physical examination that has been performed within one year prior to enrollment in school will be accepted. Physical examinations can be obtained from either a private physician or from the county health department.
The purpose of early registration is to help reduce the number of students that need to be enrolled at the beginning of school. Parents should visit the individual school website for registration information. Additional information on registration and school attendance zones may be obtained from the Student Services Office at 547-7598.

Wards Creek Power Library    The St. Johns County School District (SJCSD) recently received one of the state’s ten 2010 Florida Power-Library Schools (FPLS) awards. The school being recognized is Wards Creek Elementary School (WCES).
This statewide recognition is awarded to schools that involve their school faculty members, parents and students in developing and implementing outstanding library media programs focused on student achievement.
Wards Creek Elementary joins the two other St. Johns County schools that received the FPLS award in 2009, Timberlin Creek Elementary and Ponte Vedra High School.  There are currently only 32 schools in the state which have been awarded this recognition after undergoing a rigorous review process.
Based on the FPLS reviewers’ evaluations, the winning schools’ library media programs received excellent scores in the following components: Instruction, Curriculum/Assessment, Resource Management, Program Administration, Environment and Advocacy.
The FPLS award is valid for a period of three years. During that time, the schools have agreed to mentor other schools from around the state in their quest to develop quality library media programs.
The FPLS award is sponsored by the Florida Association of Supervisors of Media (FASM) in collaboration with the Florida Association of Media in Education (FAME) and the Florida Department of Education. The Florida Power-Library Program is based on the Colorado Power Libraries Program that highlights schools with a collaborative approach to improving student achievement.
WCES will receive a banner, and Principal Don Campbell and School Librarian Vance Edeker will receive lapel pins in recognition of their success. The formal presentation of the FPLS award will be made at the Opening General Session of the FAME Conference on Thursday, November 4 in Orlando.