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Big changes at Education

It's 82° Fahrenheit  27.2 Centigrade in Crown Bay St. Thomas,
80% humidity. Under Partly Cloudy Skies  
Wind out of the East at 6  MPH.   
Barometric Pressure is 29.94 and rising
It is raining now and .03 inches in the last 24 hours. 17.47 for the year so far.
Water temp: 81° in LimeTree Bay St. Thomas and 84 in Christiansted harbor

The national weather forecast calls for  High near 85F. Winds SE at 5 to 10 mph. 30% Chance of rain showers early becoming more widely scattered for the afternoon.

Today is Friday May 27- we welcome: At No Ships Today

At the top of the news on Friday May 27

Here come changes at the Department of Education.  The Commissioner of Education LaVerne Terry held a press conference yesterday to explain the changes that are coming in the next schools year. There is a 9 million dollar budget cut in the works -  that means many changes.  The commissioner confirmed that Evelyn Marcelli Elementary School will close and students will move to either Jane E Tuitt, Ulla Muller or Leonard Dober Schools. There are many principals moving to different schools.  On St Croix it is true that Kurt Vialet is moving from Education Complex to Arthur Richards Junior High and that John Willard will move to the Education Complex.

On St John the principal of Guy Benjamin School is moving to Julius Sprauve School and Whitman Brown of Evelyn Marcelli Elementary School is moving to Coral Bay at the Guy Benjamin School.  Also moving: Lydia Lettsome moving to Leonard Dober, Felix Durand to Joseph Sibilly, Lois Hassel-Habtes to E. Benjamin Oliver School, Laura Chesterfield to Yvonne Milliner Bowsky School, Mario Francis to Edith Williams and Sidney George to Raphael Wheatley Skills Center, and Dahlia Adams to Adult Education.  The budget cuts also mean the loss of some "luxuries."  There will be less money for instructional coaches and other expenses.

To compound the financial crisis, there is an additional goal. The schools will have to reach Adequate Yearly Progress.  In the past all they had to do was get 37.7 % of the students meet national standards in reading and math. BUT from now on, the schools must have 53.3% of the students meet the standard in reading and math to make Adequate Early Progress.  We have to do more with less.

WAPA had a board met and approved a contract with Total for fuel for WAPA's vehicles. They overran the budget and will have to pay $81,000 more than expected.  The contract is through June 30. The Board also approved a contract with Cruzan Rum to upgrade the facilities that serve the distillery.  Cruzan run is on track to produce more rum in the future and they need more watts of power to do it.

Jewelry firm will pay a 4 million dollar fine for selling Black Coral. Don't mess with the coral. It is a violation of the Endangered species act to trade in black coral and Gem Manufacturing of St. Thomas will pay for their error.  Black Coral is considered an endangered species.

The Legislature of the Virgin Islands will discuss the emission of a foul odor that affected the community on St. Croix. In an effort to get further answers, Senate President Russell will reconvene a Committee of the Whole meeting on Friday, May 27 at 6PM. The purpose of Friday’s meeting is to receive testimony from HOVENSA officials as well as a report from the Department of Planning and Natural Resources which will provide further information on the impact of the emission into the atmosphere on St. Croix.

National Alliance on Mental Illness is having a  Mental health Awareness Fair today in Emancipation Garden from 10:00 Am to 3:00 PM. This is all about Family-to-Family help.  There are health screenings, refreshments, give-aways and guest presentations by the Mental health department, Clear Blue Skies, Schneider Hospital Community Services COAST and the Disability Rights Center of the Virgin Islands. Today in Emancipation Garden from 10:00 Am to 3:00 PM.  

Native son Dion Parsons is back to resume his musical workshops with Virgin Islands students on St. Thomas. This week he is at Antilles School, Addelita Cancryn Junior High School, Ivanna Eudora Kean High School working with music students. And you can expect it to be mind boggling. You can see some at

UVI will launch a new program this summer for graduating High School  students who have been accepted to the  Univ as freshman for the fall semester.  They will study reading, math English and speech. on both St. Thomas and St Croix from July 5 through July 29.  Some 40 students can participate on each campus. . The peogram is open to student who will attend UVI in the fall - Call 693-1499 and on St Croix call 692-4263

The work of ten Charlotte Amalie High School (CAHS) Advanced Placement Art students is featured in a special exhibit now  at Scotiabank’s Havensight branch.  Entitled, Back In The Day, the exhibit will hang from now through June 10th. The show is a culmination of a semester-long project fostered by the St. Thomas Historical Trust and directed by Susan Edwards, chairman of the art department at CAHS. The bank exhibit is open from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm Monday through Thursday and 8:30 am through 5:00 pm on Fridays.  

This is Small business Week in the Virgin Islands - Friday on St Croix at the Renaissance St Croix Carambola Beach Resort the program is Women helping Women at 7:30 AM  to 7:00 PM.  And on St. Thomas on Friday the Reichhold Center for the Performing Arts is the site of the small business week awards  Guest Speaker is Dr David Hall of UVI. That's at 5:30 PM to 8:30 PM. For More Information 776-3206. And on St Croix call 692-5270.

Friday Retired Fire Fighters are meeting on Friday at 6pm at Kilo Company offices in Bournefield.

Last chance UVICELL is closing apps for the SAT Prep course.  Today.   The program is designed to improve SAT scores by lowering testing anxiety and improving test-taking skills.  The 10-week program begins Saturday, June 18.  For more information, call 693-1106.   

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