Topic, "Surface Water Improvement"

At 7PM on Wednesday 3 June, at Taste, in College Park, we'll have a fascinating discussion for you.

Water is one of the most important and fragile natural resources Orlando and Florida has. We'll learn how authorities are protecting and improving the surface water around us.

Mary Brabham, PE, will present information on the St. Johns River Water-Management District and the Middle St. Johns River Basin, descriptions of the waterbodies and watersheds of the Middle St. Johns River Basin, and the District SWIM Program that is working to improve the water quality of these waterbodies.

Mary Brabham is the Basin Program Manager for the Middle St. Johns River Basin at the SJR Water Management District. The Middle St. Johns River Basin includes Lakes Harney, Jesup, and Monroe, the Econlockhatchee and Wekiva Rivers, and the St. Johns River sections that lie between these lakes and major tributaries. The Middle Basin represents one of several priority waterbodies within the St. Johns River Basin at the SJRWMD. Mary Brabham is a registered professional engineer in the State of Florida that has been working at SJRWMD for 20 years. She has a BS in Biology from Old Dominion University in Norfolk Virginia and a masters degree from the Environmental and Civil Engineering program at the University of Central Florida.


717 W. Smith Street
Orlando, United States

Taste is near the corner of Princeton Street (really Smith Street after the fork) and Edgewater Drive, so about 2 minutes from I-4 to parking. One can park on the street or in the parking lot behind Taste.

From I-4, drive a few blocks to Edgewater Drive. At the intersection, you should see a orange building ahead of you, labeled "Taste". Park on the street or behind Taste.

FCAT science scores released

Florida students take a standard test to assess their progress in learning what's required by the state. Test results are divided into five groups, level 1 being "little success with the challenging content of the Sunshine State Standards" up to level 5, "success with the most challenging content of the Sunshine State Standards." Levels 4 and 5 are roughly good passing grades. Levels 1 and 2 are roughly failing grades.

A few days ago, the state released the most recent results, and in science the results are dismal. For fifth grade, year 2009, the levels' spread are, 1st:21%, 2nd:32%, 3rd:34%, 4th:10%, 5th:2% . The means 53% of fifth graders are somewhere between "limited", and "little success" with science topics. Only 12% perform well.

For 11th graders of last year to this year, students making the lowest 1 and 2 levels grew in ratio by one percent, from 62% to 63% having "limited" or "little" success in the sciences.