Night of Excellence honors schools finest

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By Lou Elliott Jones, Editor

As school starts to s-l-o-w-l-y wind to a close, awards, scholarships and honors start coming students way.


But the first academic awards were bestowed at the "Night of Excellence" hosted by the Levy County Schools Foundation and the Levy County School Board at Bronson Elementary School on the evening of April 22.

As the stars were just starting to come out, the Foundation and Board presented the school and district's sparkling stars — Volunteers of the Year, Bus Driver of the Year, Education Support Person and Teacher of the Year — with compliments and awards.

Students in Williston High School's Agriculture Department did tabletop arrangements in each school's colors so administrators, teachers and personnel could find their seats. Bronson's personnel sat at tables adorned with blue and peach flowers, Chiefland's personnel gathered at tables with cream, golden and blue flowers and Williston personnel had red and white flowering bouquets. The arrangments were also a fund raiser for the department, selling for $8 each after the event.

The awards presentation was modeled after a Hollywood show with entertainment and snappy comments between the sets emceed by Chiefland High School Student Government Association leaders Kayli Bowen and Clay Allen.  Middle school student Quin Johnson got the evening off to a good start leading the guests in the Pledge of Allegiance and singing the "Star Spangled Banner."

Each winner was presented with a black messenger bag embroidered with their award and name, that was also loaded with gifts, and a plaque or trophy.

Superintendent Bob Hastings started off the presentations with an apology of sorts. Noting that every time he lists names of people who contribute, someone inevitably gets left out and he must apologize saying it was not planned. "So if I leave somebody off, it was planned on my part," Hastings said to a roar of laughter from the audience.

After student Travis Wain of Chiefland performed a dance with intricate moves,  Foundation President Bob Williams was left stunned.  "I only wish I could move like that," Williams said.

The awards program was sponsored by ABC Kindergarten and Learning Center,;Capital City Bank, Suncoast Credit Union. Also contributing were Levy County Commission Chair Nancy Bell and Commissioner Chad Johnson, Jenkins Painting and Walmart of Chiefland.