Does your teacher need an office makeover?

Posted on 16 September 2020 by JLusk

BrightStar Credit Union is giving away a home office makeover to one lucky teacher. They have launched a contest to reward one deserving Broward County teacher (or displaced entrepreneur) affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, who needs a new or revamped workspace in their home. The grand prize winner will receive a makeover valued at $5,000, designed by celebrity interior designer Marianna Dubinsky of Nouvelle Home. Four runners-up will also receive a “financial wellness check-up,” a complimentary meeting with a financial expert from BrightStar to discuss any financial questions they may have.

To enter, participants need to share a short 30 to 60-second video explaining why they think they, or a teacher or entrepreneur they are nominating, should receive a home office makeover. Entrants must be based in Broward County and at least 21 years old to enter and win. All videos need to be submitted via BrightStar’s website at  

Entrants will also need to:

  • Follow @brightstarcu on Instagram
  • Post the video onto their own Instagram page
  • Tag @brightstarcu 
  • Use #BSCUofficemakeover
Submissions will be accepted between September 15, 2020, and October 31, 2020. All entries will be judged by BrightStar Credit Union who will judge entries based on the following criteria: the most cluttered area; the least amount of workable space; the most difficult set up; and the most need for an organizational system. The grand prize winner and four runner-ups will be announced by November 15, 2020.
“This is BrightStar Credit Union’s way of saying thank you to our local community,” said Dustin Jacobs, VP of Marketing at BrightStar Credit Union and Board Member of Broward Education Foundation. “Through this giveaway, we hope to continue aiding Florida teachers and entrepreneurs in our communities so they can worry less when educating or becoming tomorrow’s leaders.”
For more information on how to participate in this giveaway, please visit or follow BrightStar Credit Union on Instagram.


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Coping with Back to School, Superintendent announces opening

Posted on 16 September 2020 by JLusk

Waverly does Back to School in style.

By Rachel Galvin

COVID-19 has caused a lot of changes in our daily lives, one of them is in the school system. The Observer had the chance to speak to a few people affected by these changes to get their opinions on how it is going this year.

“The first day of virtual school at Deerfield Beach Middle School (DBMS) exceeded my expectations,” said one parent, Lisa Cornell Davis. “Communications from Superintendent Runcie and principal Dr. Fulton have been informative, detailed and helpful. It was smooth sailing thanks to the leadership. One of our initial fears was lack of social interaction with a 100% online experience, but each teacher did a wonderful job encouraging engagement using Teams Video Conferencing while introducing icebreakers to get to know everyone on a personal level.  The teachers, students and leadership are resilient, creative and flexible. They are history in the making. They care about our health and safety.  They are pioneers in education … and it’s not only working, it’s working well!”

Avery is all smiles on the first day.

Michelle Olson-Rogers, whose daughter attends Grandview Prep, a private school in Boca Raton, where they are back to having in person classes, said, “I think every family’s decision to go back to school is extremely personal. There is no right one during a pandemic. However, as a parent, you know in your gut what is best for your child. It is up to God and good hygiene to keep us safe this year! We personally decided to go back to school in person because our school has created small cohort environments where we feel extremely safe.” 

Jack can’t wait for Kindergarten.

Joanie Cox-Henry, whose son, Jack, is in Kindergarten this year, said, We did distance learning for pre-k 4 once the school closed due to the pandemic. St. Joan of Arc Catholic School (in Boca Raton) and its teachers and staff did an outstanding job bringing the curriculum online. We had math, reading, art, science, religious education and even PE online. My son, however, really struggled with the isolation of not being in a classroom setting. He deeply missed the in-person connection of learning and he, of course, missed seeing his classmates and teachers at school each day. As a parent, I struggled with juggling home life and school life all in our living room. Daily life became more chaotic, especially with a 2-year-old child home as well.”

Emily looks happy to start the school year.

Sam is ready to get to work.









Virtual school at A.D. Henderson University School (in Boca Raton) has gone remarkably smooth,” said Leslie Moore. “My 7th grader and 2nd grader spend most of their school day on video conferences with their teachers at opposite sides of the house. The video conferences can get loud. Emily also video conferences with the P.E., Media and STEAM teachers weekly. She also has designated break times each day for physical movement, reading, recess and lunch. I’m close by to help with technical issues which can get frustrating at times. Her teacher has been amazing. My 7th grader has eight subjects spread over two days taught through 90 min. video meetings. She talks a lot about her electives: art, robotics and chorus. She seems to have easily transitioned to online learning though I know she wants to be with her friends. We picked up computers and course materials from the school over the summer an, other than a few technical issues, this process has been fairly easy.”

Sophia is ready for 8th grade.

Tinka Ellington-Hooper’s daughter Sophia attends Saint Andrew’s School in Boca. She said about working from home, “Everyone at school has worked really hard to implement virtual schooling effectively. The new school year has been going very well. It’s different of course but also has it’s positive aspects. Through virtual schooling, we are doing what needs to be done right now to keep everyone safe and still have the kids receive a quality education.”

On Sept. 15, Superintendent Runcie announced that he is planning on reopening schools on Oct. 5 with certain procedures, like mask wearing, in place and certain things like science labs not being open, and homework turned in electronically. For info. on how things will be reopened, visit

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Pedestrian Dies After Hit & Run

Posted on 09 September 2020 by JLusk

Broward Sheriff’s Office (BSO) traffic homicide detectives are searching for multiple drivers involved in a hit-and-run that left a pedestrian dead early Sunday morning. 
At around 5:45 a.m. Sept. 6, Alan Warren was traveling southbound in a white 2008 Ford Escape, in the inside thru lane of South Cypress Road in Pompano Beach, when he struck a pedestrian walking westbound. The pedestrian was crossing South Cypress Road in an area not designated for pedestrian crossing. Following the impact, Warren came to a complete stop in the area of Southwest Fifth Court and, while on foot, approached the pedestrian who was lying on the ground. 
After a brief conversation with the pedestrian, Warren attempted to locate an address on a nearby building to provide to authorities. While doing so with his back turned, the pedestrian was struck multiple times by three unknown vehicles traveling southbound on South Cypress Road. 
Pompano Beach Fire Rescue was dispatched and the pedestrian was pronounced deceased on scene. 
Warren remained at the crash site and was cooperative with investigators. The other vehicles failed to remain on scene to render aid and/or provide information to law enforcement officers as required by law. Witness statements indicate that at least one of the vehicles turned around to see what they hit, but then continued northbound. It is unknown at this time which vehicle caused the pedestrian’s fatal injuries.
According to investigators, at the time of the crash there was poor roadway visibility, as it was dark and raining. Evidence and witness statements suggest excessive speed was not a factor in this crash. The investigation continues. 
Anyone with information regarding this case is being asked to contact BSO Traffic Homicide Detective Sean Williams at 954-321-4840. If you wish to remain anonymous, contact Broward Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS (8477) or online at

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DB Special Commission Mtg.-Sept. 14

Posted on 09 September 2020 by JLusk

A Special City Commission meeting will be held on Monday, September 14 at 6 p.m. in the City Commission Chambers located at the City Hall Complex, 150 NE 2 Avenue, Deerfield Beach, via Zoom.
The purpose of the Special City Commission Meeting is to conduct public hearings regarding consideration of re-imposing fire rescue special assessments for the provision of fire rescue services as well as nuisance abatement services assessments on the 2020 tax roll; adopting the non-ad valorem assessment roll. 
Those individuals wishing to attend physically are required to adhere to a temperature check, wear facial coverings and maintain social distancing. A copy of the agenda(s) for the  meeting(s) will be available at
There are several options available to the public to view the meeting from home:
Via Zoom- Access to the meeting will begin at 5:45 p.m. Use the following link below to access the meeting:
(The video camera display feature is disabled for public use). Join the meeting via telephone (audio only) using the Call-in number below, followed by the Meeting ID when prompted. No computer or access code is required. Call-in Number: 301-715-8592, Meeting ID: 870 0441 7931#, Participant ID: #, Password: 804669#
For more information on using Zoom, please visit Zoom Support at the following link: .
The meeting will also be available to the public via YouTube for audio and video access; however, public participation, i.e. comments are not possible. The link to watch the meeting via YouTube will be active no later than 5:45 p.m. and can be found by clicking the camera icon in the Media column at .
Public participation is strongly encouraged. Your comments will be limited to three minutes per person. To participate, please choose the option best for you and remember to include your name and address for the record.
Public comments and documents may be submitted via email to  Public comments will be read aloud during the meeting and added to the record. Emails can be submitted prior to the meeting or until the public hearing session is closed. If attending via Zoom online, at the appropriate public comment period, click “raise hand” on the bottom of the “participants” tab, and your audio will be unmuted when you are recognized. If attending via Zoom by telephone, at the appropriate public comment period, press *9 to “raise your hand” and your audio will be unmuted when you are recognized.
Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact the City Clerk’s Office at 954-480-4213. For additional information on the agenda items for the Commission meeting, please visit . 

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Sheriff Talks Shop

Posted on 05 September 2020 by Rachel Galvin

The Broward Sheriff’s Office (BSO) is joining the airwaves to discuss issues important to our community in an open and honest conversation.
The first episode of the Shop Talk with the Sheriff podcast will focus on reform efforts taking place at the Broward Sheriff’s Office and how these reforms are changing the conversation between BSO and the public we serve.
“As the national conversation continues to call for changes in policing, we need to address these concerns and how they relate to our men and women of BSO and within our own neighborhoods,” Sheriff Gregory Tony said. “It’s important now more than ever to have a public discussion about creating real accountability, policy and encouraging mutual understanding.”
BSO also launched a podcast called On the Beat in Parkland with the district command staff, community members and residents as a new way to connect, answer frequently asked questions and advise safety tips. The podcasts will feature interviews with an array of individuals including deputies, detectives, specialized units and community stakeholders.
Episodes of Shop Talk with the Sheriff and On the Beat in Parkland will be available to listen to for free on sites including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and Podbean later this month. Listen to Shop Talk with the Sheriff trailer here and listen to the first episode of On the Beat in Parkland here.
If you are interested in submitting questions or topics to discuss on an episode, please send a direct message via Facebook (@BrowardSheriffsOffice), Twitter (@browardsheriff), Instagram (@BrowardSheriffsOffice) or email the questions to

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Coconut Trimming Rescheduled

Posted on 02 September 2020 by JLusk

There will be no coconut trimming from Palm Trees along Ocean Way as was scheduled Sept. 3 & 4 in Deerfield. Instead, trimming will commence Sept. 8 and run to the next day, weather dependent. As you can imagine, this could affect parking and some sidewalks might be closed. Be aware. Trimming will take place from The Kirk Cotteell Pavilion to SE 10 St. For more information please contact 954-571-2670.

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Can’t pay your rent? Broward County may be Able to Help

Posted on 31 August 2020 by JLusk

Qualified residents impacted by COVID-19 will soon be able to apply online for rental assistance, thanks to the Broward County Commission.

Broward County has allocated $25 million in federal CARES funding for a program that will help residents pay portions of unpaid rent for the months of April, May, June, July and August 2020. Funds are not a loan, and do not have to be paid back.

Individuals may be eligible if they meet the following requirements:

  • They are a Broward County resident
  • They or someone in their household experienced a documented loss or reduction in income related to COVID-19
  • Due to the loss of income related to COVID-19, they were unable to pay their rent
  • Their landlord agrees to participate
  • Assistance equates to a partial payment of rent. For months one and two of the owed rent amount the rental assistance program will pay, and the landlord must agree to, 75% of the amount due. For months three, four and five of rent assistance , the program will pay, and the landlord must agree to, 60% of the amount due. Late fees, if any, will not be covered by the program.

Payments are made to landlords, therefore if a landlord is not willing to complete the documents, the tenant will not be eligible for assistance.

Broward County’s Family Success Division is managing the application process and will approve and distribute funds until depleted.

Application Period Opens August 31

The application period is Monday, August 31 through Sunday, September 6, 2020, from 8AM to 10PM daily. Applications may be submitted online only, at A computer is not necessary, and the application can be completed on a smartphone or tablet. No in-person applications will be accepted.

Because applicants are required to attach significant amounts of substantiating documentation, residents who believe they are qualified are encouraged to begin today to collect documentation required for the online application process. For details, visit The application must be completed in one sitting and cannot be partially completed, saved or returned to at a later time.

Examples of the types of documents that may be required depending upon each unique situation are:

  • Copy of valid government-issued ID
  • Rental lease agreement or Tenant Verification Form, completed by landlord
  • Late notice for past due rent/eviction notice/past due notification
  • Evidence of unemployment or loss of income if self-employed
    Once a resident’s application is assigned a case manager, he or she may be asked to supply other documents such as bank statements. Again, consult the website for details on documents that may be required at time of application.

“Our residents are hurting,” said Broward County Mayor Dale V.C. Holness. “This $25 million rental assistance program can provide much needed financial assistance to many, many families who need our help, and help protect landlords and small businesses who need to collect rents to pay mortgages and other expenses related to property ownership.”

COVID-19 has impacted many Broward County families in many ways. If you have loss of income not related to COVID-19, and need help during this difficult pandemic, please visit our Family Success Division website to see what other resources may be available to you.

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As Broward County Readies to Enter Phase 2, Fines are Increased for not Wearing a Mask

Posted on 31 August 2020 by JLusk

Broward County is trying to make sure numbers stay low, especially with the anticipation of an increase in activity over the Labor Day weekend, by increasing fines on those who do not wear masks. The county has estavlished a $100 fine but people could face a fine up to $1000.

The county has given out more thean 1680 warnings and citations since March 1. They say that as a result, the number of cases, etc. has declined. They hope that upping the fee will keep the numbers headed in a downward direction.

“Every member of the community has a role to play in protecting us from the virus,” said County Administrator Bertha Henry. “The wearing of facial coverings while in public places is a proven way to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and increase the overall health of our community. We want everybody who lives in or decides to visit Broward County during this pandemic to know that we are a ‘mask community.’”

Municipal code enforcement authorities may establish their own fines for violations of the facial covering requirements; but are encouraged to follow Broward County’s lead to reduce confusion and ensure consistency throughout the community.

The enhanced enforcement program takes effect immediately.

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Dist. 1 Office Hours–Sep. 12

Posted on 31 August 2020 by JLusk

District One Commissioner Michael Hudak is happy to host Saturday office hours via teleconference, Saturday, Sept. 12 from 10 a.m. to noon. To schedule an appointment please contact the City Manager’s Office at 954-480-4263 or .

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Testing Extended–Deerfield

Posted on 31 August 2020 by JLusk

The City of Deerfield Beach’s and Florida Department of Health’s COVID-19 Testing Site at Oveta McKeithen Recreation Complex located at 445 SW 2 Street, Deerfield Beach, will extend its operations through Wednesday , Sept. 30.      
The walkup collection site hours are Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. No appointments necessary. 
The Testing Site will be closed on Monday, Sept. 7, in observance of Labor Day.  
For additional information, contact the Florida Department of Health at 954-412-7300 or .

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