HDSB staff and representatives from the Holmes County Health Department and Holmes County Sheriff's Department were recognized at this morning's school board meeting for their assistance in setting up and staffing shelters during Hurricane Irma. We are thankful to be a part of a community that comes together during times of crisis!

October is Blindness Awareness Month. Approximately 180 million people worldwide suffer from blindness or some form of visual impairment. The Florida Division of Blind Services (DBS) is honoring this observance with the release of its See Different public service announcement (PSA).


The See Different initiative showcases how individuals with visual disabilities, like their sighted peers, possess qualities and capabilities to contribute to and succeed in the classroom, workforce and their communities. This past year, DBS hosted several interactive presentations at K-12 schools, universities and businesses. During these sessions, the See Different team demonstrated how people with visual impairments participate in daily living activities. The activities within these forums included personal testimonials, success stories and simulated experiences (i.e., activities with a blindfold or vision simulator).


The DBS Communications team has created the following PSA in an effort to effectively change perceptions on a wide scale and communicate values in a message that will move citizens to think and act differently. The goal is to have everyone to see individuals with visual disabilities – like everyone else – and recognize the benefits of the full inclusion for this segment of our society. By seeing this value, people will be motivated to act upon their changed perceptions. The individuals featured in the video are all current or former DBS clients.


We hope you enjoy!


See Different: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4i2Oi0BaK_M&feature=youtu.be

See Different (with audio descriptions): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ENZlh86DsI&feature=youtu.be

The first two weeks of October are Disability History and Awareness Weeks! Section 1003.4205, Florida Statutes, entitled Disability History and Awareness Instruction, was signed into law in 2008. It requires school districts to designate the first two weeks of October as Disability History and Awareness Weeks and also promotes providing instruction for students in all public schools to expand student knowledge, understanding, and awareness of individuals with disabilities, disability history, and the disability rights movement.  For more information and resources, go to the BEESS Disability History and Awareness website at http://www.fldoe.org/ese/history.asp and the Panhandle Educational Consortium website at www.paec.org/disabilityhistoryawareness

Members of the Holmes County High varsity football team visited Mrs. Heather Rich's fourth grade classroom at Bonifay K-8 today.  The players talked with the children about the importance of good grades and good behavior.  The students really enjoyed the visit!

Due to scheduling conflicts next week, the September 19th Board Meeting has been cancelled.  The next board workshop and meeting will be held October 3. (Workshop at 5:00 p.m. and Regular Session at 6:00 p.m.).

UPDATE (Sunday, September 10, 8:45 a.m.)

Holmes County Schools will be closed on Monday AND Tuesday.  At this time there are many unknowns associated with this storm, and the decision to close on Tuesday was made out of an abundance of caution.

UPDATE (Thursday, September 7, 8:30 p.m.)

Governor Rick Scott has directed all public schools to close on Friday, September 8 and Monday, September 11 due to Hurricane Irma. We encourage everyone to stay tuned to local news media for updated weather information and to make the necessary preparations in order to stay safe during this dangerous storm.


While it is too early to determine Hurricane Irma's exact path, it's never too early to start begin preparing for a portential weather event.  Below are resources you may find helpful.

National Hurricane Center (Tracking Information) http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/#Irma

State of Florida Hurricane Preparedness Guide http://www.stateofflorida.com/articles/hurricane-preparedness-guide.aspx

Another part of your hurricane preparedness checklist should include downloading the office HDSB mobile app.  The app is free and is available on the App Store (Apple devices) and the Google Play Store (Android devices).  Information regarding possible school closures and road conditions will be updated on the app and this web page.

There will be no school on Monday, September 4 in observance of Labor Day.  Classes will resume on Tuesday, September 5.