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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida • Page 17
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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida • Page 17

West Palm Beach, Florida
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THE PALM BEACH POST TUESDAY, MARCH 7. 2006 3B igh school arts requirements facing erasure At issue is whether schools will continue the programs if they become optional. ment he said, "You might miss the opportunity to get them hooked on school." Palm Beach County School Board members have said recently that arts education is essential to creating well-rounded students. Board member Debra Robinson said studies have shown that arts helps students learn other subjects, such as math. "I don't have an artsy bone in my body.

I'd rather do math," she said. "But I think we should broaden the horizons of our young people. I don't want to whittle away at the arts education more than we already have." rani juptapbpostcom chancellor. "No student is being prohibited from taking arts classes if they wish," she said. "Under the new proposal, students could have a major in the arts, a minor in the arts or take an elective in the arts.

So it actually gives you more choices." But Tom Pearson, the arts administrator for the Palm Beach County School District, is concerned that that while some schools would continue to offer arts programs, others would not "At other schools, if it's not required, these programs will disappear," he said. "It will amount to an equity issue of the haves and the have-nots. Parents of means will al ways be able to provide arts and music to their kids, where lower socioeconomic parents will not" Pearson and other arts educators plan to speak at a meeting of a state House education committee, which will consider the bill Evan Rogovin, a music teacher and band director at Santaluces High School, said he knows of some students who took a music class only because of the requirement then grew to love it An activity such as band can prevent dropouts by giving students an incentive to come to class, Rogovin said. By eliminating that require The proposed graduation requirements, which are subject to legislative approval, are part of Gov. Jeb Bush's A-Plus-Plus education plan and follow the recommendations of the state's high school reform task force.

The plan no longer would require that students take one year of arts classes, which can include fine arts such as music, drama, dance and visual arts, or vocational subjects, such as drafting. But high school students would have to choose a major, and they could select arts as either a major or a minor. The intent is not to eliminate arts education, said Cheri Pierson Yecke, the state's K-12 education By RANI GUPTA Palm Beach Post Staff Writer Proposed changes to the state's graduation standards soon could mean the end of required arts education in Florida high schools. That worries educators who fear that classes such as music and drama are falling by the wayside as schools become increasingly focused on subjects in the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test Mom gets 5 years for leaving her baby in hot car The girl's temperature reached 106.3 degrees before she died. was a fitting end to the case because of Wildman's "reckless conduct" the night before.

Wildman told police that she smoked pot, drank alcohol, took Xanax and used cocaine. was exceptionally outrageous staying out all nightlong, dragging the child around with her while using this narcotic cocktail," McKamey said after the hearing. Wildman's defenders, though, point to the fact that toxicology tests only found remnants of cocaine in her system. Defense attorney AJ. Amoroso said he believes Wildman had her days mixed up when she spoke to police and incriminated herself even more.

Amoroso said he tried to place Wildman's case in the same category as that of others who have left their children in hot cars that resulted in the children dying. A Boca Raton dentist and Wellington grandfather received probation after their guilty pleas. "The fact that she's going to prison is, to a certain extent because of her speaking to them so honestly," Amoroso said. That's the irony of it all" By SUSAN SPENCER-WENDEL Palm Beach Post Staff Writer WEST PALM BEACH A woman who passed out in her car, leaving her infant daughter to overheat and die, will serve five years in prison for the crime, according to a plea agreement reached in court Monday. Melisa Wildman pleaded guilty to aggravated manslaughter of a child for the death of her 4-month-old strawberry-blond baby, Savanna.

Wildman passed out, leaving the girl roasting in a car in April 2004. The baby's temperature reached 106.3 degrees. Wildman, 30, of Lake Worth will serve the five years in prison, followed by 15 years of intense probation for drug offenders, under the terms of the plea agreement A judge denied her request for a weeklong furlough and sent her on to prison Monday. Assistant State Attorney Patrick McKamey said prison UMA SANGHVIStalT Photographer Melisa Wildman of Lake Worth speaks with her attorney, A J. Amoroso, before Monday's sentencing.

She pleaded guilty in a plea agreement in, he said. "She was raising her like she was her own child," Am; A Palm Beach County sheriffs deputy let Wildman drive away with the baby after passersby discovered her passed out in the car and paramedics had to revive her. The deputy let her go despite misdemeanor arrest per, sitting there facing the Amoroso said he believes Wildman thinks about Savanna each and every day. She recently had been helping her parents raise a young niece they had to take warrants and a suspended license. Amoroso said there could have been a lot of finger-pointing if the case went to trial.

But in the end, it would be just Wildman, a former strip oroso said. WPEONews 12 contributed to this story. susanspencerwendelpbposLcom V4 'JW IIW'HW Man carjacld 'Vanishing' in work Cadillac at Boca Publix dblDri j. vanishin act The robber told the 86-year-old driver he was suicidal and desperate for money. The statue is one of 80 U.S.

Trust Wild Things works intended to help the Boys Girls Qub raise money. By STEPHANIE SLATER Palm Beach Post Staff Writer The 7-foot-tall dolphin statue was removed from its 300-pound concrete base sometime late Saturday evening or early Sunday morning in front of the Palm Beach Gastroenterology Consultants on State Road 7, the sheriff's office says. The smaller bronze dolphin, intentionally made detachable, was kept inside after hours and wasn't stolen. Ptioto courtesy Boys Gilts Club of Palm Beach County BOCA RATON A Saturday after: By NICOLE JAN0K Palm Beach Post Staff Writer "7 r. The sleek blue statue was meant to call attention to the slowly dwindling dolphin 1 population and raise money for local children, i But the nearly life-size fiberglass dolphin statue named Vanishing, has done just that vanished.

The 7-foot-tall creation was removed from its 300-pound concrete base sometime late Saturday evening or early Sunday morning in 'front of the Palm Beach Gastroenterology Consultants on State Road 7, according to a Palm Beach County Sheriffs Office report The statue, created by local artist Norman Gitzen, who is known for Wellington's infamous Siren, was one of 80 U.S. Trust Wild Things works sprinkled around the county. The statues are expected to raise $500,000 for the Boys Girls Club of Palm Beach County at auction next month, said Rozanne Sonne-i born, the club's director of development Gitzen's statue was considered the most valuable in the collection. "We just hope that the animal shows up," Sonneborn said. This is a huge fund-raiser for us." Two years ago, in a similar program called Gators Galore, Gitzen's gator sold for a record $18,000, Sonneborn said.

That year, three gator statues were stolen, Two gators have been returned, but one re-j mains missing, she said. noon trip to Publix turned into a night mare for an 86-year-old woman when stranger got into her car, demanded money and forced her to drive, police, said. About 3:30 just moments aftef the woman got into her car at 4141 Nj Federal Highway, a man opened the passenger-side door and sat down, according to a police report The man, whose breath smelled of alcohol, reportedly said he was desperate for money, suicidal and did not want to hurt her but would if he had to. When the Boca Raton woman offered him $150 cash, he said it wasn't enough and ordered her to drive to an ATM, according to the report The woman, however, did not have an ATM debit card. The carjacker directed her to an empty parking lot on Northwest 40th Street and told her to get out of the green 2005 Cadillac Deville.

He then fled with the vehicle. An hour later, the car's OnStar tracking device led police to the 400 block of East Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach, where the unoccupied Cadillac was parked. Police found the woman's purse in a nearby garbage can. Several Publix employees told police they had seen the man outside the store's entrance an hour before the carjacking, possibly waiting for a victim. He is described as white, about 5-feet-10, with an athletic build and dirty blonde hair.

He was wearing a blue T-shirt and blue jeans or shorts. Anyone with information is urged to call Detective Jeff Clare at (561) 338-1246 or Crime Stoppers of Palm Beach County at (800) 458-TTPS (8477). When Gitzen first began the Vanishing project he was concerned someone might steal a bronze baby dolphin that is part the larger piece, so he made it detachable. Each night the baby dolphin was secured inside the office, where it now remains, Pollack said. Still, Gitzen is frustrated that his hard work will not benefit the Boys Girls Club.

"I just couldn't believe someone could do that especially when it's a charity for chit dren," he said. "It's really an all-time low for thieves to steal from children." nicolejanokpbposlcom Tony Pollack, a manager at the medical office, said the building has seven cameras that are monitored by ADT Security Service Inc. They are hoping the cameras captured the incident in front of the building, he said. The statue was featured at the medical facility to recognize Dr. Krishna Tripuraneni, who donated $5,000 to underwrite the artwork The striking piece has been a popular feature since it was installed last week.

"People just come by to see that statue," Pollack said. "It caused such a reaction today" when it was gone. Police in Daytona believe same person killed three women slayings of Laquetta Gunther, Julie Green and Iwana Patton, but said they're looking for a man who anonymously reported the most recent death on Feb. 24 from a pay phone. The caller, who police are characterizing as a witness, pro vided an address that turned out to be a vacant lot Gather's body was found in an alley on Dec.

26. Green's body was discovered Jan. 14 on a dirt road at a construction site, while Patton was found on a dirt road Feb. 24. Sf The women share other con I' The Associated Press DAYTONA BEACH Investiga-; tors believe the same person or persons are responsible for three unsolved murders here since late December, police said Monday.

Daytona police wouldn't re-i lease specifier details about the nections. Green reportedly had stayed at a house where Gunther lived in Bunnell, and Gunther and Patton used the Homeless Assistance Center. Police also believe all three may have gotten into a car with someone they did not know..

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