HORIZON WEST Just west of the maligned Reams Road roundabout on Silverlake Park Drive will be an elementary school relieving Sunset Park and Independence elementary schools, starting in August 2016.
At its April 12 meeting – after a lengthy community survey process – the Orange County School Board decided on Bay Lake Elementary as that school's name.
“We follow a board policy on the naming of new schools,” said Harold Border, area superintendent for the Orange County Public Schools Southwest Learning Community. “Originally, everyone was given an opportunity to provide input on the names; 98 surveys returned with name suggestions. The top three for that were Bay Lake Elementary, Silverlake Elementary and Horizon Elementary.”
OCPS staff collected surveys from Feb. 21 to 29, via a link on the websites of Sunset Park and Independence, paper copies at those schools for families in that zone and a Feb. 25 reminder from those schools' prinicpals, Border said. On March 2, staff reviewed the submissions and then put the top three to a vote: Bay Lake, just south on Reams Road in Walt Disney World; Silverlake, for the name of the street; and Horizon, for Horizon West.
“Again, everyone had an opportunity to … vote on that,” Border said. “The parents voted 45% in favor of Bay Lake, 16% Horizon and 39% Silverlake. Students voted 57% Silverlake, 23% Bay Lake and 20% Horizon.”
Although Silverlake thus appeared to be most popular, the board discussed the history of Bay Lake and potential confusion from already having Lake Silver Elementary in Orlando, Border said. This ultimately led to choosing Bay Lake Elementary.
Other votes within this community survey process were for the school's colors and mascot, which Bay Lake Elementary's principal, Myrlene Kimble, announced as green and white and the Lions.
“She was most recently principal at Catalina Elementary School and, prior to that, Endeavor Elementary School,” Border said. “She's been with the district (about) 20 years.”
Border said some parents already had met Kimble, who also announced she would be available for parents and students to meet at Sunset Park Elementary's Food Truck Night, 6 p.m. May 20. She said kindergarten registration and orientation would be from 9 to 10 a.m. May 10 and 9 to 11 a.m. May 11 and 12 at Sunset Park Elementary.
Contact Zak Kerr at [email protected].