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Author Archives: Doug

Jack Rhoden, 55, dies in Tennessee

Jack Rhoden, 55, died on March 29, 2013 after a lengthy illness at his cabin home in Del Rio, Tennessee in his beloved Smoky Mountains. He was a Baker County native and the son of the late Dorothy M. Rhoden and the late Fletcher Rhoden of Macclenny.

He is survived by daughter Brandi Brown and son Jack Brady (Brad) Rhoden Jr., both of Macclenny; granddaughter Sydney Brown; grandsons Derek Brown and Mason Rhoden; the love of his life and fiancée Vicki Watson of Baldwin; sister Kimberly Lindsey (John) of Branford; brothers Jamie Rhoden (Jane) of Macclenny and Steve Rhoden (Sandra) of Houston Texas; nieces Krystal Rhoden of Macclenny, Stephanie Wilson (Todd) of Biloxi, Mississippi, Candace Naughton (Tim) of Branford;  nephews Christopher Rhoden (Kristin) of Little Rock, Arkansas, Tyler Rhoden (Nicole) of Nashville, Tennessee and Aaron Lindsey (Arika) of Tallahassee.

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Wildcat baseball secures top seed in district

Jacob Milton gets a hit during the Wildcats win over Fernandina at Suns stadium in Jacksonville.The Baker High varsity baseball team went 2-0 the past week to improve to 13-1, and locked up the number one seed in the district tournament in the process.

On March 19 the Wildcats beat the visiting Fernandina Beach Pirates 2-1. Freshmen Dylan Hall picked up the win, throwing 3.2 innings and giving up only one run. Jacob Milton pitched 2.1 scoreless innings in relief and Hunter Hanks picked up the save with a scoreless seventh inning.

Jared Crews led the offense with a pair of hits and Ethan Wilkerson added an RBI double.

“We didn’t swing the bats very well that night; maybe we were looking ahead to Friday’s game,” said Coach Fred Matricardi.

On March 22 the Cats hosted Bishop Kenny to determine the number one seed in the district tournament and handled the Crusaders 8-2 in what Matricardi called “our best game of the season.”

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A perfect marriage: the letters Q & U

Students at the PreK-Kindergarten Center recently conducted a marriage of sorts in which kindergarteners Isabella Gray posed as the letter “Q” and Connor Miner as the letter “U.”

Other students from the classes of kindergarten teachers Cori Wilkes and Jenna Smith served as the choir and all the other letters of the alphabet during the ceremony.

“It keeps it fresh in their minds that ‘Q’ and ‘U’ are always together in the English language and they make a unique sound,” said Ms. Wilkes, a second-year teacher.

Opting out of FCAT is doable, but district discourages it

With last month’s FCAT writing test finished, students and teachers are now prepping for the reading, math and science exams in April. Spring break next week will be a welcome reprieve for parent Kathrine Tidwell, who says her child gets stressed and moody when testing time rolls around.

“The best part is the hives,” she said on The Press’ Facebook page recently. “They emphasize this test way to much!” Another Facebook user, Rebecca Scribner, said her son usually comes home exhausted with a headache after standardized testing.

Angela Callahan teaches second grade at Westside Elementary and leads the local teachers union. She said high stakes testing, while entrenched in public education, takes a toll on teachers, too.

“My son worries about it for sure,” she said. “He is a wonderful student and makes excellent grades, so he has no reason to worry, but he still does.

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