Growth puts squeeze on schools

As Pasco County Schools heads into another school year, crowded conditions are expected on several campuses within The Laker/Lutz News coverage area. District officials are projecting that Wesley Chapel’s Wiregrass Ranch High School will operate at 141 percent of its capacity, with an estimated 2,310 students in a school designed for 1,633. Connerton Elementary School, in Land O’ Lakes, … [Read more...]

Project needs outpace funding in Pasco County Schools

As Pasco County Schools heads into a new school year, the district faces a perennial issue: There’s not enough money to cover district construction and maintenance needs. “Our current debt is about $525 million,” Chris Williams, director of planning told Pasco County School Board members during a workshop last week. Pasco’s rapid growth continues to create demand for new or expanded schools, … [Read more...]

Pasco embarks on new type of high school

The Pasco County school district is planning a new magnet high school that doesn’t fit the traditional mold. It will combine a rigorous curriculum along with technical skills training — and will seek community partnerships to give students real-world experiences, said Ray Gadd, deputy superintendent for Pasco County Schools. Coming up with a name for the school is a little bit tricky, Gadd … [Read more...]

Request raises questions about sites for schools, parks

The Pasco County Planning Commission has recommended approval of a change that would make it easier for landowners along State Road 52, near Bellamy Brothers Boulevard, to pursue development. However, planning commissioners also are recommending that any development done in the area be accompanied by a map that identifies where future sites would be located for schools and parks. The … [Read more...]

Serving up free lunches for kids this summer

School may be out — but Pasco County Schools takes part in a program that provides free lunches to hungry children. The program serves meals at various cafeterias, and at some pick-up locations, too. Megan Sexton, the food program’s coordinator, said Pasco was one of the first counties in Florida to implement mobile feeding. The idea was to provide youths with a well-rounded meal … [Read more...]

Public input sought on naming new Pasco high school

Pasco County Schools is seeking the public’s help in suggesting names for a new high school that will be focused on technology and business programs, and is set to open in August of 2022 in East Pasco. The school will be located at Curley Road and Keifer Road in Wesley Chapel on the former Kirkland Ranch property, according to a news release from the Pasco school district. Program plans for the … [Read more...]

Creating safe and compassionate schools

When you ask an open-ended question, there’s no telling what the responses will be. But that’s the point, actually, in a process that Pasco County Schools used to gather different perspectives, regarding the emotional and physical safety of district students and staff. District officials conducted a ThoughtExchange that allows participants to use technology to share their thoughts and ideas, … [Read more...]

Pasco has no plans to allow employees to carry firearms

Gov. Ron DeSantis has signed into law a measure passed by the Florida Legislature that clears the way for classroom teachers to serve as armed school guardians, but Pasco County Schools has no intention of pursuing that option, according to a district news release. The new law implements legislative recommendations of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety … [Read more...]

MPO board meeting addresses current agendas

The Pasco County Metropolitan Planning Organization board addressed three key topics during its April 11 session. Those items were: The Tampa Bay Resiliency Study Future transportation funding, through a proposed transportation surtax A requested extension on a project related to the MPO’s long-range plan John Villeneuve, director of the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), … [Read more...]

Expo encourages better money management

Offering ways to better manage money was the central theme of Pasco County Schools’ Financial Literacy Expo, held at Wesley Chapel High School. Representatives from various organizations and companies came together to inform students and adults, alike, on how to prioritize their expenses. The Wesley Chapel High session was on April 4. A previous session had been held on April 1 at Marchman … [Read more...]