Seeking a sensory room to serve students with autism

Dan Reyes has often witnessed the benefits of a sensory environment for his 13-year-old son, Jacob, who has autism. Each Sunday, his family attends LifePoint Church in New Tampa, which has a sensory room devoted to children with special needs. “He absolutely loves going into that room,” Reyes said. “He’s happy in there. He’s active, and it’s a very engaging room when sometimes other … [Read more...]

Mr. Bolt was a true ‘staple’ at Wesley Chapel Elementary

Wesley Chapel Elementary School held an open house on March 16 to celebrate the life of Dan Bolt, a 44-year-old behavioral specialist who died suddenly on March 12. Mr. Bolt, as he was known at the elementary school, joined its staff in 2003 as a music teacher. He remained in that role until this school year, when he became a behavioral specialist. Wesley Chapel Elementary Principal Stan … [Read more...]

Pulte to build 350 homes in Wesley Chapel

Pulte Group’s West Florida Division plans to build 350 single-family residences on the south side of Wells Road, east of Boyette Road, according to a news release from BoardroomPR. The development will be a Centex-brand community, known as Wesbridge. Pulte recently purchased about 104 acres for the project. Wesbridge will be targeted to first-time homebuyers, with sales prices … [Read more...]

Pasco students share their special talents

The ovations and cheers seemed endless. The smiles, too. Special needs students from four Pasco County schools shared their unique skills on Oct. 20 before more than 100 parents, peers, school faculty and community members. The ninth annual Showcase for Exceptional Talent was in the auditorium at the Center for the Arts at Wesley Chapel. The event allows all of the special needs … [Read more...]

Gearing up for Cypress Creek Middle School

A new middle school is expected to open next to Cypress Creek Middle High School, allowing the existing school to focus on high school only. The new middle school will accommodate 1,675 students on a 15-acre site, just north of the current school, which opened in August at 8701 Old Pasco Road, for students in grades six through 11. The estimated construction budget is $43.5 … [Read more...]

Changes afoot, as school bells ring in a new year

School bells are summoning students back to classes in Hillsborough and Pasco counties — and some students will be attending classes on entirely new campuses. Sunlake Academy of Math and Science, a new public charter school in Hillsborough County, begins its inaugural school year on Aug. 10. It is located at 18681 N. Dale Mabry Highway in Lutz. Meanwhile, Pasco County is opening Bexley … [Read more...]

School construction needs outpace funding

The Pasco County School Board has begun exploring the idea of asking voters to support a half-penny sales tax to help pay for school construction. During a June 20 workshop on the district’s capital needs, School Board member Cynthia Armstrong asked staff to come back with a projection of how much the half-penny tax would generate in 10 years and a list detailing the types of projects the tax … [Read more...]

Pasco students showcase their talents

The talent was endless. The applause was, too. Special needs students from seven Pasco County schools displayed their unique skills on May 17 before more than 100 parents, peers and school faculty. The eighth annual Showcase for Exceptional Talent was held at the Wesley Chapel High School Center for the Arts auditorium. From dancing and singing/duets, to lip-syncing and comedy … [Read more...]

Cypress Creek football presents ‘great opportunity’

In less than three weeks, a new high school football program will take the field in Wesley Chapel. Like other Florida high schools, the Cypress Creek Coyotes are set to begin spring football practices on April 24. But, the circumstances for this team are unique — particularly for new head coach Mike Johnson and prospective athletes. The program faces logistical hurdles because Cypress … [Read more...]

Boundaries approved for new schools

The Pasco County School Board has approved boundaries for the new Cypress Creek Middle/High School, despite considerable controversy. The board also adopted boundaries for Bexley Elementary School, without any opposition from the public. Cypress Creek Middle/High School, being built off Old Pasco Road, is scheduled to open in fall 2017. Initially, it will be for students in grades six … [Read more...]