New and renovated schools planned

The Pasco County School Board received an overview last week on projects planned to construct, renovate, expand and repair schools across the district. They also heard a wrap-up on projects in progress or finished this year. The presentation, by Chris Williams, director of planning services and Olga Swinson, chief finance officer, came as the district prepares to vote on a final capital … [Read more...]

Grades slip at numerous local schools

The Florida Department of Education has released its annual school grades, and the news was not good for numerous Pasco County schools in The Laker/Lutz News’ coverage area. “As soon as I saw the information, I was pretty distraught,” said Pasco County School Board member Alison Crumbley. “This has to really be broken down,” she said, noting she has requested a school board workshop to … [Read more...]

Zephyrhills man turns trash into art

From crafting hand drawings to designing T-shirts, Steven Spittka loves art. The 51-year-old Zephyrhills resident and Navy veteran still recalls getting “straight A’s” in his high school art classes in Michigan. Having that creative mindset sparked the idea that he could make art sculptures “out of trash” — about five years ago, when he saw empty cans littering the yard near the … [Read more...]

Pasco expands magnet options

Pasco County Schools is expanding its magnet school options beginning next school year, and is holding a series of community meetings to explain the additional options. The district is converting Centennial Middle School, in Dade City, into a STEM Magnet School. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. A series of community meetings, with each beginning at 6 … [Read more...]

Pasco schools planning more construction projects

As Pasco County Schools gears up to open an elementary school in Wesley Chapel next school year, it’s also planning to open a school for students in grades six through 12 in Wesley Chapel and an elementary school in Land O’ Lakes in the fall of 2017. It’s also planning to open a kindergarten through eighth-grade school in Starkey Ranch, though no opening date has been yet specified, said Chris … [Read more...]

Enrollment growth in Pasco highest since recession

Drive through Pasco County and it’s easy to see the signs of growth. New houses are popping up in subdivisions. New apartment complexes are being built, and land is being cleared for more development. And now that school is back in session, some of that growth is beginning to show up in classrooms, too. For the first time since 2007, the enrollment figures for the first day of school … [Read more...]

Pasco Schools’ five-year building plan gets OK

When Sanders Memorial Elementary School reopens in 2015-16, the Land O’ Lakes campus will have an entirely new look. It’s undergoing a $16.9 million renovation. Quail Hollow Elementary School in Wesley Chapel is undergoing a $10.5 million makeover. It, too, is expected to reopen in 2015-16. Work already is underway on a new gymnasium at Stewart Middle School in Zephyrhills. That $4.6 … [Read more...]