Thursday, January 28, 2016

Pasco School Choice Application Period Begins Sunday

Land O’ Lakes, FL – (January 28, 2016) – Pasco County Schools’ school choice application window opens on Monday, February 1, and runs through Tuesday, March 1.

The magnet school application period, which began on January 18, ends on January 31.  Students whose names are chosen through the magnet lottery process will be notified of their acceptance into a magnet school via email on Friday, February 12.  Those who applied for a magnet school also can submit a school choice application for a traditional Pasco County school.

School choice applications can be accessed by going to the district website,, and clicking on the school choice banner at the top.
If a student currently is attending a school on school choice, parents do not need to reapply unless:

  1. Their address changed after initial approval
  2. They reside outside of Pasco County
  3. 3. Your school was impacted by boundary changes, OR
  4. The student will be moving to the next school level (for instance, elementary to middle or middle to high).

Families who live in another county and wish to request student assignment to a Pasco County school must submit a release from their home county within the open enrollment period.  Applications that have not been completed in their entirety will not be considered.  Families requesting choice enrollment for more than one child need to complete separate applications for each child.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Three Pasco District Schools Win Gold

Land O’ Lakes, FL – (January 27, 2016) – Cypress, New River and Oakstead elementary schools have earned Gold medals from Florida’s Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports Project.

A Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports: Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (PBIS:MTSS) Model School is one that has met specific criteria and has reported innovative, creative, and functional ways of supporting PBS:MTSS. Specific characteristics of PBIS:MTSS Model Schools are their consistent methods of:
(1) utilizing their data to better serve the students and staff,
(2) teaching PBIS:MTSS to new students throughout the school year,
(3) creative and engaging reward systems,
(4) extending PBS:MTSS throughout the campus and partnering with the community and parents, and
(5) including PBS:MTSS into daily activities across all available teaching opportunities.

Cypress Elementary School
Cypress Elementary focuses on catching students who are being respectful, responsible, and safe.  When students are caught being good they receive a Cub 100 ticket on which they write their names, and 20 random tickets are drawn each Friday on the morning news.  The students earn a prize and are entered into a random opportunity to participate in a mystery motivator.

The PBIS committee meets monthly to analyze behavior data and create action plans for students needing additional modeling.  Staff and peer mentors provide support and encouragement for students who are at risk based on Pasco’s Early Warning System risk indicators.  A check-in/check-out system is also in place to help at-risk students have successful days.  Cypress staff and bus drivers are also celebrated for their encouragement of students following our school wide expectations.

New River Elementary School
New River Elementary has a schoolwide matrix that supports being safe, responsible, and respectful in all areas of the school. It uses visual images for younger students and is in written form for all students, so no matter where you go on the campus everyone is able to know and support the positive behavior expectations. These school-wide expectations also transition to a school-wide reward system.  Every student can earn MALL MONEY for positive behaviors, which can be spent quarterly at the Shoppes of New River.  This shopping system is conducted by the 5th graders, who sell items they no longer want or need to younger students.  Their profits are in Mall Money and are saved in an account that is cleared at the end of the year at the 5th grade auction.

The PBIS committee meets monthly to analyze behavior data and plan for solutions for students who need additional support.  Staff and peer mentors provide support and encouragement for students who are at risk based on Pasco’s Early Warning System risk indicators.  A check-in/check-out system is also in place to help at-risk students be successful in school.

Oakstead Elementary School
Oakstead Elementary staff works to teach the expectations and rules to students explicitly and uses visual reminders throughout the school including posters with pictures to show the rules and expectations.  They also work as a whole staff, in every department, to form mentorships with students who need extra behavior support, based on data from the district’s Early Warning System indicators.  These positive relationships promote excellent progress for Oakstead students.

Florida’s PBI Model Schools Project
Florida’s Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports Project recognizes Model Schools at the Bronze, Silver, and Gold levels.  Schools may choose to apply for any level award. Each Model School will receive a certificate and recognition on Florida’s Positive Behavior Supports Project web site.  New model schools also will receive a banner to display their award status, and returning model schools will receive a sticker to add to their existing banner.

Pasco School Board Seeks Community Input on Naming Elementary “W”

Land O’ Lakes, FL – (January 27, 2016) – The District School Board of Pasco County is accepting suggestions from the community for the name of the new elementary school under construction in Wesley Chapel.  Elementary “W” is scheduled to open in August on Mansfield Boulevard, across from Dr. John Long Middle School.

School Board policy encourages community members, educators, and students to provide suggestions for school names.  The Board prefers to name schools after the general location, features of the area, or historical information about the school’s location, and the suggested name must be descriptive and brief.

If submitting the name of an individual, the name should be of a person of prominence recognized for his or her outstanding civic or educational contribution. The Board will only consider naming a school after an elected official or School Board employee if he or she has been deceased for two or more years or left public office or employment in the district two or more years ago.  The name, once adopted by the Board, is considered permanent unless the facility or its use changes.

Please submit your suggestions with a brief explanation for each school name by February 29, 2016.  Email submissions using the Subject “Elementary W” to, fax them to 813-794-2716, or mail them to:

Linda Cobbe
Communications & Government Relations Dept.
7227 Land O’ Lakes Blvd.
Land O’ Lakes, FL 34638

Friday, January 15, 2016

Application Period for New STEM Middle Magnet Schools Begins Monday

Application Period for New STEM Middle Magnet Schools Begins Monday; Sanders STEAM Elementary Magnet Application Period Began January 1

Land O’ Lakes, FL – (January 15, 2016) – The application period for Pasco County Schools’ two new STEM middle magnet schools – Bayonet Point and Centennial – begins  Monday, January 18, at 8 a.m., and runs through Sunday, January 31.  The Sanders application period also ends on January 31.

Applicants can access the application online starting at 8 a.m. on January 18, by going to the district website,, and clicking on the banner for the two STEM middle magnet schools.  Families should complete a separate application for each child, and are encouraged to double check each application to make sure it is completed fully and accurately.  Incomplete applications will not be accepted.

The STEM magnet schools will offer Science-inspired problems, Technology tools, Engineering problem-solving methodology, and Mathematics modeling and data representation. STEM education is an integrated curriculum approach in which rigorous academic concepts connect teaching and learning as students apply science, technology, engineering, and math to make real world connections.  All students at each school will be enrolled as a magnet school student, even those students who live within the school’s boundary.

Transportation will be provided as follows to students at the Bayonet Point STEM Middle Magnet School:

›  Students living within the Bayonet Point Middle School attendance zone will receive traditional transportation services at neighborhood stops.
›  Students living within the magnet boundary will receive transportation services with hub sites.

Bayonet Point STEM Middle Magnet School Hub Stops

Chasco Middle School
Crews Lake Middle School
Gulf Middle School
Hudson Middle School
Paul R. Smith Middle School
River Ridge Middle School
Seven Springs Middle School

Transportation will be provided as follows to students at the Centennial STEM Middle Magnet School:

  • Students living within the Centennial Middle School attendance zone will receive traditional transportation services at neighborhood stops.
  • Students living within the magnet boundary will receive transportation services with hub sites.

Centennial STEM Middle Magnet School Bus Stops

Dr. John Long Middle School
Pasco Middle School
Raymond B. Stewart Middle School 
Thomas E. Weightman Middle School

Student selection will be based on a randomized lottery.  Those who are selected for acceptance into a magnet school will be notified on February 12, 2016.  The offer to accept a magnet school invitation will be sent via email and families will have six business days to respond and confirm their magnet invitation.  Invitations will continue to be sent until all available magnet seats are filled.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Wesley Chapel, FL 5th Graders Named Top Ten Finalist in U.S for Scotties Tissues Contest

School Eligible to Win $10,000 in Prize Money From National Video Contest

Burlington, MA (January 11, 2016) -- Scotties, a leader in the tissue industry is pleased to announce the top 10 finalists in their annual Trees Rock® video contest. After being voted on by a panel of judges, the 5th grade Media Club students from Veterans Elementary School in Wesley Chapel, FL have emerged as a top 10 contender for the second time in three years.

The next phase of the contest will run from January 11th to February 7th in which all videos will be voted on by the public to determine the grand prize winner. The school with the most eligible votes will receive $10,000 to use towards a sustainable project, such as tree plantings, outdoor classrooms, playgrounds, athletic fields, gardens and greenhouses. All kids who entered the contest were required to create a video up to 3 minutes long on the importance of trees -- to themselves, their school, and their community.
Students were encouraged to be as creative as possible in their entries – for example, by creating a poem, a play, a speech, a song, or a dance. After rigorous scrutiny by a panel of judges, entries from around the country were narrowed down to the 10 best in 3rd – 6th grade on the categories of most compelling relative to theme, clarity of message, and creativity.

The video was led by technology specialist and Media Club coordinator, Susan Forgas. In their video, the students created a mock newscast hosted by Jack Woodchuck and Alyssa Leaf. Intermixed in between tree facts they feature highlights in sports, news and reality television. To see the full video click here.

The school hopes to use the winnings to help further their efforts in expanding their butterfly sanctuary and edible garden along with adding on a sensory garden.

"Veterans Elementary School is dedicated to creating an outdoor learning environment where all students have an opportunity to truly experience the wonders of nature," according to Mrs. Forgas. "With the prize money, we would both expand and add to our existing garden areas, as well as create informational signage about not only the plants and trees in the gardens, but also the beneficial insects that live there. The signs will teach students which plants they can see, smell, touch, or taste, and help them understand and appreciate the living ecosystem all around them. We have had a longstanding commitment to health and wellness at VES, and allowing students to taste a variety plants and trees they have grown themselves is one of the best ways we can instill in them a love of real, wholesome foods."


Students in the video leading the newscast

“Scotties takes great pride in our Trees Rock campaign,” says John Robertson, Scotties Marketing Director.  “It has helped educate and excite young people throughout the country about trees and their importance in our lives.  Plus, it has allowed students to show off their creativity through the production of their video.  We are impressed with this video and just as impressed with the school’s commitment to sustainability. This surely will make for some stiff competition in the voting period!”

Winners will be chosen by voters across America who can watch the top videos and vote for their favorite from January 11th through February 7th on  The winners in both categories will be announced on Feb 15th and winner events will be celebrated in spring 2016.

Scotties is passionate about sustainability with their 3-to-1 promise. In which for every one tree they use, they plant three in its place. Over the last 50 years, Irving Consumer Products Limited, Scotties’ parent company has planted 950 million trees in North America.

About Scotties Facial Tissue:
Considered one of the top facial tissue manufacturers in the United States, Scotties Facial Tissues is owned by Irving Consumer Products Limited, a Canadian-based and family owned company committed to managing its operations in an environmentally sustainable and socially responsible manner. Scotties has created Trees Rock in an effort to promote their tree planting initiatives in the United States. For more information about Scotties Facial Tissues and its 3-to-1 Tree Planting Promise, please visit and for more information on Trees Rock visit

Page 31 of 94 pages ‹ First  < 29 30 31 32 33 >  Last ›