Kurt S. Browning, Superintendent of Schools
May 11, 2018

Kurt S. Browning, Superintendent of Schools

May 11, 2018

Kurt S. Browning, Superintendent of Schools

May 11, 2018

Kurt S. Browning, Superintendent of Schools

May 11, 2018

Superintendent's Message

On May 2 and 7, we held two school safety town hall meetings.  I was surprised that more people didn’t turn out, but those who did attend had good questions and suggestions.  We also heard at both meetings concerns from parents about the security of their children’s schools.  I know many schools are diligent about keeping doors and gates locked, and checking in every visitor, but we still have some work to do.  It is my expectation that every classroom door remains locked while students are in class.  If a student has to leave during class, the door should be locked behind him or her.  I know it’s not convenient, but we are going to have to suffer some inconvenience if we want to be prepared to deter intruders.  The same is true for locking gates.  I know that schools have deliveries throughout the day, but we cannot make it easy for people with ill intent to access our schools for the sake of convenience.  Gates must remain locked.  It’s also important that every visitor, and even school district staff, is entered into Raptor when they are on campus, and checked out when they leave.  Not only does Raptor run a sexual offender and predator check on each visitor, but it also keeps a record of every person who is visiting a campus, so that we have a record if we need to identify victims or perpetrators in the event of an attack.  I hate that we have to take these steps, but I would rather be inconvenienced and alive than the alternative.  Thank you for your cooperation.

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PDCP Annual Program Performance Report 2018

The district’s professional development certification program (alternative teacher certification) is top notch!  We have once again received the highest state evaluation scores in all program categories.  Our program often sets the standard, and HREQ has provided guidance to districts throughout the state.  In fact, Educator Quality Specialist Sarah Apsey recently presented information at the request of the DOE to describe our best practices for success.  HREQ has grown our district’s PDCP program to around triple the size in the last several years, used it as an innovative recruitment pipeline, and kept a competitive edge compared to surrounding districts.  

PDCP Annual Program Performance Report 2018
Comparison of nearby counties – rating is between 1 and 4.


Five Pasco Schools Named U.S. News & World Report Best High Schools

Land O’ Lakes High School led Pasco County’s list of five high schools on the U.S. News & World Report list of 2018 Best High Schools, followed by J.W. Mitchell, Wiregrass Ranch, and Sunlake high schools, and Pasco e-School.
“They are among the elite schools that scored high enough to earn a Gold, Silver, or Bronze Best High Schools ‘badge,’” said Mark W. White, vice president, Specialty Marketing, for U.S. News & World Report, in his notification to the school district.  Click here to read the full press release.


Summer CPR/First Aid/AED Training

Trainings will be held on June 19, July 10, and July 17, at the district office complex from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.  If you are interested in attending, please complete the registration form and return it before July 15.  For more information, click here.  If you have any questions, contact Linda Graham at (813) 794-2360.  Click here for the registration form.


Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

All teachers and students in grades K through 8 now have the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge icon on their LaunchPad in myPascoConnect. Teachers, you will need to login to myPascoConnect, click on the Scholastic Summer Reading app, and enter the universal access code FBVL5CV to grant access to your students.  Click here for more information about the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge.  Students use this link to sign in.  Click here for a flyer with additional information about the challenge.


Algebra Nation Teacher of the Month

Congratulations to Nathan Howe, Sunlake High School, who is Algebra Nation's Spotlight Teacher of the Month! Each month, they recognize teachers like Nathan, who foster a community of growth and learning for students throughout Florida.

Nathan graduated Magna Cum Laude from USF with a degree in Science. While his first job out of college was in retail, he soon made the transition to teaching. He shared, "I made up my mind one day after a long day of work that I wanted to be a teacher." He is now a high school Algebra 1 teacher. He chose to teach Math because he excelled in it while in high school and knew there was a high demand for Math teachers. Nathan feels he has truly found happiness with teaching, and acknowledges that while every day isn't perfect, he is fortunate to teach at a great school, in a great District, with supportive faculty and administration.

Nathan uses Algebra Nation in his classroom daily. The resources he uses the most are the mini assessments as bell-work and the independent practice as homework. Additionally, Nathan teaches the daily lesson from the workbook, and has absent students watch assigned videos to keep up with topics they missed. Nathan's use of the Algebra Nation resources are brilliant! For being the Teacher of the Month, Nathan received a gift card to Amazon to purchase supplies for his classroom. Post on the Teacher Wall today to earn your chance at becoming an Algebra Nation Teacher of the Month!


Take Stock in Children

For the 2017-2018 school year, Take Stock in Children Pasco had the good fortune of having 117 volunteer mentors share their time and talent with 123 of our students in 25 schools. Our mentors provided approximately 1,800 volunteer hours, dedicating themselves to our program.  

Papa John's Teacher Appreciation

50% Off Online Orders

Click here for promo code.


Sprint Mother's Day Event

Sprint has put together exclusive offers and savings for mom and the entire family!  The deals are only good for mother's day weekend so head into a store near you to take advantage of these limited time offers before they are gone!   Click here for more information.


H & R Block Teacher Appreciation

Each Teacher will receive the following:

  • Free 2017 return overview – They say double-checking is never a bad idea, and that especially goes for reviewing an old tax return. In fact, you could be entitled to a bigger refund than you actually received last year - and even up to two years before that. Second Look® is free.
  • Tax Cut and Job Act (TCJA) Impact Estimator – Discuss potential TCJA impacts on your 2018 return. Free forward look at how the new tax law will impact your taxes next year.
  • IRS Withholding Calculator – Determine adjustments you may want to make on the W-4. 

These tax tips and services are courtesy of H&R Block.  For more information on these tax tips – or any tax question – you may contact your local H&R Block office.


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Professional Development Summit at USF

Texas Instruments, Inc. is hosting a two-day professional development summit at the University of South Florida on June 21 and 22. Participants will choose four three-hour sessions from math, science, STEM, and best practices strands. The cost is $150 without TI technology and $250 with TI technology, which includes a TI graphing handheld (either the TI-84CE or TI-Nspire CX) and a TI-Innovator Hub.  Click here for more details and registration information.


2018-2019 Mathematics Materials Review Team - Calling All Math Enthusiasts

Starting in June, and throughout the 2018-19 school year, Pasco County Schools will engage in a rigorous instructional materials review and adoption process for mathematics, and we are seeking teacher leaders, instructional coaches, and school-based leaders to be a part of this process.  Our team needs members who have a passion for mathematics, successful experience in the classroom, and a deep understanding of the standards and shifts related to mathematics. If this is you, and you are seeking to collaborate, talk math, and review a variety of materials with teachers and leaders from across the county and the state, click here to apply.

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School Spotlight

Wiregrass Ranch High School Hosts Special Needs Prom


Student Spotlights

Adis Kukuljac - J.W. Mitchell High School and Chase Olivanti - Wiregrass Ranch High School
Adis and Chase have been selected to attend the International Science and Engineering Fair in Pittsburgh, PA. 

Learn more about these incredible students.


Why are you interested in science?

Adis- I am interested in science because of its application to the real world. It may seem as if it only consists of conceptual ideas, but it is the best way for us to fulfill all of our curiosities about the world.

Chase- I am interested in science as a subject because there are so many things to be gained from scientific knowledge. Science is not simply an explanation of how something works. When you become a scientist, you become a problem solver. I have learned how to apply the scientific method of thinking to areas outside of science, and I believe that this has made me a better student.


Which teachers have helped you become successful?

Adis- Both Mr.Braddy and Dr. Yu Chen have helped me become successful. Mr. Braddy sparked my passion for biology and chemistry in the 10th grade because of the manner in which he taught the courses; he didn't just focus on the conceptual ideas, but got me to understand the real world applications of what I learn in the classroom and to always take pride in the work that I do. Dr. Chen was my mentor throughout my actual experimental process. He taught me everything that I need to know in order to properly gather data in a laboratory setting and how to make sense of this data so that it has strong real world implications.

Chase- My interest in the field of science was peaked my freshman year when my biology teacher, Mr. Branden Anglin, informed me of the opportunities I had in science, more specifically, the science fair. He saw the potential in me as a science student, even when I didn't, and for that I am extremely grateful. I do attribute a large portion of my success to his dedication to me as a student and persistence in pushing me to be my best.


What are your future plans with science?

Adis- I plan to major in biochemistry at the University of South Florida to eventually become a physician or drug developer.

Chase- As far as where I plan to take my research in the future, I would love to be able to publish the finished project and research behind it following its completion, which is scheduled to be in March of 2020. After I graduate, I plan to pursue a major in Biology and then my degree in medicine.

Staff in the Spotlight

Doreen Grote, Graduation Coach, Hudson High School. Click here to learn more.


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Graduation Ceremonies


2018 Pasco County Disaster Expo

The Pasco County Division of Emergency Management would like to invite you to the 2018 Disaster Expo on Saturday, June 9, from 10 a.m. to  2 p.m.  The expo will be held at the Land O' Lakes Recreation Center at 3032 Collier Parkway.  The goal of the expo is to provide as much property- and life-saving information, as it relates to disaster preparedness, to as many people as possible.

The 2018 hurricane season is predicted to have an above average number of hurricanes.  Hurricane season begins on June 1, and runs through November 30.  As seen last year, hurricanes can devastate a home, neighborhood, or an entire community if we are not properly prepared.  Please take time to prepare yourself and your family for this potentially active upcoming hurricane season.  Below are community resources to help plan if you need to take action during a hurricane.


Help Us Celebrate Lisa Hacker Miller’s Retirement

After 35 years in education, Lisa Hacker Miller is retiring. The celebration will begin at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, May 29, at Beef O’ Brady’s across from the district office complex.  RSVP for her retirement celebration to Noreen Kraebel.  Click here to view the invitation.


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Elizabeth Trevino, Thank you so much for helping translate for an IEP meeting at the last minute.  You are a blessing.  I want you to know that I appreciate you and everything you do for our kids at WRHS. - Carmen Baez, ESE Secretary, WRHS


Superintendent Browning, We would like to give a shoutout to Odalis Tavares of Leading and Learning. Odalis was here at Marlowe and realized a student needed some tennis shoes. She was so kind to stop by the next morning and bring shoes to our student. We appreciate her kindess!! - Melissa Richarz and Charlene Brown


Superintendent Browning, We wanted to thank  Amanda Phillips, Mary Ch-Hab, Larry Dorman, and all the support staff who helped Hudson Elementary get their materials for testing end of course exams.  The individuals mentioned, and those who worked behind the scenes, put in their time to ensure that our scholars were able to take their EOC assessments in the fashion they were accustomed to taking.  This meant more time copying, more time packing, and more time delivering materials to our school.  Throughout this process Amanda took the time to problem solve with me how we could accomplish this task with kindness and patience.  It was truly a labor of love and we are very grateful. - Sonya Basinger and Dawn Scilex

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School Matters is Superintendent Browning’s weekly newsletter to employees and is published by the Communications and Government Relations Department. It is an employee’s one-stop source for District news, events, and instructional videos.
Pasco County Schools does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex/gender, religion, national origin, marital status, disability, age or genetic information in its educational programs, services or activities, or in its hiring and employment practices. (read more)