May 2024 Family and Community Newsletter


Superintendent's Message

Dear Students and Parents,

As we approach the final stretch of the school year, I want to take a moment to commend all of our students for their hard work and dedication thus far. Your commitment to your education is truly inspiring, and I encourage you to continue giving your best effort in the remaining weeks.

As the days grow longer and the temperatures rise, it’s important to stay focused on finishing the year strong. Keep attending classes regularly, staying engaged in your studies, and maintaining strong grades. Every day of learning counts, and your efforts now will set you up for success in the future.

As we look forward to the summer months ahead, I want to remind everyone to prioritize safety. Whether you’re enjoying time at the pool, going on vacation, or simply spending time outdoors, it’s crucial to stay safe and healthy. Here are some tips to help you have a safe and enjoyable summer:

  1. Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of water, especially on hot days, to stay hydrated and prevent heat-related illnesses.
  2. Use sunscreen: Protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays by applying sunscreen regularly, especially if you’ll be spending time outdoors.
  3. Practice water safety: If you’ll be swimming or participating in water activities, make sure to follow safety guidelines and never swim alone.  Have a dedicate adult watching children when they are in the water, as most drownings occur when they are not properly supervised.
  4. Wear helmets: Whether biking, skateboarding, or riding a scooter, always wear a helmet to protect yourself from head injuries.
  5. Stay aware of your surroundings: Whether at home or while traveling, be mindful of your surroundings and stay alert to potential hazards.

As we approach the end of the school year, remember that every day is an opportunity to learn and grow. Stay focused, stay determined, and finish the year strong. Together, we can make this a successful end to the school year and a safe and enjoyable summer for all as we continue to cultivate your world class education.

Thank you for your continued support and enjoy these final weeks of the school year!

Sincerely,

Superintendent Kurt Browning

Featured Story


Pasco Pathways Innovative Programs and School Choice Upcoming Important Dates

The Pasco County Schools school choice application window will open on Monday, April 15, 2024 at 8 a.m., and close on Friday, April 19, 2024, at 4:30 p.m...

The Pasco County Schools school choice application window will open on Monday, April 15, 2024, at 8 a.m., and close on Friday, April 19, 2024, at 4:30 p.m.

At that time, the Pasco Pathways Innovative Programs and School Choice application will be available for parents via the myStudent parent portal.

This application window will be for select school choice options, including STEM and STEAM magnet schools, James M. Marlowe STEAM Magnet Elementary School, Centennial STEAM Magnet Elementary School, Wendell Krinn Technical High School, Kirkland Ranch K-8, International Baccalaureate (IB), and the Cambridge Programme. Please note that some schools, grade levels, and programs have extremely limited seats available.

Mark your calendar with the following important dates:

  • Pasco Pathways Application Window - April 15, 2024 to April 19, 2024
  • Notification and Acceptance Window - May 13, 2024 to May 17, 2024

The programs and schools that will be listed during the next application window will be posted on our Pasco Pathways Innovative Programs and School Choice web page prior to the window opening.

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This Month


Spring State Assessments and Testing Tips

The end of the school year is quickly approaching, and students will be taking their final FAST Progress Monitoring (PM3) assessment and End of Course assessments. District test window information can be found on the...

The end of the school year is quickly approaching, and students will be taking their final FAST Progress Monitoring (PM3) assessment and End of Course assessments. District test window information can be found on the Office for Accountability, Research, and Measurement website along with information about specific tests and how to prepare for them. When you visit the website, the calendars and test information can be found on the right-hand side of the page under "Measurement." For specific dates on when your child will take a test, please contact your child’s school.  

Here are some additional testing tips:

  • Make sure your child gets plenty of rest the night before.
  • Have your child eat a healthy breakfast at home or school.
  • Encourage your child to dress comfortably for the day.
  • Become familiar with the testing schedule for your child’s grade.  
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National Financial Literacy Month

This April we celebrate National Financial Literacy Month. This time is a great opportunity to highlight the importance of financial literacy and teach our students how to establish and maintain healthy financial habits...

This April, we celebrate National Financial Literacy Month. This time is a great opportunity to highlight the importance of financial literacy and teach our students how to establish and maintain healthy financial habits.

To celebrate the month and encourage our students to be financially smart citizens in our communities, Pasco County Schools, in partnership with our valued community partners, will offer virtual experiences and opportunities throughout the month. These events are designed to help parents/guardians, employees, community members, and students with financial planning matters and get more information for starting a financially successful future.

Please encourage your student to be on the lookout beginning April 1 on their myPascoConnect dashboard with information on how to access a course through myLearning to build their understanding of financial literacy and be entered to win prizes!  A Financial Literacy reading challenge will be available on student Beanstack dashboards from April 1 - 30. The challenge will include two 30-minute reading badges and two activity badges. Schools are encouraged to participate and promote student engagement with Financial Literacy topics. All stakeholders are encouraged to showcase the learning and tag #PascoFinancialLiteracy and #PCSCelebratesFinancialLiteracy on social media throughout the month. Varied student competitions, fun facts, and resources will be featured throughout the month. Visit the district's Financial Literacy webpage for regularly updated information and details about the upcoming activities and competitions.

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World Class Opportunities


STEAMsational Summer Camps

Registration opened for our STEAMsational Summer Camps on April 1st, 2024. The camps will operate from June 3, 2024 - August 7, 2024 from 6:30 a.m. - 6 p.m. The cost to attend is $135 for each child with a $30 non-refundable registration fee...

Registration opened for our STEAMsational Summer Camps on April 1st, 2024. The camps will operate from June 3, 2024 - August 7, 2024 from 6:30 a.m. - 6 p.m. The cost to attend is $135 for each child with a $30 non-refundable registration fee. We will offer free breakfast and lunch at select locations. We will also offer tutoring for reading and math. Students will have the opportunity to participate in free in-house and out-of-house field trips. Kindergarten - 2nd grade students will visit Legoland, while 3rd - 5th grade students will visit Islands of Adventure.

Camps will be available at 14 elementary school sites:

  • Chasco Elementary School
  • Cotee River Elementary School
  • Double Branch Elementary School
  • Mary Giella Elementary School
  • Oakstead Elementary School
  • Odessa Elementary School
  • Pasco Elementary School
  • Sanders Memorial Elementary School
  • Schrader Elementary School
  • Seven Springs Elementary School
  • Starkey Ranch K-8
  • Trinity Elementary School
  • Wesley Chapel Elementary School
  • Woodland Elementary School

Register beginning April 1, 2024 by visiting our STEAMsational Summer Camps webpage.

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13 Schools Win Beanstack’s Inaugural Reading Culture Trailblazer Award

13 schools recently received Beanstack’s inaugural Reading Culture Trailblazer award. This recognition is given to schools who have at least 75 percent of students actively logging their reading since the beginning of the school year. This includes participation in the district...

13 schools recently received Beanstack’s inaugural Reading Culture Trailblazer award. This recognition is given to schools who have at least 75 percent of students actively logging their reading since the beginning of the school year. This includes participation in the district challenges (R.A.C.E. to Read, quarterly required instruction challenges, and Celebrate Literacy Week), as well as any individual school-based challenges.    

Each of the 13 schools received a $150 gift card redeemable at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Papa John’s, Dunkin, Target, or Walmart to celebrate reading or donate to charity. They also earned a Reading Culture Trailblazer digital badge.

Our Reading Culture Trailblazer schools are:  

  • Anclote Elementary School  
  • Centennial Middle School  
  • Connerton Elementary School  
  • Longleaf Elementary School  
  • New River Elementary School  
  • Pasco Elementary School  
  • Pine View Middle School  
  • R. B. Stewart Middle School  
  • Sanders Memorial Elementary School  
  • Sand Pine Elementary School  
  • Seven Oaks Elementary School  
  • Seven Springs Elementary School  
  • Watergrass Elementary School  

We are so proud of this recognition and the efforts of teachers and staff to increase student literacy!  We will continue encouraging all of our students to keep reading and hope to see more schools earn this award throughout the rest of the school year.

We are so proud of the creative bookmark entries we received during Celebrate Literacy Week! It was difficult to choose just one winner for each level: elementary, middle, and high school, so we are excited to announce that 5 winners were chosen at each level!    

  • Arri V., Connerton Elementary  
  • Brantley L, Mary Giella Elementary  
  • Laila O., Lake Myrtle Elementary  
  • Ira K., Pine View Elementary  
  • Penelope M., Pine View Elementary  
  • Aleksandra M., Seven Springs Middle School  
  • Jazmine M., Gulf Middle School  
  • Mila F., Seven Springs Middle School  
  • Gabriella G., Centennial Middle School  
  • Antonia M., Seven Springs Middle School  
  • Mariah M., Wiregrass Ranch High School  
  • Amber Y., Wiregrass Ranch High School  
  • Mr. Licklider, Pasco High School  
  • MJ B., Pasco High School  
  • Lena B., Wiregrass Ranch High School  

Each winning school will receive 500 bookmarks featuring the student's design for their library media center!  All winning bookmarks will also be displayed on the district website.  

Congratulations!    

 
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Pasco Students Speak

We are SO proud of all of our schools and students for participating in our annual Pasco Students Speak showcases that occurred throughout the county in February and March. Students had the opportunity to determine a topic around this year's Theme: "Turning Points in History"...

We are SO proud of all of our schools and students for participating in our annual Pasco Students Speak showcases that occurred throughout the county in February and March. Students had the opportunity to determine a topic around this year's Theme: "Turning Points in History" and research, write speeches, and present their speeches to their classmates and school.  

We are looking forward to seeing each school representative at our annual district showcase on Saturday, April 20th at the Wesley Chapel Performing Arts Center.  

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New Teacher Academy Final Day of Service

Last month, River Ridge High School New Teacher Academy (NTA) students celebrated their final day of service for the 2023-2024 school year. NTA students continue to inspire throughout their journey as future educators...

Last month, River Ridge High School New Teacher Academy (NTA) students celebrated their final day of service for the 2023-2024 school year. NTA students continue to inspire throughout their journey as future educators! Pasco County Schools offers a "Grow and Stay" partnership with NTA. Students who complete the NTA program and sign a conditional offer of employment to return to Pasco after completing their bachelor's degree from a college of education are guaranteed a teaching position in Pasco and receive a $1,000 stipend for "Growing and Staying" in Pasco! Want to learn more about how your student can join the New Teacher Academys at River Ridge High School, Zephyrhills High School, Wiregrass Ranch High School, or Pasco eSchool? Please visit our Pasco Pathways Innovative Programs and School Choice catalog to learn more.

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VPK Application and Summer Program

The Pasco County Schools 2024-2025 VPK application has officially reopened. Schools that are not full or need to build a waiting list will be available for selection on the application. Schools that are full with an extensive waitlist will...

The Pasco County Schools 2024-2025 VPK application has officially reopened. Schools that are not full or need to build a waiting list will be available for selection on the application. Schools that are full with an extensive waitlist will be deemed FROZEN and will not be available for selection. The application can be accessed by visiting the Early Childhood Programs website. A Certificate of Eligibility is required to complete the Pasco County Schools VPK application. 

The Certificate of Eligibility may be requested by contacting the Early Learning Coalition of Pasco and Hernando counties, elcph.org or (727) 569-1004.

2024 Summer VPK Program

Pasco County Schools will begin accepting applications for the summer VPK program at 8:00 a.m. on Monday, April 15, 2024. A summer Certificate of Eligibility is required to complete the application. The summer program will provide 300 hours of free instruction for children who will be enrolled in kindergarten during the 2024-2025 school year. Children who are currently enrolled in VPK are not eligible for the summer program.  

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Integrated Education and Training

The Integrated Education and Training (IET) pathway, for adult learners, fills in the gap between high school credentials and post-secondary pathway options...

The Integrated Education and Training (IET) pathway, for adult learners, fills in the gap between high school credentials and post-secondary pathway options. 

The IET pathway is designed to increase the number of adults with: 

  • Higher levels of literacy 
  • Digital literacy skills 
  • Industry-recognized credentials 
  • Postsecondary certifications 
  • Degrees in the state's high-growth priority sectors 

“Think of the IET pathway as dual enrollment for adult learners.” A student who demonstrates high school level ability on the CASAS entrance exam can work towards earning their high school diploma/GED and enroll as a student in one of our IET pathways! 

Pasco County Schools Adult Education, at Fred K. Marchman, currently has the following courses available to IET students: 

  • Applied Cybersecurity 
  • Patient Care Technician 
  • Welding Technology 
  • Early Childhood Development 
  • Professional Culinary 
  • Cosmetology 
  • Automotive Service Technology 
  • HVAC 
  • Postsecondary certifications 
  • Degrees in the state's high-growth priority sectors 

For additional information about the IET program, contact: 

Dr. David Ester, DBA, M.Ed. 

Integrated Education & Training GED Instructor 

Marchman Technical College CTAE 

Office: 727-774-1890 Email: dester@pasco.k12.fl.us 

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Florida Prepaid College Open Enrollment Begins with Lowest Prices in 10 Years

As our partner the Florida Prepaid College Plan Board celebrates 35 years of helping Florida families save affordably for college, they have lowered Prepaid Plan monthly prices by up to 25 percent during the Prepaid Plan Open Enrollment period from February 1 - April 30, 2024...

As our partner the Florida Prepaid College Plan Board celebrates 35 years of helping Florida families save affordably for college, they have lowered Prepaid Plan monthly prices by up to 25 percent during the Prepaid Plan Open Enrollment period from February 1 - April 30, 2024.

The reductions will bring Prepaid Plan prices to their lowest level in 10 years, starting at just $34 per month for a 1-Year University Plan for a newborn. The monthly cost of a four-year university plan for a newborn is down to $134 – that’s a monthly savings of about $50 compared to last year.

Our Prepaid Plans are made to fit growing families:

  • Risk-free: Your investment is protected by the State of Florida.
  • Flexible: Use in-state or out, at public or private colleges and universities, trade, and technical schools.
  • Worry-free: Cancel any time for a full refund or transfer to another family member.

To learn more, visit the Florida Prepaid website.

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Community Connections


Pasco County Disaster Preparedness Expo

The Pasco County Disaster Preparedness Expo will take place on Saturday, April 27, 2024 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. This FREE event is fun for the whole family!

The Pasco County Disaster Preparedness Expo will take place on Saturday, April 27, 2024 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

This FREE event is fun for the whole family! 

  • Entertainment 
  • Food Trucks 
  • Giveaways 
  • Demonstrations 
  • Information Booths 
  • Emergency Vehicle Displays 

The event will take place at Pasco Safety Town, 15362 Alric Pottberg Rd, Shady Hills, FL

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Beyond Career and Tech Expo

We are excited to share information about our upcoming Beyond! Career and Tech Expo is scheduled to take place on April 16 at Hudson High School and April 23 at Zephyrhills High School...

We are excited to share information about our upcoming Beyond! Career and Tech Expo is scheduled to take place on April 16th (Hudson High School) and April 23rd (Zephyrhills High School). This event aims to empower our graduating seniors with the knowledge, skills, and resources needed to thrive in their transition to their next phase of life.  

Participating students can connect with business and industry experts while gaining insights on various pathways into careers they are interested in and learn about existing opportunities right here in their community.  

Students will be given the opportunity to participate in career panel discussions, learn resume writing tips, interview skills, and connect with our business and industry partners through an expo-style setting.  

There are many ways you can get involved, including booth participation, sponsorship opportunities, and workshop facilitation. If interested, or if you would simply like more information, please contact Jennifer Batchelor at jbatchel@pasco.k12.fl.us.

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Family Information and Support


Your Questions, Our Support

Navigating digital platforms can sometimes be a challenge, but our dedicated staff is here for you. If you have any questions or need assistance, visit the FAQ section...

Navigating digital platforms can sometimes be a challenge, but our dedicated staff is here for you. If you have any questions or need assistance, visit the FAQ section right under the login area of your myStudent Parent Portal. Or if you need some additional help, just click the green Let's Talk link from nearly every page of the Pasco County Schools website.   

We're here for you, and your active participation is the key to a successful academic year. Let's continue this journey together, fostering learning, growth, and shared accomplishments. Thank you for being an integral part of the Pasco County Schools family. 

Here's to another month filled with educational milestones and achievements!

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Smooth Transitions: Navigating Next Year’s Enrollment with myStudent

Attention parents of current Pasco PK-12 students! Good news – your child is automatically enrolled for the upcoming school year! However, if you are New to Pasco...

Attention parents of current Pasco PK-12 students! Good news – your child is automatically enrolled for the upcoming school year! However, if you are New to Pasco County Schools, or your child is returning to Pasco having been enrolled before, don't worry; we've got you covered.

Start the registration process for the next academic term by visiting our enrollment web page. Follow the tailored path that suits your needs to create or access your myStudent Parent account. Get started now to ensure that your child is well-prepared for a successful start to the new school year.

Do you need assistance with enrollment? 

If you aren't sure where to start, or you need assistance with navigating the online enrollment process, we will offer our first in-person event!  On May 16, 2024 the enrollment team will be available (by appointment only) to assist you in person with all your enrollment needs. This includes support with Health Services (physicals and immunizations). If you need help, please request an appointment via our Appointment Request Form.

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Employment Opportunities


2024-2025 School Year Recruitment

Our HREQ Recruitment Team will be attending Valdosta State University's Spring Education Fair on April 10, and the Great Florida Teach-In on April 13, to recruit new and experienced teachers for the 2024-2025 school year...

Our HREQ Recruitment Team will be attending Valdosta State University's Spring Education Fair on April 10, and the Great Florida Teach-In on April 13, to recruit new and experienced teachers for the 2024-2025 school year! Our team strives to attract and retain dynamic educators for our schools to ensure that every student has a world-class teacher.  

Are you interested in working with Pasco County Schools? Apply today!

Connect with us on social media @HRPascoSchools!

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Important Safety Tips


Implementation of Alyssa’s Alert System in Florida Public Schools

Following the tragic events at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High school, a vital step has been taken to enhance safety measures in our public schools. With the hard work and dedication of Lori Alhadeff, the founder of Make Our Schools Safe...

Following the tragic events at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High school, a vital step has been taken to enhance safety measures in our public schools. With the hard work and dedication of Lori Alhadeff, the founder of Make Our Schools Safe, the Florida Legislature approved Senate Bill 70 during the 2020 Legislative Session. This bill mandates the implementation of a mobile panic alert system in all public schools across the state.
Named in memory of Alyssa Alhadeff, the foundation of Alyssa's Law requires that every Florida public elementary and secondary school building be equipped with a silent panic system alarm linked directly to local law enforcement. This critical tool aims to eliminate delays in emergency responses, ensuring that accurate and timely information is relayed to first responders in case of any crisis.

As of the 2021-2022 school year, all Florida public schools, including charters, are required to have the “Alyssa’s Alert” system in place. This system will enable immediate coordination between various emergency services technologies, facilitating real-time communication among multiple first responder agencies.

The Pasco County School District takes the safety of our students and staff very seriously not only by following Alyssa’s law, but by ensuring all our staff members are trained regularly to become proficient utilizing this technology.

The District believes that the well-being of our students and staff are of utmost importance, and having an Alyssa’s alert system in place helps in creating a secure learning environment for everyone. 

Safety and Security Department
 

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Pasco County Schools: We exist to provide a World Class Education.

Important Links