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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

First day goals at Pasco County's newest middle-high school

Teacher Tico Hernandez helps seventh grader Savannah Maniscalco navigate brand new Cypress Creek Middle-High School on the first day of classes.

Jeffrey S. Solochek

Teacher Tico Hernandez helps seventh grader Savannah Maniscalco navigate brand new Cypress Creek Middle-High School on the first day of classes.

14

August

"If you need help, let me know!"

Graduation enhancement coach Tico Hernandez strode the quad at Cypress Creek Middle-High School, schedule information in hand, repeating the offer as students streamed in search of their first period classes.

Seventh grader Savannah Maniscalco stopped Hernandez to find out what room she needed to report to, and where exactly Building 2 might be.

"It's a really big school, and really cool," Savannah, 12, said. "But honestly, I'm a little terrified because it's such a big school and I'm so short and tiny."

Hernandez reassured her that all would be fine, and gave her detailed information about how to get where she needed to be. Then he moved on to the next questions, until first period began.

"Once we put kids' success as our foremost foundation and building block, everything else will take care of itself," he said.

Principal Carin Hetzler-Nettles had plenty to deal with as hundreds of students and their parents arrived. Several needed new schedules. The school's bell system wasn't ringing loudly enough. 

She looked past the mechanics to the key for Cypress Creek's success: The kids need to have a great first day.

"I want them to go home and not be able to tell their parents which of their teachers are their favorites, because they're all awesome," Hetzler-Nettles said.

[Last modified: Monday, August 14, 2017 11:58am]

    

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