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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Pasco school choice decisions expected next month



Pasco County families had until March 1 to submit their school open enrollment requests if they wanted their children to attend somewhere other than their zoned school.

Nearly two months later, parents and children have no answers whether they got the campus of their choice. District spokeswoman Linda Cobbe said the 2016-17 choice results should be released some time in May.

Unlike magnet applications, which district officials promised to complete within two weeks of the deadline, open enrollment requests take longer to process because they affect so many more schools. For next year, 26 schools are frozen to choice because of crowding, for instance.

Even some schools with seats available do not necessarily have vacancies in all grade levels. The district must comply with the state class size amendment, too, which limits the number of children in each classroom. (Pasco has used a legal loophole to ease that restraint, but it still comes with restrictions.)

Since class size rules took effect, the percentage of approved choice applications in Pasco has dramatically dropped -- particularly since the most desired schools generally have been the most crowded ones. The administration has announced plans to expand other choice opportunities in coming years.

[Last modified: Thursday, April 21, 2016 9:55am]


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