Pasco schools' student counts leads to 26 campuses frozen for choice
Twenty-six Pasco County schools are now closed for open enrollment from outside their attendance boundaries, after officials reviewed student counts on the 20th day of classes.
The number is down from 2015, when 29 schools were frozen for choice. Since then, the district has opened new campuses and magnet programs, which have helped to draw children away from the most crowded locations and fill previously unused seats.
Double Branch Elementary, for instance, was overflowing before, but with the opening of Wiregrass Elementary this fall, it now has available space. Bayonet Point Middle, as another example, was at 58 percent of its capacity last year, but this year is up to 84 percent with the addition of a new STEM program.
Parents are keeping a close eye on these figures this year, as they've been monitoring district plans to redraw attendance zones to ease crowding at several schools. Some have called on the district to ensure that children living in the current zones are not removed while those from outside remain. The district traditionally requires all students on choice to reapply after a rezoning.
The list of frozen schools is:
Elementary - Anclote, Chasco, Connerton, Cypress, Giella, New River, Oakstead, Odessa, Sand Pine, Seven Oaks, Veterans, Wesley Chapel, West Zephyrhills and Woodland
Middle - Long, Rushe, Seven Springs, Weightman
High - Land O'Lakes, Mitchell, Pasco, Sunlake, Wesley Chapel, Wiregrass Ranch, Zephyrhills