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Palm Coast Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017 1 year ago

School Board praises Palm Coast's plan to donate fire truck to Flagler Palm Coast High School Fire Academy

The TRAIL Program spotlighted students for Disability History and Awareness Weeks during the School Board workshop on Tuesday as well.
by: Paige Wilson Community Editor

Flagler Palm Coast High School Fire Academy students will soon have a big, red fire engine to call their own.

Palm Coast Deputy Fire Chief Gerry Forte (right) discusses the plan to donate a fire truck to FPC's Fire Academy during the School Board workshop. Photo by Paige Wilson

The Flagler School Board praised Palm Coast Fire Department’s plan to donate a fire truck to the FPC Fire Academy students during the School Board meeting on Oct. 3.

“I’ve been teaching for 19 years, and the moment you take them from a book and you put them on a fire engine, the world completely changes,” said Palm Coast Deputy Fire Chief Gerry Forte. “And it does two things: it either confirms exactly their decision that this is what they want to do for the rest of their life, or it says, ‘Eh, this might not be for me. Maybe I’ll try something else.’”

School Board member Maria Barbosa said she’s happy about the tangible learning opportunity for students.

“On the student side of it, as Chief (Forte) said, it’s an opportunity for those kids to have that hands-on experience,” said FPC Principal Dusty Sims.

Positive Influence

Flagler County Fire Leadership Academy is in partnership with Flagler County Fire Rescue and Flagler County Schools, specifically FPC, to provide students with the opportunity to certify as “Firefighter 2” under Florida State Standards, according to a press release from Flagler County.

Surrounding areas, including Clay County, are looking to Flagler County as an example in this field.

Members of the Clay County School Board and Clay County Fire Rescue recently visited FPC with Fire Rescue Chief Don Petito and classroom instructor Fire Lt. Andy Keppler to see the program themselves.

“Flagler County’s desire to create true classroom-to-career opportunities is shared by our neighboring counties, as we share similarities in the need to prepare our students to live, work and raise families right where they live,” Sims said in the release. “I look forward to assisting Clay County to do what is right and good for Clay and their students.”

Transition Coordinator Dr. Kim Halliday (left) stands with TRAIL students David Ellis, Jasmine Deen, ESE teacher Jill Kulwick and TRAIL student Evan Stausser. Photo by Paige Wilson


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