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Palm Coast Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020 1 week ago

School district gains 30 acres for potential future elementary school

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Also: School Board considers legislative platform options.
by: Jonathan Simmons News Editor

Flagler Schools has received 30.15 acres of land from Palm Coast Holdings in exchange for credits on school impact fees — the money the company would otherwise have to pay the school district when 150 nearby Palm Coast Holdings residential lots are sold to builders. 

The 30.15 acres are on the west side of US 1 about half a mile south of its intersection with Old Kings Road, and would be appropriately sized for the construction of a new elementary school, district staff told School Board members during an Oct. 6 board workshop. 

The land is adjacent to land owned by the county government.

Palm Coast Holdings has also agreed to manage the parcel's stormwater drainage through an adjacent site owned by the company. 

The elementary school that is closest to the 30.15 acre parcel is Belle Terre Elementary, about 4.5 miles southeast. If the 30.15-acre parcel becomes a school site, it would be the northernmost public school in Flagler County.

School Board considers legislative platform

The Flagler County School District is making a list of possible requests to the Florida Legislature. Among the potential asks: That the state fully fund any new requirement it enacts for school districts, that it reinstate grant money for the training of school guardians under the guardian security program implemented after the Parkland shooting, and that it create a program that would allow districts to access some school funding earlier in the fiscal year than usual. 

The school district compiles such a list every year as part of its official legislative platform, and a discussion about the planks of that platform during an Oct. 6 School Board workshop was still preliminary.

The School Board plans to pare the number of legislative requests down to five. 

"I think five will at least have people's attention," Board member Colleen Conklin said.

School Board Attorney Kristy Gavin presented some options drawn from the Florida School Boards Association, and Conklin proposed a few more. 

Other proposals included full funding of school transportation, full funding to support students' dual enrollment options and courses beyond the six-period day, and ensuring that private schools that receive public funds are held to the same standards as public schools.

Conklin and Gavin will work on the platform for consideration at a future board meeting.

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