Pasco school board vote finalizes Ridgewood High School conversion plan

By Laurie Davison, Reporter
Last Updated: Tuesday, January 16, 2018, 11:47 PM EST

Pasco County School Board members voted on Jan. 16 to convert Ridgewood High School in New Port Richey into a new technical school.

  • School will become Wendell Krinn Technical School
  • Current Ridgewood students will be re-assigned to neighboring schools
  • Some parents threatening lawsuits

"We really wanted to get something in that side of the county for industry," said Pasco County Schools spokesperson Linda Cobb, "for our businesses to offer programs for students so they can go into the work force immediately with certification."

Following this school year, Ridgewood's students will be re-assigned to nearby traditional high school. Parents who oppose the plan called the move "difficult."

"At this time we're trying to decide whether or not she should stay at that school," said one parent speaking to the board at the meeting. "I've received no information except for a post card in the mail about what options our juniors have at that school, since they're losing out on their senior year."

RELATED: Pasco eyes tech school on county's east side

Other parents threatened legal action.

"I'm retaining a lawyer and doing what I can do to make sure my boy's able to graduate and possibly have athletics at that school," another parent said. "So this is going to cost you. You made the wrong decision."

Last year, however, one Ridgewood student told us a tech school could give her more options.

“Radiology works with a lot of technical machines and stuff like that, and I’ll be able to be exposed to more of that kind of study," said student Megan Hanley in August 2017.

District officials said some of the specifics of the change are still being worked out, but they're hoping for a smooth transition. The district is currently accepting applications for Wendell Krinn Technical School, which, if all goes as planned, will open in August for the 2018-2019 school year.