School choice week gives options on education

Posted at 5:28 PM, Jan 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-25 17:30:10-05

National School Choice week kicks off Monday, and many Florida parents still have time to choose where their child will go to school next year.

Centennial Middle School in Dade City is a place kids get deep immersion in technology. In fact, it's becoming a magnet school next year -- a STEM specialty school.

"Everything we're teaching them is going to be used in the future," said Stephen Mumaw, a Centennial Middle School business teacher.

Mumaw has already seen students accomplish amazing things and is excited that kids who want to come here have that option.

"I think it's important to be able to go out and see what opportunities are available at each school so that you can decide what school is best," he said.

But magnet schools like Centennial Middle School one are not the only option. There's also traditional schools, private schools, charter schools, even homeschooling and online schools that students and parents can pick from.

"As a parent, what's best for your child?" Rick Saylor, Centennial Middle School Principal, said parents need to ask themselves. "Which avenue do you think is going to help your child be the most successful?"

Administrators say while a specialty magnet program may be best for one child, online school may be better for another.

"I think anytime parents can ask, 'What's that niche? What helps them to be the most successful?'" Saylor said.

Administrators recommend first starting out on your school district website to look at school options, and then call a few schools and schedule a tour or meeting.

"To me, it's important because I want to feel comfortable where my kids are going to school," Mumaw said.

They say nearly every school will be able to help parents find out if their school is right for their child.