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New IDEA Public Schools coming to Tampa

Posted at 4:05 PM, Sep 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-17 04:58:29-04

TAMPA, Fla. — Options when it comes to education in some Tampa Bay area neighborhoods are limited, but there is a new alternative about to burst onto the scene and it’s set to break ground on four new schools.

“I want to see my granddaughter go to a school that’s going to give her every available option so that she can be successful and prepare her in the event that she does want to go to college,” said Sheila Johnson of East Tampa.

It is these desires from members of the community that placed the Tampa Bay area as the newest location for the next batch of IDEA Public Schools.

“Graduating from high school isn’t the end game right, it's about all we are doing to prepare them to go to and through college,” said Julene Robinson with Idea Public Schools.

The non-profit charter school system currently has 96 schools across Texas and Louisiana, and they plan to add four more in Tampa by the year 2021, specifically East Tampa.

“Where are these areas where students still need and deserve better options and better choices in education and we really looked at the greater East Tampa Bay Community,” said Robinson.

IDEA has already begun educating future principals and teachers in the area, like Sala Sims.

“It’s an amazing opportunity for us to bring high quality education to the city of Tampa particularly communities that have been served in some cases chronically underperforming schools,” said Sims.

Johnson said the timing couldn’t be better for their granddaughter.

“We do get a bad rap because we are in the inner city however I do see that my area is growing and things are getting better,” said Johnson.

For more information on how to enroll, go to