That break might come soon if Vice President Joe Biden has his way. Biden intends to visit Oakstead Elementary School in Land O’ Lakes today, Oct. 4, on a tour urging Congress to pass the American Jobs Act. The proposed bill includes an estimated $32 million for Pasco County Schools, said Summer Romagnoli, district spokeswoman.
If the bill passes, Romagnoli said the money could be used to put teachers back into the classrooms. It could also be used to ease overcrowding at schools like Oakstead that are operating well above capacity.
Oakstead, she said, opened six years ago with a design to accommodate 700 students. It now has an enrollment that tops 1,100. There are more than 22 portables on the campus.
“That certainly is not an ideal situation,” she said.
Oakstead also had to lay off eight of its 83 teachers because of the district's budget shortfall that topped $50 million this year.
The $32 million could be put to good use in Pasco, Romagnoli said.
Funding issues aside, Biden's visit is "exciting," said both Romagnoli and Oakstead's principal Tammy Kimpland.
For Kimpland the vice presidential visit is a chance for Oakstead students to witness history.
“(We’re) very honored,” she said.
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