Pasco County Schools (PCS) established in 1887, is the 10th largest district in Florida and the 56th largest district nationally. For the 2017-2018 school year, the district has 80 traditional public schools (49 elementary, 16 middle schools, 15 high schools), 6 education centers, 1 virtual school (K-12) and 11 charter schools serving approximately 75,970 students.
Pasco County Schools will facilitate an increased understanding of youth risk behaviors and school health policies and practices by education and public health agencies. The first year, PCS will target a subset of schools, (10 schools; 11,102 students) before expanding in years 2-5 to all secondary schools, (30 schools; 40,705 students).
Pasco County Schools staff, specifically, the Health Education Specialist and Health Resource Teacher will hand deliver all surveys to school Principals and Lead Health Educators and collect each respondent’s survey throughout the five year term of the agreement. Otherwise, staff will follow the instructions set forth in the two handbooks for conducting YRBS and School Health Profiles’ surveys.
The Pasco County Schools HIV/STD Prevention Education Project will implement specific instructional competencies in compliance with Florida Statute 1003.42(2)(n), Comprehensive Health Education, that requires abstinence from sexual activity be taught as the expected standard.
Pasco County’s HIV/STD Project exemplary sexual health education curriculum will be developed and training will be provided to middle and high school teachers of health education and sexual health education content. The project will provide professional development (PD) for our two newly adopted and required health education courses: MJ Health 4, and Health Opportunities through Physical Education (HOPE) Core.
The Pasco County Schools HIV/STD Prevention Education Project will implement targeted technical assistance activities in the 10 priority schools during 2018-2023. The HIV/STD Prevention Education Project, in collaboration with the Pasco County Health Department (PCHD) and the Pasco County Schools’ Office of Student Support Services staff, will provide intense technical assistance to the priority schools to assist them with providing or accessing key sexual health services to meet the HIV/STD and teen pregnancy prevention needs.
Our project, in year one, will enhance the Pasco County School’s Safe and Support Environments (SSE) campaign by developing a comprehensive list of information that will connect students to community based organizations that promote service learning or youth mentoring. We will accomplish this by maintaining constant communication with priority school staff on positive youth development programs.