When considering moving to Dana Shores, potential residents often inquire about schools. Hillsborough County has one of the largest school districts in the country. As County residents, we have many options.
Dana Shores is zoned for Dickenson Elementary, Webb Middle School, and Jefferson High School. You can check out school grades here: http://www.fldoe.org/accountability/accountability-reporting/school-grades/.
In addition to these schools and various private-school options, several programs are available to Dana Shores residents within Hillsborough County Public Schools including magnet programs, school choice, choice attractor programs, and charter schools. We’ve provided some detail on each of these programs and you can also find out more here: https://www.sdhc.k12.fl.us/doc/221. The application period for magnet and choice programs generally runs from late October through sometime in December each year; families are typically notified of admission decisions in January or February.
The following decision tree may prove useful in navigating some of these options.
Magnet Schools and Programs include elementary, middle, and high schools that offer theme-based curriculum along with innovative and rigorous academic instruction by specially trained teachers in smaller learning communities. Students in magnet programs are kept within their program. They rarely mix with the local students who were assigned to the school based on their address. This allows magnet students to participate in specialized programs based on their interests, skills, and abilities. Some options include STEM (Science / Technology / Engineering / Math) magnets, the arts, Law & Criminal Justice Leadership Academy, Maritime and Marine Environmental Science Leadership Academy, International Baccalaureate programs (IB), and all-girls or all-boys preparatory programs.
There are other schools with Collegiate Academy and/or Dual Enrollment programs which allow students to get their Associate of Arts degree (AA) during high school. This is a great option for saving on college tuition.
All elementary and middle school magnet applications received during the application period are entered into a computer lottery. All magnet high school applications are entered into a database for each program and reviewed based on the requirements of the selected program.
To learn more about magnet programs, visit https://www.sdhc.k12.fl.us/doc/230/magnet-schools-education/about/magnet-about/.
REQUIREMENTS: Application processes vary depending on the type of program. Some programs may also have admission requirements (e.g., GPA, test scores, prerequisite classes, or an audition for an arts program).
DISTRICT-PROVIDED TRANSPORTATION: Available for magnet programs excluding Tinker K-8, Rampello Downtown Partnership School K-8, and Roland Park K-8.
School Choice provides parents and legal guardians with children entering grades K-11 an opportunity to apply to three non-magnet schools. Parents may select from a list of schools with space available. Admittance is determined by a computer lottery system.
The county also offers Attractor Programs (Career & Tech Ed) at undercrowded schools to increase the number of opted-in students. These programs are generally geared toward specific groups such as gifted students or those looking to specialize in a given discipline such as photography and visual arts, finance, or engineering.
A student may apply to both School Choice and Magnet Programs, but all other options are nullified once a student accepts a seat at a school. The biggest difference between School Choice and Magnet Programs/Schools is degree of focus. Students in a Magnet Program generally focus their studies in one area. Students in the School Choice program enjoy a broader experience and often study core subjects with other students from the local population.
To explore what options are available to you, visit https://edconnect.sdhc.k12.fl.us/GisUtils/Transportation.faces. Please note that while the application period is closed (until mid-late October), this will only show your attendance area schools. Once the application period opens, all available options will display.
REQUIREMENTS: Application that goes into the computer lottery.
DISTRICT-PROVIDED TRANSPORTATION: Transportation may be limited or not available in some areas.
Charter schools are independent public schools operated by a non-profit organization. They hire their own teachers, design their own academic programs, and control their own finances. They have their own board of directors that make decisions for the school.
All charter schools must provide a curriculum that meets the Florida Standards and Sunshine State Standards, and they must hire certified teachers. In Florida, charter schools are accountable to the school district in which they reside for student academic performance and fiscal management, but they are not managed by the district.
To learn more about charter schools, visit https://www.sdhc.k12.fl.us/doc/920/charter-schools/about/charter-about/.
REQUIREMENTS: Application varies depending on the charter school; contact the specific charter school for inquiries.
DISTRICT-PROVIDED TRANSPORTATION: Not available.
Home / Virtual Education
Home education is defined by Florida Statute as “sequentially progressive instruction of a student directed by his or her parent in order to satisfy the attendance requirements of SS. 1002.41, 1003.01 (4), and 1003.21 (1).” The law requires that the parent meet one of the following conditions:
- The parent must hold a valid regular Florida certificate in the subjects or grades to be taught and comply with any other requirements prescribed by law, or
The parent does not hold a valid regular certificate to teach but complies with the following requirements:
- Notifies the superintendent of schools of the county in which the parent resides of his or her intent to establish a home education program.
- Maintains a portfolio of records and materials.
- Provides an annual educational evaluation.
Families may use Hillsborough Virtual School (HVS) or Florida Virtual School (FLVS) courses as part of their home education program. Students must take a minimum of one full year of English/Language Arts and Math to use the transcript for the annual evaluation. For middle- and high school students, FLVS provides a course progressions guide for your convenience.
There are many private school options in Hillsborough County and near Dana Shores specifically. Private schools are independent and are operated by a variety of organizations. They hire their own teachers, design their own academic programs, and control their own finances. They have their own board of directors that makes decisions for the school.
Unlike charter schools, private schools are not required to provide a curriculum that meets the Florida Standards and Sunshine State Standards and are also not required to hire certified teachers. In Florida, private schools are not accountable to the school district in which they reside for student academic performance and fiscal management and are not managed by the district. Annual tuition varies widely, averaging around $12k per school year and ranging up to $26k for high school preparatory options such as nearby Berkeley Prep.
To learn more about these options, contact the individual schools directly.
There are many factors to consider when choosing a school. Aside from transportation issues, there are additional factors to consider such as peer group, school and teacher standards, interests, academic rigor, tuition costs, access to extra-curricular activities, guidance resources, and scholarship options. If you’d like help connecting with other Dana Shores parents or guardians who have chosen one of the options you might be considering, feel free to email us at email@example.com.
For more information on Hillsborough County Public School options, contact the Choice Information Line at 813-272-4692, check out the FAQs from Hillsborough County Schools here (https://www.sdhc.k12.fl.us/doc/660), or attend one of the district events hosted each fall.