Flagler Schools plans to eliminate tennis courts and demolish a 25-year-old portable building at the Belle Terre Swim and Racquet Club facilities so that the property can accommodate school district programs currently hosted elsewhere, while keeping the popular swimming pool. itself open to the public, a district representative told county commissioners at a committee meeting on Oct. 4.
“We need to have community opportunities to [seniors] be engaged and involved. … Our intention is to continue completely with an organization that will allow the use by our citizens.
– PAUL PEACOCK, Chief Operating Officer of Flagler Schools
The plan, said district operations chief Paul Peacock, is still conceptual.
“We are just starting the approval process,” he told the county commission.
The property currently has a swimming pool, gym, sauna and tennis courts, and was donated to the school district by the ITT company prior to the incorporation of the City of Palm Coast in 1999 .
It has since become a burden on the district, making little money for members, but requiring expensive repairs as it ages.
After the district considered closing it to the public several years ago, the most avid users of the facility successfully organized to prevent its closure, and the county commission pledged that the county supports the property with an annual donation of $ 25,000.
The district’s latest plan, Peacock told the board, would be to relocate to the district’s TRAIL program facility, which serves 18 to 22-year-old students with special needs; the Step Up program, which targets students with special needs over the age of 22; the Rise Up alternative education program; and the virtual school program called iFlagler, which currently has 325 students.
These changes would make the facility eligible for additional state funding while also opening student stations at Matanzas High School and Indian Trails Middle School, where these programs are currently hosted, Peacock said.
A gym building next to the pool could be reworked to accommodate gym equipment for all ages, or could be used for senior programs with crafts, games and tech classes, a said Peacock.
“Some of these activities, all of these activities, none of these activities – it’s a work in progress with our board of directors,” Peacock said. “They work on finances and things of that nature.”
County commissioners have not expressed objections to the details of the proposal, but Commissioner Andy Dance, a former school board member, said he has seen a lot of changes in school board leadership and is hopeful that the current Belle Terre Swim and Racquet Club proposal will survive. these changes if districts choose to implement them.
“I know it’s quite an investment so hopefully it will see its duration and that they don’t change things with the next leadership,” said Dance.
Peacock has said he intends to carry out the plan.
“I plan to complete it, sir, with everything I have available,” Peacock said.