Breaking News
More () »

Jacksonville's Leading Local News: Weather, Traffic, Sports and more | Jacksonville, Florida | FirstCoastNews.com

Parents excited for new St. Johns County high school close to home

One parent says the new high school, expected to be finished in 2021, will cut down what could have been a 30 to 40 minute commute to Nease High School.

A new high school is coming to St. Johns County in the 2021 school year and is expected to help alleviate crowding at two of the district’s biggest high schools.

The school will be built along International Golf Parkway near State Road 16. The empty lot next to Mill Creek Academy is the site of the upcoming school.

The site is close to resident Jenn Leonard and her 11-year-old son.

“We know it’s going to be new, clean, with state of the art technology," Leonard said, "and it’ll be built up to the new security standards for schools in the district, which is pretty important.”

Leonard works with the St. Augustine Moms Blog.

She lives near the intersection of International Golf Parkway and SR-16. Her son, who is currently in middle school, is zoned for Nease High School. She thinks it’s a good school but one that’s crowded and far away.

“With a 40-minute drive, even if there are athletics or clubs, kids aren’t getting home until 5 p.m. or 6 p.m. which is late,” Leonard said.

The St. Johns County School District says this will reduce the sizes of Nease High School and Bartram Trail High Schools. The district estimates those schools have nearly 3,000 students each. The new high school will be built to hold 2,100 students.

Leonard says she would have liked for her son to go to Nease but she feels a new school opens up new opportunities for her family and many others.

“We moved here for the schools in St. Johns County, so obviously we expect other families to be moving here," Leonard said. "So it’s nice to have an option other than the existing schools."

The school district says they are hoping the school will be open for the 2021-2022 school year.

Next week, St. Johns County commissioners will formally discuss adding more land to the property.