The Clewiston News

School District plans for pre-school in Montura

Preliminary plans are being drawn to possibly open a preschool in the Montura Ranch area.

Though no formal plans have been drawn up, the Hendry County School District has been in talks with Central County Water Control District to set aside a piece of land near the Montura Ranch Clubhouse to house the preschool program.

Superintendent Paul Puletti said the district hopes to place modulars on the designated land.

“Central County has given us a tentative nod that they would be interested to proceed with that kind of program in Montura. But we still have a lot of work to do to make it happen. At least we’re taking the first few steps,” said Puletti.

The district, as well as residents, have indicated a need for a preschool in the Montura area in the past since residents are forced to travel to nearby Clewiston for such programs.

Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten, or VPK, is completely free to four year olds in the state of Florida. But traveling to and from Montura Ranch to get to the nearest program can add costs and stress to families and can even act as a hindrance to participation.

According to Puletti, the pre-school could be opened by next school year if it is approved.

However, not all residents are excited about the prospect of a preschool being opened in the Montura area. At least one resident, Pastor James Herrmann, said he worried taxes would be raised because of the school’s opening and expressed concern that the Central County board approved the piece of land without holding a public meeting.

A flyer distributed by a community organization in Montura, C-COM, on July 14 indicated the Central County board had “approved a possible future site for two structures.”

Board Chairman Bruno Naranjo clarified at the July 24 meeting that the board had not yet approved the piece of land.