90-student Physical Education class upsets Lake County parents

Lake County schools says overcrowding is only issue at beginning of year

CLERMONT, Fla. - As the school year picks up speed, Lake County parents say overcrowding at one Clermont high school is a big issue.

Parents at East Ridge High School tell Local 6 the school is overcrowded, especially one P.E. class that has 90 students in it-- twice the normal number.

Local 6 spoke to a mother that used to have two kids at the school. She says the overcrowding was so bad she moved them to another high school.

"We pulled him out last year but there was a lot of kids in P.E. last year, there were a lot of kids in the school period," the mother said. "It's hard to be patient when your children's education is at risk because there's so many kids."

But district spokesperson Chris Patton says the overcrowding happens at the beginning of every year school year, as the county works to figure out student enrollment.

"We wait that first 10 days until enrollment settles out and then we make the necessary adjust, the last thing we want to do is hire a teacher and those students aren't there," says Patton.

East Ridge High has the same number of teachers as last year, but 150 more students that the district says they have to put somewhere.

"They stack some of the electives, art, P.E.,," says Patton. "By next week it'll be solved."

But Jana Carlson says she's heard that before.

"Its been like this for the past four years. I've been driving my kids here completely overcrowded, the portables, their overcrowded," says Carlson. "If I could send her somewhere else, I would but there's no where else to send her right now."

The district maintains that they have less students at the school then they've ever had. They say there used to be 3,000 before Lake Minneola High was built a couple years ago and now that number has been reduced to 2,100 students.

The school district says on Friday they will figure out the student populations for each school and then based on those numbers will hire more teachers.

They are hoping to get new teachers hired by the end of next week.

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