Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Duette Elementary opens school year with 16 students and one teacher

Lipman Farms manager Larry Moss joins Duette Elementary School students with their new backpacks. Provided photo

Duette Elementary School, Florida's last one-room, one-teacher school house, reopened this week with 16 students, the same enrollment as last school year.

Founded in 1930, Duette Elementary  actually has more than one room, but since the school has only one teacher, the students are usually in one room together. The school serves kindergarten through fifth grade.

Duette Elementary started as a "strawberry school" to allow children of farm families help bring in crops.

Donna King, the executive director of  Duette Education Foundation, Inc., provided a photo of this year's students with Larry Moss, manager of Lipman Farms, which provided stuffed back packs.

In 2009,  the Manatee School District decided it could not justify keeping the school open. Ever since, the Duette Education Foundation Inc. has been responsible for footing the bills to keep the school operating.

The community of Duette has more than 16 students, but many of them attend  conventional schools around Manatee County.

For more on the opening of  the 2014-2015 school year in Manatee County, see Meghin Delaney's story


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