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Polk County Public Schools is inviting news media to visit one of our brand new schools as students return tomorrow (Tuesday, Aug. 10).

Willow Oak School in Mulberry is one of three new PCPS schools opening for 2021-22. Reporters are welcome to visit the beautiful, modern elementary campus as it welcomes its first class of students on Tuesday.

Principal Michelle Townley will be available for interviews beginning at 6 a.m. PCPS Superintendent Frederick Heid will visit the school and be available for interviews from approximately 6:30 to 7 a.m.

Willow Oak School is located at 4815 Bailey Road in Mulberry. Members of the news media are asked to park near the school at LifePoint Church, 5140 Bailey Road.

As part of COVID-19 safety measures, reporters and photographers will not be permitted to enter the school. A designated area for media will be available in the parking lot at Willow Oak’s entrance. PCPS Public Relations will obtain additional b-roll footage from Willow Oak and make it available to news outlets later on Tuesday.

RSVPs are appreciated for planning purposes. Please email

More info about Willow Oak School and PCPS:

– Willow Oak is one of three new PCPS schools opening this year, along with Davenport High School and Bella Citta Elementary (also in Davenport).

– Willow Oak measures 127,000 square feet and has a capacity for about 1,000 students. The school’s cost was approximately $34 million. Its mascot is the Blue Jay.

– The Willow Oak campus features a maker space lab, art patio, music suite, and a science laboratory. An early childhood learning center is scheduled to open in January.

– The Polk County school district serves more than 100,000 students, including charter school enrollment. PCPS alone (traditional public schools only) has about 90,000 students. We are the seventh-largest school district in Florida and the 26th-largest district in the United States.

– PCPS has approximately 14,000 employees, including 7,000 teachers.

–  PCPS’ transportation fleet includes more than 630 school buses transporting an estimated 57,000 students.

– PCPS’ safety procedures for 2021-22 are available at   

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