With a population of 2,300 students, Plantation High School is like a small town, except most small towns don't have as many options.
Students at the home of the Colonels have a finger-licking good menu of programs, from health sciences to a magnet International Baccalaureate program to a unique, four-year course in aerospace engineering.
"They are learning how to plan something in a project. They'll take their basic science and engineering skills and design it on a computer where they can then 3D print, model it in carbon fiber, and then construct it in the real world," explained engineering teacher Joe Vallone, as student-controlled drones buzzed around him. "The drones are actually part of a learning programming. We have coding classes on campus."
It seems like every high school has a great marching band, and they all sound good, but only Plantation High's Lights Out Drum Line can boast of being the state champions, two years in a row.
"We have band, we have chorus, we have an amazing art program, we also have digital photography on our campus. There is something for everybody on this campus," said Principal Alona DiPaolo.
DiPaolo points with pride at her school's agriscience program. Students are growing tilapia in tanks, and using the fish waste to fertilize a hothouse garden of vegetables. Tomatoes, peppers, lettuce and more is cultivated on campus, and the veggies are then used in the school's culinary program and also fed to the critters in the veterinary care class. The kids take care of turtles, snakes, rabbits, and even a tegu lizard. What are the benefits of the program?
"Infinite career opportunities working with the environment," explained Robert Capps, the school's long-time agriscience teacher. "Food production, veterinary science, landscape design, environmental science, environmental law. I've put people in all those careers."
Students learn to take care of humans in the health sciences program, which is a gateway to careers in the health care industry.
The school has all of the AP classes you would expect from a traditional, full-service high school, along with dual enrollment classes as well as a full roster of sports teams.