The John Carroll High School courtyard after the Courtyard Beautification Project.
Credit: John Carroll High School

FORT PIERCE — The John Carroll High School courtyard – the heart of campus – suffered the loss of its beautiful oak trees due to damage from Hurricane Irma. The school partnered with the University of Florida (UF)/IFAS Extension of St. Lucie County and the John Carroll community of parents, alumni and supporters to make the space inviting again, as many students and alumni have vivid courtyard memories.

The school launched the Courtyard Beautification Project to raise funds for the materials needed to revitalize the space. Options included donating $10 for two bags of mulch, $20 for a plant, $50 towards pavilion and bench repair, and $100 to purchase a tree via the online campaign. Over $3,800 was raised within two weeks.

John Carroll Alumna and UF/IFAS Urban Horticulture Agent Kate Rotindo and UF/IFAS Education and Outreach Coordinator Kate O’Neill helped John Carroll create a plan to replant the beds with native and Florida friendly plants and trees.

Volunteers gathered in the courtyard on Saturday, Aug. 11 with Rotindo and O’Neill to complete Phase One of the project. Phase Two includes a possible sunsail over the main pavilion to provide shade for students. John Carroll is currently accepting donations for Phase Two.

“We truly cannot thank our gracious donors, community, volunteers, and Kate Rotindo and Kate O’Neill with UF/IFAS for supporting the Courtyard Beautification Project,” said Corey Heroux, John Carroll High School principal. “Their donations and volunteer efforts will support the fostering of memories in the courtyard for all students.”

Visit or call 772-464-5200 for more information about John Carroll High School. “Like” John Carroll on Facebook, follow on Twitter @JohnCarrollHS and follow on Instagram @johncarrollhighschool.

This article was distributed through Treasure Coast Business, a news service for the readers and advertisers of Indian River Magazine.