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Fire Academy

The Fire Leadership program of study initially became available to students in January 2017 with an inaugural class of 50 students. This program of study has continued to grow, filling to capacity each year. Interested students must enroll in the program as freshmen. In order to complete the entire program, students must begin their freshman year and remain in the academy through their senior year.

The lead instructor for the Fire Leadership program of study is a state certified firefighter and a certified Florida State Fire College instructor. Coursework focuses on leadership development, preparing students with skills including but not limited to: fire behavior; first responder model; personal protective equipment; use of ropes, tools, and equipment; use of fire streams; and the fundamentals of extinguishment and rescue procedures.

Students are taught the history, equipment, and specialties in fire service and become CPR certified. Clear career pathways are explored including firefighter certifications, EMT coursework, associate degrees, paramedic training programs, and bachelor’s degree programs.


The Fire Leadership Program accepts only incoming 9th grade students. Incoming 9th graders who are interested in applying, should select the course on their course selection sheets, and submit an online application using the Program Choice Application.

If you are an incoming 10th grade student please contact Andrew Hardesty, or your FPC guidance counselor for more information.

FPCHS students who are currently enrolled in the Fire Leadership Program do not need to reapply.


As students complete program coursework, they will also be completing State Fire College components. Students  will become certified in CPR, and as Emergency Medical Responders (EMR). Upon graduation, students will complete a short IDLH course through Flagler County Fire Rescue and then sit for the state fire exam. State law requires students to be 18 in order to complete the IDLH course and state exam.

Seniors in the program will also have the opportunity to dual enroll at Flagler Technical College in order to complete the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) program. Upon graduation, Fire Leadership students will be state certified firefighters and certified EMTs.

Community Partners

The FPCHS Fire Leadership program of study is a joint effort between Flagler Schools and our local fire municipalities: Flagler County Fire Rescue, The City of Palm Coast Fire Department, and the City of Flagler Beach Fire Department. Without their input and support this academy would not be possible. The Flagler County Economic Development Board has determined that fire and medical is a high-need employment area within Flagler County. The goal of the FPCHS Fire Leadership program of study is to graduate job-ready firefighters and EMTs who will be fully trained to work and live in Flagler County.

Flagler County Fire and Rescue welcomes all current FPCHS Fire Leadership Program students to visit any one of their fire houses at any time. This is a great opportunity for students to see what life is like for a firefighter while also building their professional network.

The City of Palm Coast Fire Department has a Ride-Along Program that our current FPCHS Fire Leadership Program students may participate in. Students who choose to participate in this program get to experience life at a firehouse firsthand and even get to ride along with the firefighters when answering calls. This program takes place after school hours and requires a permission slip from the City of Palm Coast Fire Department. 

Fire Leadership

About the Program

The Flagler County Fire Rescue Leadership Academy is a cooperative effort between Flagler County Board of County Commissioners (FBOCC) and Flagler County School Board (FCSB). This course is designed to be a four year program in which students start their Freshman year culminating the summer after their Senior year. Students graduate prepared to take state examinations for certification as Firefighter II and Emergency Medical Technician (EMT).

The FCFR Leadership Academy is taught by active Flagler County Fire Department personnel. Students will learn necessary skills through textbook work and scenario based instruction to enhance their overall learning experience.

The FCFR Leadership Academy is equipped with required personal protective equipment, tools and training props to prepare the students for real-life scenarios.

Students Practice Fire FIghting
Students Practice Fire Safety

Course Progression

9th grade:
Medical Skills

10th grade:
Firefighting 1

11th grade:
Firefighting 2

12th grade:
Firefighting 3 and Law/ Public

After Graduation:
3-week summer session and testing

Students Practice Emergency Response


  • Must meet the medical component (EMR) of the course
  • Must be enrolled in the course no later than the beginning of their Sophomore year
  • Maintain a 70% in all courses
  • Follow simple commands
  • Communicate effectively
  • Possess active and empathetic listening skills
  • Manage conversations appropriately
  • Possess appropriate psychomotor skills (i.e tie functional knots, roll and deploy hoses, put gear on properly including in sequential order without prompting)
  • Have a Florida Fire College Physical completed the summer prior to entering the Firefighter 1 course
  • Possess and maintain a moderate to high degree of physical fitness that is appropriate to physicality of the rigors of firefighting (combination of cardio, stamina, strength, and agility)
  • Understand that situations of this training can put candidates in extremely stressful, high heat, various heights, and claustrophobic environments

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there accommodations for testing?
Yes, the written portion of the state test does have similar accommodations that the school offers, but will need to be requested ahead of time to the testing center.

Does the Practical Portion of the test have time accommodations?
No, The state sets times that must be met to perform each practical task.

Is the Palm Coast Junior Firefighter program the same as The FPC Fire Academy?
No, they are two separate programs. The Palm Coast Junior FireFighter program is a program run by the City of Palm Coast Fire Rescue and is used to introduce the youth to the Career of Fire Fighting . The FPCHS Fire Academy is designed to certify the graduates of the program as firefighters in the state of florida as well as enrolling them into becoming a Licensed EMT.

What certifications/Licences are earned at the end of the course? Graduates of the program will be FireFighter 2 certified with the state of Florida (pending candidate testing) as well as becoming a National Registered Emergency Medical Technician. With these two accolades this makes the candidate eligible for a career in firefighting in the state of Florida.

What is the workload of the program?
Each class has a combination of academic class work, homework, quizzes, self study reading assignments and practical performance objectives throughout the year.

Program Opportunities

At the successful completion of the course the student will be eligible to be hired as a professional Firefighter/EMT anywhere in the state of Florida but is given special preference in their application to Flagler County Fire Rescue and Palm Coast Fire Rescue. The graduate is also able to apply in an Emergency Medical Technician Capacity at any accommodating medical facility or transport agency pending their successful passing of the national standards test.