The Village Center Community Development District is going to save the Village Lifelong Learning College, but it is going to take a little time.
An overflow crowd of Villagers crammed into the District Office on Wednesday afternoon, eager to learn if the Lifelong Learning College would be resurrected after it had been shut down Dec. 31.
“I think it’s a good news story,” said District Manager Janet Tutt.
It was not a decision taken lightly, she said.
District staff have pored over the VLLC’s books and have determined that it is fiduciarily feasible for the District to take on the operation.
Tutt said a major part of the decision hinged on whether the District could carry on with the expected level of quality.
“I believe we can,” she said.
She said the Lifelong Learning College would not be funded with amenity fees. Rather, the VCCDD would establish an Enterprise Fund that would charge fees of the users.
The bulk of the resurrection of the Lifelong Learning College will fall on the Recreation Department.
John Rohan, head of the Recreation Department, said his department “many years ago” had offered enrichment programs that were eventually taken over by the Lifelong Learning College. He said it was not uncharted water.
However, he said it would take time to evaluate everything from staffing to equipment needs.
Rohan predicted that registration for the next set of classes could take place in August and September. Classes could begin in October.
Some Villagers had questions about how the District could accommodate the Americans with Disabilities Act demands.
“The programs will be sponsored by the District and will be subject to ADA requirements,” Tutt said.
The Lifelong Learning College likely will physically continue in The Villages’ many recreation centers which were already home to some of the previous classes. However, Tutt indicated the District would inquire about use of space at the Charter School.