Welcome to Our School

At Powell Middle School, we strive to strengthen and foster well-rounded individuals. Our students experience a vibrant collection of quality courses including advanced, Pre-AP, STEM, and CTE classes as well as a variety of award-winning Perfoming Arts programs. Whether it is through our highly rated dance, chorus, and band programs or our exceptional Tae Kwon Do classes we are proud to be a school known for creating pathways for students to discover hidden talents or nurture individual expression.

Panther Pride is more than wearing our school colors. It is a culture developed through shared experiences. While our priority is ensuring our students experience academic success, as a school family, we believe we are stronger because we create opportunities to gather to celebrate success and encourage each other and to have fun. Due to our outstanding staff, students and parents, Powell is a B-rated school. Because we work together to balance hard work and self-discipline with curiosity and joy, we are a great school to be part of. Join us and be inspired as we strive to get our "A" back.

Fun Facts

Powell Middle School opened in 1984 under the leadership of its first principal, Mr. Ken Bonfield.  The school's original mascot was the Explorers and the colors were Black and Silver.  Mr. Cy Wingrove became the Principal in 1986 and he lead the school for 17 years until his retirement in June of 2003.  Mr. Mike Ransaw followed as the schools next principal in 2003-2004 where the mascot was changed from the Explorers to the Panthers.  The school colors were also changed that year to Black and Red.  Mr. Earl Deen was the schools next principal followed by Mr. Dave Dannemiller, Mrs. Jamie Young, Mrs. Lisa Cropley, Mr. Tom Dye and the present principal is Mrs. Alex Rastatter.
Powell Middle school is a “B” rated school and currently has a staff of 90 individuals and an enrollment of right around 1000 students. Several staff members have extended ties to the school as they attended Powell as Middle School students. These teachers include, Mrs. Toni Pastore, Mr. Ross McCarthy, Mrs. Nicole Turner LaRiviere, Mr. Derek LaRiviere and Mrs. Alex Rastatter. The school has had several students go on to perform on Broadway, play major league baseball, compete in the Olympics (winning a Track and Field World Championship), and play in the National Football League.  Mr. Zack Poholek, aka Zack James, was a member of 30 Rock, played in the Adams Family on Broadway and toured Europe performing in Phillip Glass Musical. Mr. PJ DiGaetano performed in CATS on Broadway National Tour Star! He played the lead role of Mr. Mistoffelees.  Boston Red Sox second baseman Christian Arroyo, Track and Field star John Capel, and Miami Dolphin running back Matt Breida all attended Powell Middle School.  
Current Physical Education teacher, Charlene Francisco, received the Coordinator of the year in 2008 for the American Alliance of Health Physical Recreation and Dance. She has been working over the past 17 years to help Powell Middle School raise over $50,000.00 for the American Heart Association.
The school currently has fourteen staff members that have earned advanced degrees and we are thankful and appreciative to the three staff members who served our wonderful country in the armed forces prior to joining our staff.


"I went to Powell for all three of my middle school years in the late 1980's.  I played sports, I was a member of the honor society and I had some of the most memorable times as a child.  Coming to work at Powell was one of the best decisions I have made in my teaching career because I would love for my students to have the opportunity to enjoy their years here like I did."       
  ~ Nikki LaRiviere


"I love working at the school that I attended as a student. I met my husband at this school and both of our kids have gone here. This is a great school with a lot of amazing educators that we passionate about what they do. "   
  ~ Alex Rastatter


“I went to Powell in the late 90s. In 2014 I accepted a position at Powell, and it was great coming back to see a few familiar faces from when I went here.  A lot of things have changed over the years at Powell, and everyone feels like family. The Athletics and Performing Arts Programs have been very rewarding and impactful with our students academically and personally. Go Panthers!!”          
  ~ Toni Pastore  


“I have been a teacher and coach at Powell Middle School since 2006. The school culture is what has kept me here for almost 20 years. I enjoy coming to work every day because of the wonderful memories I have created with my colleagues and students. Our athletic program is one of the most successful programs in Hernando County. I hope to be a proud Panther for life.”                
  ~ Coach Jason Dixon 


“Returning to work at Powell Middle School is a nostalgic experience. Walking through the familiar hallways (which have not changed in twenty-five years) helped jogged my mind to countless middle school experiences. It really is a full circle moment. I now get the chance to lead a new generation of Panthers, including my own son. I am grateful for this opportunity and continuing the journey. Go Panthers!”     
  ~ Alan Napier

Alex Rastatter, Principal