Academy of Fire and Emergency Medical Services

  • The cadets of this academy are introduced to healthcare and public safety which allows for training as both an Emergency Medical Responder and Firefighter. While attending this academy, they will be enrolled in Firefighting 1, 2, and 3. In addition to gaining these basic firefighting skills, students will also obtain knowledge about CPR, patient assessment, and first aid through the Health Science curriculum. Cadets in their senior year have the opportunity to dual enroll in Santa Fe Colleges’ EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) program.

    The summer following their senior year, students will finish earning their Florida State Firefighter I certification by completing the final live burn scenarios and be eligible for state certification. This is done during the summer following their senior year because students must be 18 years old to participate in the live burn.

    Magnet Application Information

    Applications for the 2024-2025 school year will open on January 16, 2024 and close at 4:00 p.m. on February 13, 2024.  You must have the application completed by 4:00 on that day in order to be considered for the first round of review.  Any applications after that time will be processed as a late application.  The link to the application will be on the district’s magnet website (  The open house schedule, as well as links to each program are also on that site. 

    If you have program specific questions, please contact us at the school.  For general questions, please contact the district magnet office by emailing or by calling 352-955-7121.


    • 2024-2025 ACPS Magnet Information - Applications open January 16, 2024 and close February 13, 2024.
    • Our 2024 Open House is Thursday, January 18, 2024 from 6 PM to 8:00 PM. See you then!


    Application Requirements

    • Please visit the CTE Application Website for dates and other important information.
    • The minimum requirement is a 2.5 GPA, no more than 10 unexcused absences, discipline including current and prior school year: no "major" referrals and no more than 4 out-of-school suspension days.  
    • Essay Required: All high school applicants will answer one short answer response prompt (300 words or less): "Describe in detail something you are passionate about or something that motivates you."

Academy of Fire and EMS


    Firefighting class training.

    What Will I Learn?  

    As a cadet of Chief Smiths, you will learn the necessary skills to be efficient in fire, EMS, and communications because "one day someone's life may depend on them."

    CTE Curriculum Tracts

    The Academy of Fire & EMS offers three CTE tracts; Firefighting, Emergency Medical Responder (EMR), and Public Safety Telecommunicator. Completion of the Firefighting and EMR tracts is required with few exceptions. All three tracts have the potential for earning industry certifications if students prove proficiency.

    EMR (Emergency Medical Responder)

    Health science 1 & 2 are prerequisites for EMR

    • Health Science 1 - Anatomy & Physiology
    • Health Science 2 - Health Foundations
    • Emergency Medical Responder

    FIRE (State of Florida Firefighter 1)

    • Firefighting 1
    • Firefighting 2
    • Firefighting 3

    PST (Public Safety Telecommunicator)

    • PST 1 (Dispatcher: Police, Fire, Medical 1)
    • PST 2 (Dispatcher: Police, Fire, Medical 2)

Phone: 352-955-6839


Degrees and Certifications:

B.S. Education (Fire Science/Industrial Safety) Florida Firefighter Minimum Standards Emergency Medical Technician Fire Instructor III CPR Instructor Executive Fire Officer, National Fire Academy

Chief Mark Smith


Chief Smith has over 30 years of experience in the fire service industry. He started his career in 1989 at the University of Maryland, where he lived in a fire station as a student. Since relocating to Florida, he has served with Alacua County Fire Rescue, Gainesville Fire Rescue and with the University of Florida. While being a public servant to Alachua County, Chief Smith was the county Fire Marshal for 11 years. He joined our academy in 2016 and still serves in the industry with both High Springs and Bronson Fire Departments.

Chief Smith is married with three children who are all graduates of the Alachua County Public School System. Two of his children are Eastside IB alumni and one is a Bucholz High School alumni. One is a recent graduate from the University of Florida, one is attending the University of Florida and will be graduating in 2023, and one is attending Arizona State University and will be graduating in 2025.


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