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Nearly a dozen Duval County schools getting new principals

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Updated: 1/14 6:33 pm

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- There's a bit of a shakeup happening inside some Duval County Public Schools. Superintendent Dr. Nikolai Vitti informed a handful of educators Monday night their positions will be changing.

"I think my job is to put the best talent on the field," he said.

In all, 11 schools will get new principals -- most of them are being moved from one school to another.

Here is the full list:

School Name                        New Principal
Andrew Jackson High            Evan Daniels (from Gilbert)
Darnell Cookman                  Carol Daniels (from First Coast)
Finegan Elementary              Alan Due (returning from leave)
First Coast High                    Alvin Brennan (returning to District)
Greenfield Elementary           Todd Simpson (from R.L. Brown)
Highlands Elementary           Jeff Collins (interim principal from Finnegan)
Matthew Gilbert Middle         Jamelle Wilcox (AP from Gilbert)
R.L. Brown Elementary         Kimberly Hayward (from Highlands Elementary)
Ribault Middle                      Angela Maxey (from Sallye Mathis)
Sallye Mathis Elementary     Kathleen Adkins (AP from Carter Woodson)
West Jax Elementary           Michelle Floyd-Hatcher (from Jackson)

"Some of the principal changes have to do with performance. And others just has to do more about putting the right principal in the right school," Vitti said.

Andrew Jackson High will soon have Evan Daniels leading the charge. He had been principal at Matthew Gilbert Middle.

"Evan Daniels is the principal was the principal at Matthew Gilbert. Matthew Gilbert feeds into Jackson so in my mind it was a community strategy in that the kids know Mr. Daniels," said Vitti.

Former students were happy to hear about the principal swaps.

"We can take pride in saying we went here now," said Shanuinka Chapman.

She graduated from Andrew Jackson a few years ago, when the school's grade was an F. She said change is good.

"I think it's an attempt to help the schools. There's no telling what the principal really can bring to the school," she said.

This isn't the first time Vitti has shuffled principals around. In total, he's now made about 50 principal changes in his year and a half with the district.


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MYOPINION76 - 2/11/2014 6:14 PM
0 Votes
I agree Superintendent Vitti is taking bold steps to change the culture of DCPS. Some of the principals should have been shown the door long ago, instead of sitting around collecting a check and letting the teachers and students fail. School violence and crime is still a major issue here at DCPS and while Vitti has funded more security, I still don't see the same level of expertise behind addressing this concern. Throwing more money at the problem doesn't solve it and student misconduct, crime and violence are a major reason why our schools are still struggling. It has to be all or nothing to help all of our schools.

mtthomas - 1/16/2014 11:04 AM
0 Votes
More of the same....And we call this great leadship? Tuesday, June 11, 2013 LaTonya Parker gets the boot Iranetta Wright gets a promotion, what’s wrong with this picture? 5 years ago Iranetta Wright became the principal of Andrew Jackson High School. The school earned an F that year (and in her third year too) and all the FCAT scores dropped from the previous year. Fast forward 5 years and she is now one of the districts 4 area chiefs. What did she have that Latonya Parker of John E. Ford doesn’t have? Mrs. Parker became the principal of John E. Ford this school year and after one year on the job she’s now out. During the public comment session of last nights school board meeting, Robert Slama, a Ford parent, spoke against the School Board removing Parker and he mentioned that 2012-13 was Parker’s first year as Ford principal. His cries went unheeded though. Which begs the question how come Parker didn’t get another year or another three years like Wright did? My bet is friends in high places. Read more at
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