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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Elia's Evaluation: Above Satisfactory (Mostly)



EliasmHillsborough Superintendent MaryEllen Elia is due to receive her annual evaluation at tonight's School Board meeting. By and large, she can expect glowing kudos from most of her bosses on the Board.

But not all. Board members April Griffin and Susan Valdes generally gave Elia low to average marks.

Elia's "above satisfactory" overall ranking is reflected in her raise of $16,413. Under her contract, she received the same percentage increase as teachers, bringing her base salary to $252,913.

"Mrs. Elia is being recognized across the nation as an up and coming leader in education," Board member Carol Kurdell wrote of the superintendent, who is wrapping up her second year on the job.

But the praise is not unanimous. Griffin had some scathing criticisms:

* On organizational management: "MaryEllen tends to promote her own vision (and that of her closest advisors) at the expense of the Board and her employees."

* On communications and community relations: "The district has clearly stumbled from one communications issue right into the next," Griffin writes, citing the controversies over the 6/7 plan for high school teachers and the long-running debates over the school calendar and club activities.

Elia received her highest reviews in the area of instructional leadership (Even Griffin gave her a four on the one-to-five scale.) Her lowest scores were in communications and human resource management.

Elia received her best score from Board member Jennifer Faliero, who gave the superintendent a near perfect evaluation. When it came to areas of improvement, Faliero offered two sentences: "Communications with Board on long term goals. Get some rest."

Board member Candy Olson gave the superintendent strong marks, but also wrote a long critique noting the need to recognize "that the incessant emphasis on the FCAT is leading to fatigue and demoralization in many places." She stressed that communications can be improved, as well as board/staff relations.

Read the superintendent's evaluation here. And let us know how you would grade her.

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:21am]


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