Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Board appoints new principal at school where girl drowned

TAMPA — A new principal has been appointed to run the school where lax supervision led to a student drowning in a nearby pond last year.

In a move approved Tuesday by the Hillsborough County School Board, Michael Miranda will be the new principal of Rodgers Middle School, effective March 4.

Miranda, now principal of Progress Village Middle School, replaces Sharon Tumicki, who was demoted and reassigned in the aftermath of the drowning in October.

Jennifer Caballero, 11, was a student with Down syndrome who wandered away from a crowded physical education class. Her body was recovered that evening in a retention pond behind the media center.

In a school district investigation, Tumicki was criticized for not knowing written emergency procedures and not taking action when she learned that exceptional student education aides were not engaging with the students during gym class. Some of the aides told investigators they had little or no emergency training.

Jennifer's death and that of special-needs student Isabella Herrera resulted in a districtwide effort to improve safety in exceptional student education. Two ESE aides and an assistant principal were dismissed at Rodgers as well. Miranda, 44, joined the district in 1991.

Also Tuesday, the school board named Matthew DiPrima, currently assistant principal of Bartels Middle School, as principal of Burns Middle School.

Board appoints new principal at school where girl drowned 02/19/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 19, 2013 11:49pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Winner and loser of the week in Florida politics


    Winner of the week 1: 'Liquor wall’ proponents. Gov. Rick Scott’s veto of a bill to allow Walmart, Target and other big box stores to sell liquor was a victory for an array of groups, from smaller merchants and Publix (which has stand-alone booze shops near its stores) to those who feel the hard stuff …

  2. Review / photos: Sunset Music Festival brings Major Lazer, safety upgrades to Raymond James Stadium in Tampa


    Somewhere beyond the barricades and mountainous LED stages of the Sunset Music Festival, there had to be worry. There had to thousands of parents in parking lots and empty kitchens, anxiously distracting their minds, every now and then checking their phones.

    Major Lazer headlined the Sunset Music Festival on May 27, 2017 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa.
  3. 24-year-old man charged with murder in shooting at Andrea Cove Motel

    LARGO — Pinellas sheriff's officers arrested a 24-year-old transient man Saturday in connection with a homicide at the Andrea Cove Motel in unincorporated Largo.

  4. Photo gallery: Calvary Christian rolls to state title


    View a gallery of images from Calvary Christian's defeat of Pensacola Catholic 11-1 in six innings Saturday night at Hammond Stadium in Ft. Myers for the Class 4A title.

    Calvary Christian players circle up on the field before the FHSAA class 4A baseball championship against Pensacola Catholic on Friday May 27, 2017 at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers, Fla. Calvary scored 6 runs in the first inning, and had 7 hits.
  5. Two girls found safe after being reported missing in New Port Richey

    UPDATE: Both girls were found safe Saturday night, police said.