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Still no career education director for Pasco schools

The past department head was removed over several performance concerns.
Wendell Krinn Technical High School in Pasco County opened in August 2018. The district wants to open an east-side technical high school in 2022. [JEFFREY SOLOCHEK | ]
Published Sep. 17

School districts across Florida have made no secret about their desire to increase career and technical education offerings, as the state aims to focus on getting students better prepared for the world of work in addition to higher learning.

Pasco County district leaders also have this goal in mind. They are seeking to open a new east-side technical high school by 2022, and to revamp and highlight their career academies and industry certification programs.

The district also is still looking for the right person to lead the initiative.

Candidate interviews for the district’s next CTE director — who would be the fourth in five years — are slated to take place this week. An announcement could come by Friday.

Meanwhile, program coordinator Mike Macchiarola is serving as interim administrator.

The most recent director, Keiva Wiley, lasted only about a year in the post. Her final day with the district was Friday, after she did not accept a different job in the system following superintendent Kurt Browning’s decision not to keep her in charge of the department.

An early August memo from chief academic officer Vanessa Hilton to Wiley detailed the concerns with Wiley’s performance.

Hilton wrote that Wiley did not have effective communication with school principals or community business leaders. That situation allowed some problems to fester, rather than quickly resolving them.

She also noted that Wiley did not improve her leadership strategies, despite discussions on how to do so and pledges to do better.

“While I have provided direct support to you, at least monthly, and sometimes weekly, I continue to have many of the same concerns I shared with you in February,” Hilton wrote to Wiley, shortly before the decision to remove her. “There is an increase in attention and focus on CTE, and there is much work to do in order to change the current perceptions of your leadership and your department due to these concerns.”

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