Speak Out: Public Input Meetings Set On Escambia Superintendent Search

October 21, 2019

The Escambia County School District has scheduled five community forums to give the public the chance to share their input as the school district moves closer to advertising the school superintendent job.

All five of the meetings are in the geographic southern half of Escambia County.

The community forms will be facilitated by the Florida School Boards Association Search Team. All input gathered during the events will be collected and provided to the Escambia County School Board members and will be made available online. School board members will not attend the input sessions.

“The board members and I want to make this process as transparent as possible. The search team will lead the participants through conversations that will help us identify our school district’s strengths and weaknesses, and allow them to have a chance to tell us what skills should be present in the next superintendent,” said Patty Hightower, school board chair. “Our search team consists of professional educators from around the state who have helped other districts through this process, and they too believe these meetings are critically important. We hope everyone with an interest in Escambia County’s public schools will attend at least one of the community input sessions that fits their schedule.”

The town hall events will be held:

  • Oct. 24, 2019 at 5:30 p.m. in Room 160 of the J.E. Hall Center, 30 E. Texar Drive, Pensacola.
  • Nov. 14, 2019 at 6 p.m. in the cafeteria at Blue Angels Elementary School, 1551 Dogtrack Road, Pensacola.
  • Nov. 21, 2019 at 6 p.m. in the cafeteria at Pensacola High School, 500 W. Maxwell Street, Pensacola.
  • Jan. 7, 2020 at 6 p.m. in the cafeteria at Beulah Middle School, 6001 W. Nine Mile Road, Pensacola.
  • Jan. 9, 2020 at 6 p.m. in the cafeteria at Tate High School, 1771 Tate Road, Cantonment.

In 2018, voters approved an appointed, rather than elected, superintendent in Escambia County. The search is being guided by the Florida School Boards Association leading up the selection of a superintendent with a November 24, 2020, start date. The job is set to be advertised beginning April 1, 2020.


17 Responses to “Speak Out: Public Input Meetings Set On Escambia Superintendent Search”

  1. Ernest Ward Student on October 25th, 2019 2:40 pm

    I really don’t agree that the North End of Escambia County doesn’t get a input, Like what about Ernest Ward or Northview?

  2. Karen on October 24th, 2019 3:45 pm

    @ North End Flash – what makes you think it won’t be a woman appointed as Superintendent?

  3. CM on October 21st, 2019 9:51 pm

    Why are meetings even being held? The citizens GAVE UP THEIR RIGHT during the last election for voting on a PROPER SUPERINTENDENT to lead the educationsl system of ESCAMBIA COUNTY.

  4. PamStewart on October 21st, 2019 7:39 pm

    As usual, the north end has been excluded.

  5. BIG JOHN on October 21st, 2019 5:41 pm


  6. Joe the plumber on October 21st, 2019 5:38 pm

    I would hope the citizens of the north end would call their representative school board member of the north end of Escambia County and ask why there is not a meeting at Northview High School or Ernest Ward Middle School? It seems to me that Tate is not necessarily the north end ……just my 2 cents…

  7. JBS on October 21st, 2019 4:21 pm

    Cancel at either JE Hall or Pensacola High and schedule at Ernest Ward, Molino Park or Northview! William, please tell us who has the authority to make this requested change?

  8. thetruth on October 21st, 2019 2:57 pm

    To the people who keep saying that we have given away our right to vote. Tell me how does one get elected to the school board ? And who actually knows what is going on in the school district on a daily basis , the school board or the common citizen ? If you really understood what goes on in our schools you would be shocked. Call a teacher and ask them.

  9. Donna Danley on October 21st, 2019 2:17 pm

    People need to realize that when we give others the right to decide, we fore go our own rights. Malcolm Thomas has done a wonderful job as Superintendent. I would venture to say that the elected person will not attend the funeral of a teacher’s family as I have witnessed Mr. Thomas do on several occasions. People may not always agree on his decisions but neither did my children agree on my decisions when raising them. Mr. Thomas has the broader picture in mind. As we trust government to make our decisions for us we will lose.

  10. Howie on October 21st, 2019 1:48 pm

    My wife and I were shocked when the election returns finalized. We are disappointed that voters have chosen to appoint a School Superintendent. Malcolm Thomas has done a fine job and we need more like him.

    The town hall events should include North Escambia County. Their input is important also. More people in North Escambia should contact the School District about scheduling a meeting for you. It’s wrong to leave you people out, and I’m for doing the right thing.

  11. North end Flash on October 21st, 2019 11:54 am

    Why are there no meetings in the NORTH end of the County. See we don’t count, again no in put on this search, unless we drive thirty miles or more to a meeting at Tate and don’t know the layout of the school, how far we have to walk to get to the meeting, etc.

    I hope all that voted for this new way of getting a Supertendent has plenty of money to pay for all that is to come, flying people in for interviews, rooms for them to say over night…then go through all again for second interviews…then moving expenses…etc., keeps adding up. Wife doesn’t like it here after a few months, all over again. Hope everyone is happy and have deep pockets

    Malcolm Thomas a local man, has been one of the best Supertendent we have had in along time. GREAT JOB MR. THOMAS.

  12. me on October 21st, 2019 11:40 am

    Ref: “All five of the meetings are in the geographic southern half of Escambia County.
    I don’t live north of Tate High School, but if I did I would not be happy with the fact that not one of these meetings is being held in the north end of Escambia County!!!! How inconsiderate for those residents!!
    And, I agree with Concerned citizen that the position should be elected & voted
    that way.

  13. What on October 21st, 2019 11:24 am

    I guess the peoples opinion of the north end of the county do not matter.☹

  14. John Doe on October 21st, 2019 10:51 am

    @concerned citizen I trust the school board more than I do the average Escambia County voter, when it comes to giving my child an unbiased education that is rooted around STEM.

  15. Jennifer Barraclough on October 21st, 2019 9:35 am

    I find it very disappointing that the voters of Escambia County approved this. Having lived in an area with an appointed superintendent I know what a disaster this Choice can be.. I personally feel you should never give up your right to vote and have your voice heard. In time Escambia County voters will realize what a mistake this was. Now I have to trust five people, to choose a person to run my school district.

  16. Cindy on October 21st, 2019 9:35 am

    @ Concerned citizen
    I said the same thing when the election results came in. I wondered if people even read what they voted “yes” on. People need to realize the more choices they give away, the closer they are to having EVERYTHING decided for them.

  17. Concerned citizen on October 21st, 2019 7:49 am

    Why would the citizens of Escambia County take this decision out of their own hands? You just lost the right to decide who will oversee your children’s education. You just gave that decision to a group of people that will seek someone to fulfill their agenda not yours. Would you want the Sheriff’s position appointed? I know I wouldn’t. All public positions of authority should be voted for by its citizens. Malcolm Thomas has done a great job.

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