Education

Citing success in ‘hard times,’ Miami-Dade School Board sticks with same leadership

Miami-Dade Superintendent Alberto Carvalho wins urban educator award in Baltimore

Miami-Dade Superintendent Alberto Carvalho was named the 2018 recipient of the Green-Garner award, the nation's highest urban education honor, Thursday night in Baltimore. Carvalho will receive $10,000 in college scholarships for Miami-Dade students.
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Miami-Dade Superintendent Alberto Carvalho was named the 2018 recipient of the Green-Garner award, the nation's highest urban education honor, Thursday night in Baltimore. Carvalho will receive $10,000 in college scholarships for Miami-Dade students.

Satisfied with how things are going in the school district, the Miami-Dade County School Board stuck to the status quo and re-elected its chair and vice chair Tuesday.

Board members Perla Tabares Hantman and Martin Karp will once again lead the nine-member board of the nation’s fourth largest school district. This is Hantman’s 11th term as chair since she was elected in 1996. Karp served in 2006, 2012 and 2017.

Hantman’s election as chair was instant, netting three nominations from board members and just one round of voting. Six board members voted for her, two voted for Karp and one voted for Marta Perez.

Board member Mari Tere Rojas was the first to make a nomination. She said she picked Hantman because she led the board through “hard times.”

“I feel she has done an exemplary job,” Rojas said. Board member Lubby Navarro nominated Hantman for the same reasons, she said.

As in past years, a few board members protested keeping the same leadership. Beyond presiding over board meetings, board chairs may appoint board members to committees and execute agreements.

Looking to shake things up, Marta Perez nominated Karp as chair.

“I feel it appropriate to rotate the chair,” she said.

The selection of vice chair took three rounds to decide. Board members were split between re-electing Karp and voting for Steve Gallon, one of two of the newest board members elected in 2016.

After both votes, Rojas moved to make the votes for chair and vice chair unanimous, which failed. Perez was against that motion.

Hantman thanked board members for her re-election, calling the appointment of chair the “greatest honor.”

“We have the responsibility to improve the education of our students,” she said. “History has shown that when we work together and unite our efforts the district and the students have achieved great success.”

The school board recently celebrated the overwhelming voter-approved passage of a four-year property tax hike benefiting teachers and school police officers. The referendum is expected to net $232 million in its first year.

“I serve the board, and the board are my bosses,” Hantman said. “To me, all of you are my special friends and I consider you my family and I know we can work together.”

Contact Colleen Wright at 305-376-3003 and @Colleen_Wright.
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