Superintendent Announces New Administrative Appointments for the 2020-2021 School Year
Superintendent David Broskie announced several administrative promotions within Clay County District Schools for the 2020-2021 school year. On Thursday, the school board approved the recommendations after each candidate completed comprehensive interviews last month.
“I continue to be amazed by the talent and leadership within our district and beyond. These administrators have proven track records of student success and growth as well as the willingness to take on new challenges. I look forward to the bright future ahead for Clay County District Schools with these leaders at the helm,” said Superintendent David Broskie.
Below are a bio and picture of each administrator and his or her new title.
Treasure Pickett - Director of K-12 Academic Support Services
A 2019 Clay County Principal of the Year, Treasure Pickett earned her bachelor’s degree from Northeast Louisiana University, Master of Education from University of South Carolina, and Ed Leadership certification from the University of North Florida. A Clay County educator for 25 years, Mrs. Pickett started her Florida teaching career at Clay High School before transitioning into administration in 2003 as an Assistant Principal of Orange Park High School. In 2006, she became the Vice Principal of Middleburg High School before returning to Orange Park High School in 2008 as principal and leading the Raiders to an “A” rating for the first time in school history. Finally, in 2015, she became principal at Oakleaf High School and once again led the school to an “A” rating the past two years. Mrs. Pickett was also a member of the 2017-18 Dr. Brian Dassler Leadership Academy and completed the UF Lastinger Certified Instructional Leadership Coaching Program. Her husband Mike is a teacher and soccer coach at St. Johns Country Day School and daughter Carson is a professional soccer player.
Laura Fogarty - Director of Climate and Culture
Laura Fogarty is a distinguished educator with 27 years of experience serving the students and families of Clay County. She graduated from Florida State University with a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education and earned her Master’s degree in educational leadership at the University of North Florida. Mrs. Fogarty taught at Clay Hill Elementary and Lake Asbury Elementary. She has been awarded teacher of the year three times and won the WJXT Master Teacher award. At each of these schools, her leadership skills stood out as she served as the school improvement chairman for both. She would lead each staff to create goals that would transform instruction and develop safe learning environments for all students. After 13 years of teaching, Mrs. Fogarty began her career as an administrator. She was the Assistant Principal at Lake Asbury Elementary and in 2008 she assisted in opening Shadowlawn Elementary as their Assistant Principal. In December of 2011, Mrs. Fogarty was chosen to lead Tynes Elementary as the Principal and has served the Tynes community for the past nine years. While at Tynes, she has initiated community-wide events that brought together over a thousand families to foster stronger relationships with all stakeholders. Mrs. Fogarty’s belief in making a positive impact on all students is evident as she implemented a Social and Emotional Learning Resource class at Tynes. She advocates and supports military-connected students and is the recipient of the Naval Military Liaison Partners in Education Award. Mrs. Fogarty has developed a strong school culture at Tynes Elementary while utilizing her training in Safe and Civil Schools, CHAMPS, and 7 Mindsets.
Both of her children are proud graduates of the Clay County School District. Her son Michael graduated from Middleburg High School 2016 as the salutatorian and her daughter LizAnne graduated from Clay High School early, December 2017. She currently resides in Clay county with her husband Tim..
Jim Fossa - Supervisor of Operations, School Safety and Security
Mr. Fossa is a graduate of Salem State University and Jacksonville University’s Middle Grades Math curriculum, Second Career as a Teacher (SCAT) program. He is a 15-year educator and three sport coach serving both Clay County and the Bolles School. Currently, Mr. Fossa is the District’s Planner and Intergovernmental affairs coordinator. In that role he serves on Clay County’s Planning Commission and Development Review Committee. He is a retired Navy Captain. His last duty station was US Forces Iraq, Baghdad, and second Middle East Deployment. There, he headed two of the four functionalities in the Force Protection Directorate, (Biometrics Chief and Armed Contractor Oversight Branch Chief).
Prior to moving to Clay County, Mr. Fossa was the Park Services Maintenance Manager for Universal Studios, Florida. Duties and responsibilities included daily cleanliness, staff training and equipment procurement for the park, all administrative buildings and four sound stages.
His wife April, retires this year, as a second grade teacher at Doctors Inlet Elementary School. Both children, Robby and Tom are graduates of Fleming Island High School, Green Cove Springs Junior High, and Paterson Elementary School. Mr. Fossa is looking forward to taking on the responsibility of the Safety and Security of our schools.
John Sgromolo - Coordinator of District Athletics and Development
Mr. Sgromolo is a product of the Clay County School System (Paterson Elementary, Green Cove Springs Junior High, Clay High). Following a four year playing career at Flagler College, Mr. Sgromolo was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 2012 MLB Draft. After his professional baseball career, he taught one year at Clay High before joining the team at Ridgeview High School in 2014. In his six years at Ridgeview High School, Mr. Sgromolo was a finalist for Teacher of the Year and has led Ridgeview High School to back to back FHSAA Fred E. Rozelle Sportsmanship Awards. He was also most recently a finalist for the National Athletic Director of the Year from Varsity Brands. Mr. Sgromolo is a creative innovator in the athletic field with sports marketing, business partnerships and student athlete recognition, as well as building a character based interscholastic athletic program.
Mr. Sgromolo earned his Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from Flagler College. He is currently enrolled at The University of Missouri in the Master of Education with a concentration in Athletic Leadership and Positive Coaching cohort. Mr. Sgromolo has also earned the distinction of C.A.A. (Certified Athletic Administrator) from the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association. Mr. Sgromolo currently sits on the FHSAA Representative Assembly, Section 1 Appeals Committee, and is the Florida Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association District 3 Director.
Carolyn Hayward - Principal of Wilkinson Elementary School
Carolyn Hayward is a dynamic instructional leader who started teaching in Clay County at Bannerman Learning Center, first as an EBD/SC teacher, then as a Behavior Site Coach and team leader. During her 18 years at Bannerman Learning Center, she served as the ESE representative during district discipline hearings, pioneered the Community Based Vocational Education (CBVE) program, and developed the structured behavioral support program known as the Success System. Additionally, she was voted Teacher of the Year by her colleagues.
She earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Special Education from the University of South Florida and a Master of Education Degree in Educational Leadership from the University of North Florida. At this time, she is completing her second year as a doctoral candidate in Educational Leadership at the University of North Florida. She is driven to build teacher leaders, and her dissertation is focused on creating teacher credibility and collective efficacy.
In 2015, she was appointed as the Assistant Principal at S. Bryan Jennings Elementary partnering with Tiffany Outman. During this time the school moved from a C to a B. In 2017, she moved to Wilkinson Elementary to serve as Heather Teto’s Assistant Principal. Mrs. Hayward played an integral role in establishing rituals, routines and structures utilizing positive behavioral intervention and supports. These key elements assisted in reducing behavioral incidents by 70 percent. During this time, WES moved from a C to an A in one year, and performance continues to improve.
She has a passion for coaching strong teacher leaders and building a positive school culture. She resides in Clay County with her husband, Mike. Her four children, Justin, Gabrielle, Alexandra and Mikey, are all products of Clay County Schools. She is honored to serve the families of Middleburg as the Principal of Wilkinson Elementary.
Amy Vann - Principal of Thunderbolt Elementary School
Amy Vann has served Clay County District Schools for the past 16 years. Prior to joining Clay County District Schools, she served as a teacher in the Duval County School District for four years. Ms. Vann has proudly served the school communities of W.E. Cherry Elementary, Paterson Elementary, and Plantation Oaks Elementary Schools as an Assistant Principal. Prior to becoming an Assistant Principal, she taught 5th and 6th-grade and also worked as a reading coach.
Ms. Vann earned her Bachelor’s in Education at the University of North Florida and a Master’s in Educational Leadership from Grand Canyon University.
During the 2017 school year, Ms. Vann was part of the administration team at Paterson Elementary that was recognized for having the second-highest increase on both the FSA and FSSA. In 2015, she was recognized as the Outstanding Assistant Principal Achievement Award for Clay County District Schools.
For the last four years, Ms. Vann has been instrumental in supporting building principals in creating positive school climates. These efforts have been recognized by the Superintendent and rewarded with a “Champion of Change” for being in the top 10 percent of all schools based on the Instructional Climate Survey.
Ms. Vann is a driven and motivated instructional leader who is focused on providing the best education for all children. She is excited to lead Thunderbolt Elementary, and she is looking forward to joining a community focused on providing the very best for children.
Melissa Wright - Principal of Grove Park Elementary School
Melissa Wright is Clay County School District’s 2019 Assistant Principal of the Year. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Bethune-Cookman University in Elementary Education, her master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Walden University and her Educational Leadership Certification from University of North Florida.
Mrs. Wright began her educational career in the Putnam County School District in 1999 as a third grade teacher. She joined the Clay County School District in 2001, as a fourth grade teacher at Thunderbolt Elementary School. She spent 11 years teaching and leading within the district as a fourth and fifth grade teacher at Argyle Elementary School and Oakleaf Elementary School. During her 13 years as a classroom teacher, she held a variety of leadership roles at both the school and district level.
In 2012, she served as the District Title I and Title III (ESOL) Professional Development Program Specialist. In this role, she developed workshops and instructional materials, evaluated programs, provided in-service training, coaching and modeling for teachers and ESOL assistants, as well as the preparation and monitoring of compliance of the state guidelines and federal regulations. For the past five years, she has served as the Assistant Principal at Middleburg Elementary School where she was an integral player in helping lead Middleburg Elementary back to an “A” after being a “B” grade for three consecutive years.
Mrs. Wright has been an educator for 21 years and has a special love for the academic and overall wellbeing of each child she encounters. She is dedicated to empowering her teachers through innovative methods to reach all students. She is married to Ricky and they have one daughter, Miayah, who attends St. John’s State College in Orange Park.
Wilnitra Dixon - Principal of Oakleaf Village Elementary School
Wilnitra Dixon is a Florida native who moved to Clay County in 2003 to serve as an educator for Clay County District Schools. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Social Science from Florida State University and a Master’s in Educational Leadership from the University of North Florida. Ms. Dixon has a passion for establishing positive learning environments that challenge students while encouraging and supporting teachers through continuous professional development to enhance quality instruction.
Ms. Dixon has served as a teacher at Green Cove Springs Junior High and Thunderbolt Elementary. While at Thunderbolt Elementary, she was nominated as the 2013 Teacher of the Year. In 2014, she transitioned from the classroom to serve Thunderbolt Elementary as an Assistant Principal for five years prior to joining Argyle Elementary, where she currently serves as the Assistant Principal. Ms. Dixon looks forward to serving the Oakleaf Village Elementary community.
Melissa Metz - Principal of Coppergate School of the Arts
Mrs. Metz has a Bachelor of Arts in Special Education and a Master of Education in Educational Leadership. Mrs. Metz has 16 years of educational experience working in a variety of capacities in Duval County Public Schools. She was a classroom teacher for seven years at the elementary and high school levels. From there, she was a reading coach at the elementary and middle school levels before becoming a district literacy specialist. Administratively, Mrs. Metz has six years of experience; three of which have been as an elementary school principal. In 2019, she moved Chimney Lakes Elementary School (Title I) from a B to an A, making CLE a Florida School of Excellence. That same year under her leadership, Chimney Lakes also received prestigious national recognition as a Magnet School of Distinction for International Cultural Studies, a yearly award presented by Magnet Schools of America.
Mrs. Metz is a collaborative leader and believes in empowering teachers to create an environment in which all students can succeed. She brings a passion and strong background for the performing arts with over 30 years of classical dance and vocal training and was also a member of the Roar for the Jaguars from 2003-2008. Mrs. Metz is excited to serve as the new principal at Coppergate School of the Arts and provide students the opportunity to excel academically while fostering and encouraging a passion for the arts. She has been married to her husband, John, for almost 13 years and they have a five-year-old son, Patrick, who is looking forward to starting kindergarten in the fall.
Sarah Brennan - Principal of Tynes Elementary School
Sarah Brennan is a veteran educator with 26 years of experience spanning kindergarten through post-secondary instruction. After graduating from Dartmouth College with a Bachelor of Arts in history, she returned to her hometown of Baltimore to teach in a Title 1 middle school while she pursued her Masters in Special Education. Sarah has served a broad range of communities in Maryland and Pennsylvania, both school-based and district level ESE roles.
Since relocating to Clay County in 2006, Ms. Brennan worked in the classroom as a member of the inaugural faculty of Oakleaf K-8 and as an ESE inclusion teacher at Thunderbolt Elementary. In 2014, Ms. Brennan moved into the district’s Human Resources department as a SPRINT teacher specialist. In that role, she taught education courses at the University of North Florida and mentored novice educators from a variety of teacher preparation programs. Upon completion of her Masters of Educational Leadership from the University of West Florida, she joined the administrative team at Paterson Elementary School. During her three years as an Assistant Principal at Paterson, she has been integral in helping to manage the school’s rapid growth while never losing sight of what matters most, Paterson’s close family culture. Ms. Brennan resides in the Fleming Island area, and is a proud mom of two recent graduates, her son from USF and her daughter from FIHS.
Matthew Boyack - Principal of Oakleaf High School
Matthew Boyack is a dedicated instructional leader who has served Clay County in various roles for the past 13 years. Mr. Boyack began his teaching career at Orange Park High School where he was a standout Social Studies teacher and coach. At Orange Park High School, he was a fervent advocate for teachers through his work as Clay County Education Association Board chairman and school-site representative. In 2015, he was honored by Clay County Schools as their “Teacher of the Year” and went on to win the Mary J. Brogan award for “Excellence in Teaching” at the state teacher of the year awards ceremony.
After a distinguished ten year teaching career at Orange Park High School, Mr. Boyack joined Oakleaf High School’s administration team in 2017. Mr. Boyack’s instructional leadership made an instant impact at Oakleaf as he helped propel OHS’ grade from a B to a sustainable A. Mr. Boyack has a passion for improving instruction, and he has revamped professional learning at OHS into a more learner-centric approach where teachers reflect, collaborate, and take ownership of their own learning. Mr. Boyack believes strongly in servant leadership, having a growth mindset, and involving all stakeholders in school-based decisions. Under his leadership, Oakleaf High School teachers hold high expectations for all students and are committed to the belief that everyone can succeed academically. As a result of his devotion and outstanding work, Mr. Boyack is Clay County’s Assistant Principal of the Year and was recently named a finalist for Florida’s Assistant Principal of the Year.
Mr. Boyack earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Social Studies Education from Southeast Missouri State University, a Master’s in Educational Leadership from Arkansas State University, and earned his Principal Certification through the rigorous and nationally renowned New Leaders program. Mr. Boyack is married to his wife, Jordan, and has a two-year-old daughter, Addyson.
Martin Aftuck - Principal of Middleburg High School
Martin Aftuck is a veteran 18-year Clay County educator. He has served as a gifted social studies teacher and coach at Lakeside Junior High, an AP US History teacher and Athletic Director at Orange Park High School, and as an assistant principal at Bannerman Learning Center and Oakleaf High School. Along the way, Mr. Aftuck developed a lifelong love for literacy and a passion for assisting at-risk students with access to academic interventions and social emotional learning. Following his appointment as principal at Bannerman, he proceeded to improve the climate and culture of Clay County’s alternative school by working alongside teachers and staff to facilitate an environment that incentivized positive behavior and high expectations for all learners. Together, they created systems to increase academic and behavioral expectations resulting in increased average daily student attendance by four percentage points from 2018 to 2019. Elevation Academy was created under his leadership in January 2019 to provide opportunities for at-risk student populations. Over 250 students have earned their high school diploma through Elevation Academy which has contributed to a 3 percent increase in the graduation rate for Clay County. Mr. Aftuck is an enthusiastic, lifelong learner who believes in the power of literacy, high expectations for students, and creating partnerships with all stakeholders. Mr. Aftuck and his family are proud Clay County residents.
Mark Mckinney - Principal of Bannerman Learning Center
Mr. Mckinney has been an educator in Clay County for the past 25 years. He began his tenure in Clay County at Bannerman Learning Center, teaching Adaptive PE in the EBD program. He then transitioned to Clay High School where he taught Algebra I and Algebra II for 16 years. During this time, he was selected as a Spotlight Teacher of the Year, Teacher of the Year semifinalist, and was very active with student engagement, coaching football and softball, and sponsoring many classes. Mr. Mckinney has spent the last eight years as vice principal at Ridgeview High School, working with teachers to build strong instructional practices and increase student graduation rates. Throughout his career, his focus has been on student achievement. He has been instrumental in planning and facilitating PLC’s that focus on cross-curricular learning, student data, and academic interventions. His experience as a data-driven teacher and leader will bring a wealth of knowledge to Bannerman Learning Center.
Mr. Mckinney earned an Associate of Arts from St. Johns River Community College, Bachelors of Arts in Education from University of North Florida, and a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership from Florida Agriculture and Mechanical University (FAMU). His wife Julie is an ELA teacher at Clay High School, and his two children Ethan and Jillian attend Clay High and Green Cove Junior High.
Laurie Burke - Principal of Keystone Heights Jr/Sr High School
Laurie Burke is an alumni of Keystone Heights Elementary School and Keystone Heights Jr/Sr High School, K-12. As a student-athlete, she took first place at state in the 110yd hurdles, 100m hurdles, the long jump, and went to the Final Four with her team in basketball. She continued her basketball career at Valdosta State University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Health and Physical Education. She also earned her Master’s Degree at the University of North Florida in Educational Leadership.
Burke has served the Clay County School District for 25 years at all levels, K-12. Most recently she has been a proven and dedicated leader of instruction as the assistant principal at Fleming Island High School and, prior to that, the assistant principal at Fleming Island Elementary School. With a vision for high expectations for all learners, Burke has worked alongside with teachers to improve instruction with an emphasis specifically on student engagement and strong and appropriate rigor. She has been trained through UNF in Instructional Coaching and in Foundations by Safe and Civil Schools which has enabled her to focus on building relationships to improve learning. Through her leadership, ELA Reading and Writing proficiency scores improved by as much as 10 percentage points in one year during her tenure at FIHS. Her husband is a teacher and their three children have attended Clay County Schools, which gives her a greater perspective through a variety of avenues to understand building lifelong learners.
Amanda Stilianou - Principal of Clay Virtual Academy
Amanda Stilianou is a proud graduate of the Clay County School District where she currently has 15-years in educational experience. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology and received her Master's degree in Educational Leadership from the American College of Education. As a classroom teacher she taught a wide range of subjects to include Biology, Anatomy, AP Chemistry, Algebra 2, and Math for College Readiness. She has been an Assistant Principal at Oakleaf High School for five years, where she has helped lead the school to an “A” grade, an increase in their graduation rate, and in expanding the digital learning throughout the school.
Mrs. Stilianou’s transformational leadership style is focused on building the capacity of all teachers and in integrating digital platforms into existing core curriculum to enhance instruction. She has been an advocate of education throughout her career. Her motto is "never ask someone to do something you are not willing to do." She is always willing to work alongside her teachers and staff to ensure that her school is the best that it can be. She has a deep passion for technology-infused education and shares her love for lifelong learning with students, teachers, faculty, and staff.
Mrs. Stilianou, her husband, and their two daughters are proud natives of Florida as well as Clay County graduates. As a family, they love discussions about improving education as well as traveling and spending time together outdoors.