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Sarasota County Schools Announces 2024 Principal of the Year and 2024 Assistant Principal of the Year

Sarasota County Schools Announces 2024 Principal of the Year and 2024 Assistant Principal of the Year

Sarasota County, FL, October 18, 2023 – Sarasota County Schools is pleased to announce that Venice Elementary School’s Dr. Kirk Hutchinson has been selected as the district’s 2024 Principal of the Year, and Sarasota High School’s Mrs. Lindsay Gallof has been selected as the district’s 2024 Assistant Principal of the Year.

“We are excited to have this opportunity to thank our impactful school leaders,” said Rachael O'Dea, Deputy Superintendent, Chief Academic Officer. “Our district is fortunate to have many highly skilled principals and assistant principals. Kirk and Lindsay embody the dedication, compassion, and expertise we value in our school leaders – they will serve as stellar representatives of Sarasota County Schools over the next year.”

Dr. Hutchinson and Mrs. Gallof are now in the running for Principal of the Year and Assistant Principal of the Year, respectively, at the state level. Per the Florida Department of Education (FLDOE), the Principal Achievement Award for Outstanding Leadership [Principal of the Year] was established in 1988 to recognize Florida principals for their contributions to their schools and communities. The FLDOE’s Outstanding Assistant Principal Achievement Award [Assistant Principal of the Year] was established in 1997 to honor assistant principals that have utilized teamwork and leadership to increase student achievement and improve school environments. FLDOE Commissioner Manny Diaz, Jr. will announce three state-level finalists for each award in spring 2024. The overall winner for each state-level award will be revealed in summer 2024.

“Kirk is a talented principal with a heart for building community among his entire school,” noted Jennifer Mainelli, Chief, Elementary Schools. “The culture at Venice Elementary reflects the time and care that each team member invests in their work. Kirk leads his teachers & staff members by example, and that in turn inspires the entire school community – students, their families, volunteers & community partners alike – to be at their absolute best.”

Dr. Kirk Hutchinson holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from the University of Maryland, College Park; a Master’s Degree in Administration and Supervision from Johns Hopkins University; and a Doctor of Education from the University of Florida. He is a graduate of “The Art of Leadership” institute at Harvard University’s The Principals’ Center. Prior to assuming his current role as the Principal of Venice Elementary School in June 2018, Hutchinson served as the Principal of Atwater Elementary School from February 2009 to June 2018. He has also served as the Assistant Principal of Lamarque Elementary School, the Assistant Principal of Sallie Jones Elementary School (Punta Gorda, FL), and the Assistant Principal of Talbott Springs Elementary School (Columbia, MD). Hutchinson is a current member of Leadership Florida Education Class 8, a current member of Sarasota County Schools’ Professional Learning Committee Guiding Coalition, and a current member of the Florida Association of School Administrators’ Legislative Committee.

“Lindsay is a dynamic school leader known for her strong work ethic and compassion,” said Dr. Megan Green, Chief, High Schools. “She has made a tangible impact at each school community she has been a member of through her focus on educational best practices and fostering community. Lindsay is committed to supporting both her students and her colleagues, ensuring all are connected to the resources they need to succeed in school and at work.”

Mrs. Lindsay Gallof holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Special Education: Varying Exceptionalities from the University of South Florida and a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from the American College of Education. She holds certifications in Exceptional Student Education (ESE) K-12, Middle Grades Integrated Curriculum (MGIC) 5-9, Math 5-9, and School Principal K-12. Prior to assuming her current role as the Assistant Principal of Curriculum at Sarasota High School in July 2023, Gallof served as the Assistant Principal of Curriculum at Venice High School from June 2021 to July 2023. She has also served at Venice High School as the Assistant Principal of Administration and an Assistant Principal supervising the ESE Department, Social Studies, Project 10, Dropout Prevention, and Attendance. Gallof has additionally served as an Assistant Principal Intern at Riverview High School, a Program Specialist for Sarasota County Schools, a Behavior Specialist at Riverview High School, an ESE Liaison at Riverview High School, a Mathematics teacher at Booker Middle School, and an ESE Inclusion Teacher at Riverview High School.

Sarasota County Schools has received two prior overall Florida Principal of the Year awards. Alta Vista Elementary School’s Dr. Barbara Shirley (ret.) received the honor in 2014, and Booker High School’s Dr. Rachel Shelley received the honor in 2017.

 

About Sarasota County Schools

Sarasota County Schools is committed to providing unrivaled academic, developmental, and civic growth to every student, every day. Our schools offer a variety of engaging programs and rigorous learning pathways to expertly cater to the diverse needs of all our students. We are one of two Florida school districts to consistently earn an A-grade every year since 2004, and have been awarded the Mid-Sized School District of the Year by the University of Cambridge. Sarasota County Schools’ dedicated educators empower students to take charge of their academic and personal success, a practice we believe fosters lifelong growth and achievement. Our schools actively maintain the district’s tradition of excellence and ensure that tradition extends to all students. Our commitment to our students extends beyond graduation to make sure they not only graduate on time, but do so college and career ready. Want to take your student’s education to the next level? Learn more by connecting with us on social media (@sarasotaschools on Facebook, Instagram, X, YouTube, and LinkedIn) or by visiting www.SarasotaCountySchools.net.

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Rachael O'Dea, Kirk Hutchinson, Chris Renouf

SCS 2024 Principal of the Year (L to R): Rachael O'Dea, Deputy Superintendent, Chief Academic Officer; Kirk Hutchinson, Principal of Venice Elementary School; Chris Renouf, Chief of Staff

 

Sarasota High admin team

SCS 2024 Assistant Principal of the Year (L to R): Ryan Chase, Principal of Sarasota High School; Holly Hultgren, Assistant Principal at Sarasota High School; Lindsay Gallof, Assistant Principal of Curriculum at Sarasota High School; Alana Pietranton, Assistant Principal at Sarasota High School; Dr. Robin Livingston, Assistant Principal of Administration at Sarasota High School; Sean Donovan, Assistant Principal at Sarasota High School