The Education, Communication, Student Welfare and Outstanding Student Education Equity and Awareness Departments of Alachua County School District will now be led by Anntwanique D. Edwards, Ph.D. .
In his new position recently created by School Superintendent Carlee Simon, Ph.D., Edwards’ title is now Head of Equity, Inclusion and Community Engagement.
âDr. Edwards has an impressive academic background and has clearly shown leadership in supporting children and families,â Simon said in a recent press release. âShe has also been actively involved in the community, in particular with organizations serving young people. Dr Edwards has shared with me a number of ideas for meeting the needs of the child as a whole. our management team and the community to put these ideas into practice. “
According to the district’s website, the Education Equity and Outreach Office was established in September 2017 specifically to close the achievement gap between black and white students through the development of a equity plan, training and community partnerships. The office held extensive training with teachers and administrators on culturally appropriate classrooms, with the goal of having all 2,000 teachers in the district trained by spring 2018. The office is organizing additional training on equity in the district and made numerous presentations to community sponsored groups, as well as meetings with parents and other community stakeholders.
The achievement gap in Alachua County has always been the worst in the state.
As part of Simon’s reorganization plan, the Head of Equity, Inclusion and Community Engagement and the Director of Student Well-being and Professional Services will replace the Office of Equity and outreach led by Valerie Freeman, who is now the director of the Fernside Family Services Center.
Edwards began working for the Alachua County School District in 1994 and has served as a Kindergarten to Grade 12 substitute teacher, college counselor, high school counselor, and vice-principal, the latter being the position she held. at Eastside High School prior to its current position.
Edwards said she was excited about the challenge and the great opportunity to really support students in the best way possible.
Edwards has entered the race and has so far reviewed around 100 applications and conducted 10 interviews.
Edwards spoke about the district’s mission and commitment to each student’s success.
“It is essential,” she said. âActive collaboration is essential; work on specific goals for our students to be successful. Partnering with other people gives us more resources and allows us to have more opportunities for growth and to support the child as a whole.
Edwards is a graduate of the University of Florida, where she holds a PhD in Educational Leadership, an MA in Educational Leadership and Mental Health Counseling, an Education Specialist Diploma in Mental Health Counseling, and a BA in Sociology.