The Anna Maria Island Sun Newspaper

Vol. 12 No. 37 - June 27, 2012


Principal glad he made the move

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

tom vaught | sun
Anna Maria Elementary School Principal David Marshall said
he might institute more family events at the school like the
father-daughter dance and the mother-son luau.

HOLMES BEACH – Nearly a week had passed since school let out for the year, and David Marshall was assessing his first year at Anna Maria Elementary School after moving from Blackburn Elementary.

“It was a great first year,” he said. “All the things that went on, the parents and teachers shared true involvement and all the community support from the volunteers and businesses were great for the school.”

The only downside could have been the FCAT scores, which were said to be lower due to differences in this year’s test from previous years, but Marshall said that probably won’t happen.

“We don’t have the school grades, which are a product of the student scores, but I looked at some individual scores and it looks like Anna Maria will score above average again.”

Marshall said Anna Maria’s consistently high scores in the FCAT testing are a result of effort from many directions.

“Strong family support, good teaching, good students – it takes all of us working together to do what needs to be done,” he said.

Marshall said groups within the community add to the educational experience.

“The Rotary Club and the Kiwanis Club have added to the mix,” he said. “They do so much for the kids with the Rotary Readers and the Kiwanis Grandparents Program, among many programs that have been at the school for a long time.”

He also spoke highly of the Parent Teacher Organization (PTO).

“They are just as important to the school, providing financial resources for the teachers that directly benefits the students,” he said. “Their fund raisers and their monthly dinners that are so well attended are all great for the community as well as the school.”

Marshall said he is not one to sit back and stagnate – he wants to build on this year.

“I want the teachers to continue to grow and to learn the research-based best practices being implemented to help students increase their academic learning,” he said. “I want the students to have high expectations of themselves.”

Marshall said the school’s reputation is shown in what its alumnae accomplish.

“We’re proud when our former students do well,” he said. “We had two students win the Golden Feather award at Southeast High School, something that’s hard to do, and we would like to think they learned their study habits at Anna Maria.”

Marshall initiated two events that brought students closer to their parents – the father-daughter dance and the mother-son luau on the beach.

“I want the students to be well-rounded,” he said. “I see those events happening again.”

Marshall said it feels like his first year flew by, and he wants to reach out and meet more business partners and community leaders in the next year. He said he will build on what he’s learned in his first year and he always has the same goals.

“We want our schools to excel,” he said. “I will continue to look for growth in our school, and my goal is to take it farther.”

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