Meet the top 5 candidates for Lee County school district superintendent

FORT MYERS

The School District of Lee County will soon have a new leader.

But first, they have to choose from the top five Lee County superintendent candidates. The candidates were interviewed recently.

They are waiting to hear back and see who will move forward to the final round.

The candidates are:

Christopher Bernier is the chief of staff at the Fifth largest school district in the country at Clark County in Las Vegas. Bernier told the Lee County School Board he counts pennies and dimes and doesn’t spend money “nilly willy.” But he is no stranger to Florida. He spent 33 years working in Orange County Schools.
Jeff Perry is the district superintendent in Morristown, Tennessee for four years. Before that he spent 15 years as division superintendents in Virginia and Colorado. Perry told the board he is a community man and became a spokesperson for his county when the pandemic began.
Randy Mahlerwerin is the assistant superintendent in Mesa County, Arizona. He is also an adjunct faculty member at Arizona State’s College of Education. He also told the school board he’s a reader and reads more books about leadership than anyone he knows.
Michael Ramirez is the deputy superintendent for Denver Public Schools. Before that, he worked for the Broward County School District for 16 years. He told the board a story about his 11th-grade teacher investing in him and inspiring him to get his grades up. It led him to his career in education.
Michael Gaal works in sales in the private sector in New Jersey. Before that, he was deputy chancellor for D.C.’s public school system. Prior to that, he was a military man, serving as a deputy director of policy for the U.S. Airforce.

The candidates spoke about their ideas for addressing the achievement gap which has been made larger because of the pandemic.

Hear what they had to say by watching the segment below.

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