School board member persists in call to fire superintendent

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Seal of the School District of Lee County. Photo via WINK News.
Seal of the School District of Lee County. Credit: WINK News.

School Board Member Melisa Giovannelli is doubling down on her call to fire the School District of Lee County superintendent. On Monday evening, Giovannelli was defending her position over why she wants Dr. Greg Adkins gone.

The incident all comes after Giovannelli slammed Adkin’s performance in her recent evaluation. Giovannelli said the School District of Lee County is at a breaking point, pointing her finger at Adkins.

“The turmoil at the district has to be salvageable and saved,” Giovannelli said. “At this point in time, we need to go into a new direction to do that.”

MORE: School board continue talks over Lee County superintendent’s role

In an exclusive interview, Giovannelli doubled down on what she wrote in her performance evaluation made public last week. She wrote that Adkins “leads through fear and intimidation.” She accused him of failing to communicate and respond to the board effectively.

Giovannelli overall rating – unsatisfactory – gave Adkins just a 1.42 score out of four.

“Adkins likes to be in control he has a very difficult time not being in control even at this present board,” Giovannelli said. “That’s why the divisions there is because he feels the need to be over us instead of the way it supposed to be us governing him.”

Each board member did an evaluation of Adkins further showing the division. Chris Patricca and Cathleen Morgan gave him near perfect scores. They said he is the ideal man for the job. That division among board members is another reason why Giovannelli believes Adkins must go.

“If that means a new leader and leadership,” Giovannelli said, “then that is probably the best direction for the district.”

Adkins addressed the board’s review of him Friday. He acknowledged he needs to make changes.

“This board has a different expectation,” Adkins said. “We’re making adjustments in terms of the structure of our administration offices so that we can respond more effectively.”

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