Dr. Kamela Patton, the Collier County Superintendent of Schools, is officially out. After a unanimous vote from the school board Tuesday night, Patton was released from her duties earlier than anticipated.
There was a bit of confusion about how exactly her departure was first brought up. Nevertheless, Patton made one thing clear; she wants to go out on a positive note.
The meeting began with many parents upset at the idea of Patton being “pushed out,” with many making it known during the public comments section.
“This piece of paper I read this evening tells me that you’ve already made the decision; that deal is done,” a Collier County public school parent said.
Kelly Lichter, the Board Chair, insisted this be a positive transition.
Lichter went so far as to say she wished Patton nothing but the best.
Patton had similar sentiments, saying that however the idea came about, she supported the school board’s decision to go in a new direction.
She said there are a lot of other opportunities she’s excited to pursue and is proud of everything she and the board have accomplished together.
After officially voting on Patton’s departure, the board elected the current CCPS deputy superintendent, Dr. Leslie Ricciardelli, to take on the role of interim superintendent.
They will celebrate in Patton’s honor sometime in January.