• Principal Jennifer Bledsoe

    Principal: Jennifer Bledsoe

    Mrs. Bledsoe is the proud principal at Manatee Middle School. She was raised in Naples and is a graduate of Lely High School. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Education at the University of South Florida where she also played softball for the Bulls. She then completed a Master of Educational Leadership degree at Florida Gulf Coast University. 

    Mrs. Bledsoe has spent most of her 16 years in education working in Collier schools. She was a teacher at Lely High School. Later, she worked as an administrator at Golden Gate Middle, Lely High, and Corkscrew Middle School. Mrs. Bledsoe is honored and thrilled to be a part of the Hurricanes family. She is an ardent believer in student achievement for all. 

    Mrs. Bledsoe looks forward to collaborating with the dedicated staff, exceptional students, and surrounding community at Manatee Middle School as they continue to flourish and succeed. Go Hurricanes!



    Ms. Zima

    Assistant Principal: Curriculum and Instruction-  Christina Zima

    Ms. Zima was raised in Buffalo, New York.  She earned her Bachelor's degree from Houghton College in English and Education in 2005, a Master's of English Education from SUNY at Buffalo in 2010, and then a Master's of Educational Leadership from American College of Education in 2013.
    Ms. Zima started her teaching career in New York, teaching middle and high school English for five years.  She then spent four years at Barron Collier High School, assuming a variety of roles from teacher, to Student Government Advisor, to testing coordinator before moving to Golden Gate High School in 2015 as testing coordinator.
    Ms. Zima is very excited to begin her second year as part of the Manatee Middle team.  She looks forward to working together with students and parents to ensure the success of each and every student at Manatee Middle.  Her door is always open to student and parent questions and concerns.



    Assistant Principal: Discipline and Attendance -  Carey Gilcher

    Ms. Gilcher is excited for her first year as an administrator with CCPS. Having started her teaching career right here at Manatee Middle School, embarking on a new chapter on this campus is perfect. Her primary focus is working with teachers, students, and families to ensure that every student at Manatee Middle is successful.

    Prior to teaching, Ms. Gilcher worked in retail management, web page development, and fashion design. Her career in education began in 2002 in Lee County on a temporary assignment, and she transferred to Manatee Middle the next year. She also has experience working at Corkscrew Middle, Lorenzo Walker Technical High School, and the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. District Administrative Center where she was a district literacy specialist and a teacher on special assignment focusing on Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS), Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS), Marzano’s Instructional Model, and New Teacher Training.

    Ms. Gilcher was born and raised in Syracuse, NY. She spent two years in Tarpon Springs, FL during high school, and then returned to Central New York to attend Syracuse University and then LeMoyne College where she earned her Bachelor’s Degree in English Literature and Communications. Most recently, Ms. Gilcher has completed her first graduate degree at American College of Education, earning a Master’s of Education in Educational Leadership. She is passionate about art and has been a participant and award winner at Naples Chalk Art on 5th for the past 6 years, as well as volunteering with the Harry Chapin Food Bank’s Empty Bowls event as a featured artist. However, her biggest passion is spending time being an aunt to ten incredible nieces and nephews.

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