Kamela Patton is in her sixth year as Superintendent of Collier County Public Schools (CCPS). She joined the district in June of 2011 following a 24-year career with Miami-Dade County Public Schools.
During the last five years, Dr. Patton has enhanced existing programs, instituted new technological tools, improved internal and external communications, and initiated new programs that increase student achievement. Under Dr. Patton’s direction, CCPS has improved its ranking from 33rd in the State in 2011 to 11th in 2016. During her tenure, students have increased performance on state tests as evidenced by an increase in the percentage of students meeting or exceeding the state average – 33% to 91% from 2011 to 2015 respectively. While academic success is the key focus of the school district, under Dr. Patton’s leadership, the district plans to be debt free within 10 years, a time period which includes building a new high school.
As part of the second three-year strategic plan created under Dr. Patton’s direction, the school district is focused on early childhood education, providing a college or career pathway for all students, Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEAM), a high-quality staff with a strong succession management plan, fiscal responsibility, and communication.
Over the past five years, Dr. Patton has received a number of awards. She was recognized as the Woman of Distinction in History for Diversity and is also an eSchool Learning National Tech-Savvy Superintendent Award Winner. She is the recipient of the Sunshine State School Public Relations Association (SUNSPRA) Outstanding Superintendent Communicator Award. Dr. Patton was named by Gulfshore Business as one of the 41 People with the Most Clout in Southwest Florida and a Power Woman by Florida Weekly magazine. She is a member of numerous local boards and was voted by her peers to be a member of the Board of Directors for the Florida Association of District School Superintendents (FADSS). Dr. Patton is a graduate of both Leadership Florida and Leadership Collier.
It is under Dr. Patton’s leadership that CCPS received both local and national recognition for its excellence and achievements. In 2016, the district’s Communications Department received 11 awards from the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA), the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce honored the district with its Excellence in Industry Chairman’s Award, and the Association for Educational Communications & Technology (AECT) and the School Media Technology Division (SMT) of AECT awarded the district its Richard B. Lewis Memorial Award for its outstanding utilization of technology.
Dr. Patton was a keynote speaker in Washington, DC, at Discovery Education’s Future@Now – Transition to Digital Classrooms Conference to discuss the state of digital learning and its impact on college and workforce readiness. While there, she also met with the Federal Communications Commission chairman to discuss the transition to digital learning. She was also invited to speak at the National Summit for Principal Supervisors presenting “Three Tools For Enhancing Principal Instructional Leadership.”
In addition to presenting at the local, regional, and national level, Dr. Patton also focuses on community and school events. Every week during the school year, Dr. Patton attends a number of sporting, programming, and academic events. Recently she joined Gulf Coast High School’s marching band as they marched in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City, she played the flute in the Philharmonic ProAm event, and she won the Broken Paddle Award after competing in the final Great Dock Canoe Races. Each year she enjoys walking in community parades and serving the community at events such as the Everglades Seafood Festival, the Farm City Barbeque, and Empty Bowls.
For the last few years, Dr. Patton has kicked-off the school year by joining one of the many teams that support our schools on opening day. She has served breakfast in a school cafeteria, worked in a front office, rode a school bus, and served as a crossing guard.
Dr. Patton truly values the school system, our community, and the opportunity she has to impact the lives of our young people.