ST. LUCIE COUNTY — Wide smiles and tributes to the efforts of their school teams were the remarks that echoed from St. Lucie West Centennial High School Principal Andrea Popwell and Dan McCarty Middle School Assistant Principal Samantha Piscopo as they were surprised with the news that they are, respectively, this year’s Outstanding Principal and Assistant Principal of the Year for St. Lucie Public Schools (SLPS).

“Outstanding school leaders set the pace for positive student achievement,” said Superintendent E. Wayne Gent. “Both administrators have a proven track record for supporting collaborative school cultures and sustaining positive academic growth for their students.”

Popwell and Piscopo are both veteran educators in SLPS and have been recognized for outstanding achievement and service throughout their careers. They are also no strangers to professional learning as they have a passion for being on the forefront of the latest educational research and best practices.

Both nominations from SLPS will be shared with the Florida Department of Education’s statewide pool of nominees. State winners will be announced later this year. The Principal Achievement Award for Outstanding Leadership was established in 1988 to recognize Florida principals for contributions to their schools and communities. The Outstanding Assistant Principal Achievement Award was established in 1997 to honor assistant principals that have utilized teamwork and leadership to increase student achievement and greatly improve school environments.

About St. Lucie Public Schools

St. Lucie Public Schools (SLPS) proudly serves students as the highest-ranking District on the Treasure Coast and fifth in Florida with a graduation rate of 90.1 percent. As a B rated District, there are no failing schools, and SLPS is ranked among the top one-third of Florida’s districts for student achievement. The District also has the distinction of being recognized as one of St. Lucie County’s Best Places to Work. The mission of SLPS is to ensure all students graduate from safe and caring schools equipped with the knowledge, skills and desire to succeed. For more information, visit http://www.stlucieschools.org.