Each year, the Florida Department of Education recognizes exemplary principals and assistant principals across the state for their contributions to their schools and communities. Recognition is given to elite school administrators who spearhead initiatives to increase student performance, promote safe learning environments, and establish partnerships with parents and community members. The following two Osceola administrators have been selected for recognition as 2018-2019 District winners:
Principal Achievement Award for Outstanding Leadership – District Winner Nadia Winston, Principal of Central Avenue Elementary
During her career, Nadia Winston has held the following positions: Teacher at Kissimmee Middle (1998-2003); Dean of Students at Kissimmee Middle (2003-2006); Assistant Principal at Highlands Elementary (2006-2009); Principal at Highlands Elementary (2009-2013); Principal at Westside K-8 (2013-2018); and Principal at Central Avenue Elementary (2018-present). She received her bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in Secondary Education from the University of Florida, and an Educational Specialist degree in Educational Leadership from Stetson University.
Outstanding Assistant Principal Achievement Award – District Winner
Yvette Ponzoa, Assistant Principal at Gateway High
During her career, Yvette Ponzoa has held the following positions: Teacher at The Baudhuin School in Fort Lauderdale (1994-1999); Teacher at Pasadena Lakes Elementary in Pembroke Pines (1999-2001); Autism Specialist at Country Isles Elementary (2001-2002); Resource Compliance Specialist for Celebration K-8 (2002-2003) and Celebration High (2003-2007); Dean of Students at Kissimmee Middle (2007-2009) and Celebration High (2009-2011); MTSS Coach at Celebration High (2009-2011); and Assistant Principal at Celebration High (2011-2018) and Gateway High (2018-present). She received her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education, a master’s degree in Varying Exceptionalities, and an Educational Specialist degree in Educational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University.
“Both ladies are tremendous examples of highly-effective instructional leaders who also promote and support a positive culture focused on mutual respect, collaboration, and commitment to excellence,” said Superintendent Dr. Debra Pace. “I am extremely proud that they will be representing all of the amazing and dedicated school administrators we have in Osceola County at the state level.”