New principals named for Sarasota Middle, Laurel Nokomis schools

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SARASOTA COUNTY –

Superintendent Lori White has named new leaders for Sarasota Middle School and Laurel Nokomis School. Roy Sprinkle, the school district’s current director of human resources, will be the principal of Sarasota Middle. Raymond Wilson, an assistant principal at Heron Creek Middle School in North Port, will become principal of Laurel Nokomis. Both appointments started Monday, May 2.

Sprinkle will succeed former Sarasota Middle School principal Karen Rose, who was named the district’s executive director of middle schools in October. Candace Dearing is serving as acting principal of Sarasota Middle. Wilson will succeed longtime Laurel Nokomis principal Nancy Dubin, who is retiring from the district.

Sarasota Middle serves students in grades six-eight; it began as Sarasota Junior High in 1951. Laurel Nokomis, which opened in 1992, is the district’s only K-eight school.

Rose said, “Roy is a remarkable leader that embodies the qualities and skills to take Sarasota Middle School’s vision of innovative learning to the next level. His love of the school and its students is unsurpassed.”

Speaking about Raymond Wilson, Rose said, “Ray’s passion for students and the school community, combined with his respect for Laurel Nokomis and the accomplishments of its students and staff, are a perfect formula to lead the school community forward.”

Sprinkle and Wilson were equally effusive. “I feel blessed to have been chosen as the new leader of Sarasota Middle School,” said Sprinkle. “Karen Rose has done an outstanding job there for many years and I can only hope to continue with the accomplishments of this incredible school community. Sarasota has been my home for over 17 years. I’m proud to say that I am raising my two children in this beautiful place.” Sprinkle’s son Royce and daughter Kennady are twins in fourth grade at Gulf Gate Elementary.

Sprinkle has been the school district’s director of human resources and labor relations since 2007. He served as principal of Bay Haven School of Basics Plus (elementary) from 2004-07. He was an assistant principal at North Port High from 2001-04 and served in that role at Booker Middle from 1998-2001. He held various administrative positions with the Osceola County (Fla.) School District in 1997-98 and served as an assistant principal of a junior/ senior high school in Indiana from 1995-97. He taught children with emotional handicaps in Indiana from 1989-95.

Sprinkle earned a certificate of educational leadership from the University of Central Florida, a master’s degree in educational studies from Purdue University (Indiana), and a bachelor’s degree in public affairs from Indiana University Bloomington.

Wilson said, “I count the opportunity to lead Laurel Nokomis School as an honor and a privilege. I am anxious to join such a dedicated team that has worked tirelessly to build a legacy of excellence. A quote by ragtime composer Scott Hayden embodies my philosophy and beliefs: ‘Teachers have three loves: a love of learning, a love of learners, and the love of bringing the first two loves together.’

“I am a learner first, and a teacher and leader second. I believe the continued success of Laurel Nokomis will be accomplished by reflecting on the instruction we deliver to ensure that we meet our high expectations and uncompromising commitment to excellence. Students deserve more than our best, they deserve our all — and nothing less.”

Wilson has been assistant principal twice at Heron Creek Middle since October 2007. In school years 201213 and 2013 - 14 he was assistant principal at Woodland Middle School in North Port. He taught music at Heron Creek from 2003 until he became an administrator at the school. For four years Wilson was a music teacher at three schools in Tallahassee: Deer Creek Middle (1999-2001), Sabal Palm Elementary (2001-02) and Bond Elementary (2002-03). He holds a bachelor’s degree in music education from Florida A&M University and a master’s in educational leadership from the University of South Florida. Several of Wilson’s family members, including three of his brothers, are educators in Florida school districts. His mother is a retired educator.

Wilson and his wife, Selena, have a daughter and three sons, who are Raymond’s stepsons. One of them, Trenton Tompkins, is currently in eighth grade at Heron Creek Middle; he plans to attend Venice High next year.

Sarasota Middle School is located at 4826 Ashton Road, Sarasota. Laurel Nokomis School is at 1900 E. Laurel Road, Nokomis.

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