Cleveland announces candidacy

Lou ClevelandDr. Lou Cleveland has served as the District 2 member of the Washington County School Board since 2016. She has served as Chairman of the Board for the last two years. Dr. Cleveland received Certified Board Member distinction in 2017 after completing workshops in Advocacy, School Finance, and Governance.

“During the last four years, it has been a privilege to work with the members of the Board to implement and revise policy, be diligent with school finances, and set innovative and appropriate goals to improve instruction for all students. I am very proud of our efforts to pass the half cent sales tax. Funds from this tax have provided classroom technology, individual laptops for students, and funds to renovate and update school facilities. The Board has also initiated a tuition reimbursement scholarship for dual enrollment teachers, developed a plan and approved projects to improve school safety, and worked with agencies to provide free meals to all students in Washington County.”

Dr. Lou Cleveland holds a Bachelor’s, Master’s, Specialist’s and Doctorate degree from Florida State University. Dr. Cleveland worked in public education for 45 years as a teacher or teaching administrator. She was a mathematics teacher at Chipley High School from 1973 – 1982. In the fall of 1982, Dr. Cleveland became the mathematics coordinator at Chipola Junior College where she taught mathematics, began the Chipola Mathematics Olympiad, created the mathematics and science tutoring laboratory, and developed several mathematics and science initiatives that were recognized with Florida statewide awards. In 1989, she temporarily returned to Chipley High School to co-teach mathematics dual enrollment classes. Dr. Cleveland was serving as Division Chair of Mathematics and Science when Chipola became a four year college and teacher education was added to her division. Under her leadership, Chipola’s bachelor education programs grew from two majors in Secondary Mathematics and Biology Education to degree programs in Middle School Mathematics, Middle School Science, Elementary Education, Exceptional Student Education, English Education and The Educator Preparation Institute. She was serving as Dean of the School of Education when she retired. Dr. Cleveland has mentored teacher candidates in K -12 classrooms in Jackson, Calhoun, Liberty, Holmes, Washington and Walton Counties.

Dr. Cleveland was recognized during her career with the following teaching awards: Florida Association of Community College Professor of the Year, Florida Two Year College Mathematics Association Professor of the Year, Florida Council of Teachers of Mathematics Educator of the Year, J. R. Kirkland Teaching Award, and the American Council of College Trustees Southern Region Outstanding Faculty Award. She was recognized with two FACC state curriculum awards and a Chamber of Commerce state award for Exemplary and Innovative Efforts to Improve Teaching of Mathematics and Science in Florida Schools. During her tenure at Chipola, Dr. Cleveland served as Chairman of the Statewide Committee for the College Level Academic Skills Program which made recommendations to the Governor and the State Cabinet. During the 2014 – 2015 school year, Dr. Cleveland co-wrote and administrated an approximately half million dollar grant that provided CPALMS training to teachers and pre-service teachers in thirteen counties.

“Teaching students and assisting each one of them in achieving his/her educational goals has been my passion. I have been fortunate to teach and share in the lives of many outstanding students. It has been a joy to watch them excel in their careers and make positive differences in their communities.“

“Working in education has been an amazing and exciting journey. It has required adaptation to diverse populations, evolving student learning preferences and the implementation of innovative instructional strategies that make use of multi-sensory and technology-based teaching methods to engage learners. The challenges that I faced in my classroom have provided a foundation for understanding the demands of the District classrooms and the pressures that teachers and support personnel experience when the instructional environment is changed or interrupted.“

“It has been a pleasure to be part of the Washington County School System. I am proud of the level of achievement that our students are exhibiting in the classroom, extracurricular activities and their volunteer activities. I would be honored to continue to use my experience to serve the students, teachers, school administrators and support personnel, and parents of Washington County.”

Dr. Cleveland is married to Al Cleveland who is retired from the Washington County Health Department. She has two grown children, Colby Cleveland and Emily Phillips, and two grandchildren.