The Economic Club of Tampa Speaker for November 5 is Jeff Eakins, Superintendent, Hillsborough County Public Schools Topic: Economics of the 8th Largest County School District in the United States
Jeff Eakins has served as superintendent of Hillsborough County Public Schools since July 1, 2015. ( https://www.sdhc.k12.fl.us/ ) He has devoted his entire career to the education of children. He works tirelessly to improve the quality of education because he believes that when the right learning conditions are in place, all children can grow to be successful and responsible citizens. He and the School Board of Hillsborough County led the school district into creating a five-year strategic plan that seeks to increase high school graduation rates to 90% by 2020. The plan also seeks to create a strong foundation of financial stewardship and to build a culture where children are the top priority and healthy relationships create strong bonds that bring diverse groups together for a common goal: the success of our students!
Throughout his entire career, Jeff has been an advocate for children, seeking to provide support systems and educational programming that enable children to achieve a promising future. The school district’s motto “Preparing Students for Life” supports his belief that schools should develop children into well rounded adults who have a purpose and a plan for success. He believes that whatever a student can dream for their future, education is the key that opens the door to those possibilities.
Jeff began his career as a fifth grade teacher at North Franklin Elementary School in Columbus, Ohio in 1987. In 1989, Jeff moved to Hillsborough County and taught for two years at Wimauma Elementary School and nearly five years at Cypress Creek Elementary School, where he was named teacher of the year in 1992 and later become principal in 2001. He also served as assistant principal for elementary instruction at Springhead Elementary School.
In 2006, he became director of the school district’s Title I program. He was also promoted to General Director of Federal Programs. In this role, Jeff worked closely with legislators at the state and national level on a variety of issues impacting children and education in Hillsborough County. He also collaborated with the U.S. and Florida Departments of Education on the implementation of several education laws such as No Child Left Behind.
In March 2013, Mr. Eakins was appointed Assistant Superintendent for Performance Management and Community Support. Later that year, he was promoted to Deputy Superintendent for the district. Two years later he was named Acting Superintendent.
Mr. Eakins has received numerous awards and recognitions throughout his career including 1992 Teacher of the Year at Cypress Creek Elementary School, the 2010 Dr. Earl Lennard Outstanding Leader Award for Hillsborough County Public Schools, and also in 2010, the National Association of Federal Education Program Administrators’ Outstanding Leadership Award for the state of Florida.
He is a graduate of the 2011 Leadership Tampa Class, co-chair of the Leadership Tampa 2015 Education Committee, and serves on the Board of Directors for the Florida Association of Instructional Supervisors and Administrators and the Children’s Board of Hillsborough County.
Jeff earned a Bachelor of Science in Education from Ohio State University and a Master of Science in Educational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University. He has been married for more than 25 years to Peggy Eakins.
Learn more about the amazing students, teachers and schools in Hillsborough County Public Schools at: https://www.sdhc.k12.fl.us/newsdesk
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