Newsome High School Principal Katie Rocha was recently named Outstanding Administrator of the Year by the Florida PTA.

Newsome High School Principal Katie Rocha has some exciting news to celebrate this month. Rocha, who stepped into the leadership role at Newsome for the 2020 school year, was recently named Outstanding Administrator of the Year by the Florida PTA.

“I was overwhelmed with such a prestigious honor; I couldn’t wrap my head around this massive achievement,” said Rocha. “I realized this award doesn’t belong to Katie Rocha, it belongs to the faculty, students, parents and community.”

Rocha, who worked as the assistant principal for curriculum at Newsome for two years before becoming principal and held the same role at Bloomingdale High School for four years before that, was nominated for the award by the school’s PTSA board.

“This year, more than any other, every principal deserves an award,” said PTSA President Danielle Triplett. “With changes due to COVID-19 happening constantly, we are so proud of the calm and cool presence our principal offers the faculty and students. As the leader of our family, she goes beyond the day-to-day demands of her position to create an exceptionally safe and academically focused environment. She demonstrates positive actions and follows through on commitments to students, families, community and PTSA members.”

The letter of nomination for Rocha from the board listed four words to describe the principal.

“This is her first year as principal, but already four powerful words describe our candidate: leader, listener, empowering and communicative,” the letter reads. “Our nominee demonstrates these dynamic skills by influencing positive educational change, offering new program directions, promoting and supporting effective teaching and improved learning.”
Rocha shares the credit for her award with the school community.

“This success is the sum total of our Newsome community,” said Rocha. “We are a team of believers, doers, achievers, fighters, helpers, supporters and survivors that are solely dedicated to helping students design their definition of success now and in the future. My role, while extremely honorable, pales in comparison to the work of our faculty, students, parents and community that I get to serve daily. I am humbled and grateful that this honor was bestowed upon my Newsome family. Despite all of the obstacles we faced and face, we have the power to thrive.”

Newsome High School is located at 16550 FishHawk Blvd. and can be reached at 740-4600.

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Assignment Editor Kate Quesada started working at the Osprey Observer in 2004 after graduating from the University of South Florida with a masters degree in Mass Communications. Since then, she has held various positions at the paper and has been working as the assignment editor since January 2020. She lives in Lithia with her husband Mike and sons Dylan and Max and stays active in the community on school PTA boards and volunteering with local organizations.