Okaloosa County Superintendent of Schools Mary Beth Jackson is seeking re-election for a second term in 2016.
Jackson unseated Alexis Tibbetts in 2012, winning about 13 percent more of the vote than Tibbetts.
During Jackson’s term, Okaloosa Schools saw its district grade reduced from an “A” to a “B” for the first time in a decade. Last year the district regained its “A” grade.
Before taking office in 2012, Jackson was a school district administrator. She began her education career as a teacher and later as a guidance counselor. Prior to teaching, Jackson worked in the banking industry, her college’s business office and for a construction company.
Jackson is the second candidate to file for superintendent of schools. Edwins Fine and Performing Arts School Principal Marline Van Dyke filed her election paperwork in May, indicating that there’s been “a point of disappointment and fear” within the district. Van Dyke has raised nearly $9,000 so far.
Van Dyke is a graduate of Okaloosa Walton College and University of West Florida with a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the education field. Van Dyke began her career in education as a elementary school teacher. She later moved up to become principal at Silver Sands School and later Riverside Elementary before moving to Edwins Fine and Performing Arts School.