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Leadership Team

LiFT FL tammy2
LiFT Academy

Tami VanOverbeke

I was born and raised in Minnesota surrounded by a loving and supportive family. I am the middle of three girls and the first to go to college. I attended a private college and received scholarships for academics and athletics. I graduated in four years with three Bachelor’s Degrees and went on to complete two Master’s, an Educational Specialist Degree and a Doctorate. 

During my junior and senior years in college, I completed numerous hours of practicum and student teaching in six different grade levels in elementary and secondary, all of which were inner city. The school where I did my kindergarten student teaching there were hundreds of applicants for each job opening. I stayed in that district for 19 years, then moved to the district where my mom lived to help her while she battled breast cancer. While there, I opened a brand new consortium arts secondary school with 2,000 students from eight surrounding districts and was the sole principal at two campuses that were six blocks apart. 

After my mom passed, I left that district to go to a suburban district with my boss, who was the Assistant Superintendent at that time. During my seven years there, I had the pleasure of being the principal of many special abilities students, which included all the neuro-diverse students in the district. It was an amazing opportunity! 

Once my youngest child graduated from high school, I moved to Florida and became the principal of a school with the highest indicator of generational poverty in the county. While there the school received a B grade for the first time since being recognized as a Title I school. It was a spectacular accomplishment that encompassed a lot of hard work, planning, and communication. It was an example of teamwork at its finest. 

Passion: My passion is doing right by kids, staff, and the community. I truly enjoy watching kids grow (academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally), staff succeed, and getting to know and working with the families and community. It sometimes takes a village and a lot of hard work to demonstrate growth in each area and that every child should experience. 

Philosophy: When it comes to being a principal, I value a safe, inclusive, student-centered culture where high expectations are the norm; where strong relationships are developed and maintained; and where everyone involved is engaged and accepts accountability for the success of all children.

Goals: My goals are to do what is necessary to live my philosophy every single day and make LiFT a spectacular school that students, staff, families, and the community are proud of and love! I am beyond excited to get started.