Mrs. Cara Coletti-Span
8th Grade Assistant Principal
Prior to becoming a school based administrator, Ms. Coletti-Span was an educator for 16 years at the middle, high, and adult/community school levels. Ms. Coletti-Span graduated from South Broward High School and then went on to receive her Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from Florida Atlantic University. She holds a Master's degree in Educational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University, and is certified in Mathematics, Business Education, and Educational Leadership. This is her 14th year as a school based administrator.
First hired as an administrator at Margate Middle School in 2006, some of her career highlights include developing the “School is Cool” after-school program into the leading program in Broward County for improved student achievement, attendance and behavior two years in a row. She has written and been awarded over 100K in grants from companies such as Hewlett Packard and Motorola to support the SELECT+ Innovative and STEM Magnet programs at Margate. Additionally, she worked to develop the Professional Learning Communities for teachers, ultimately moving the school from C to B her last year there. A graduate of the PROPEL Rapid Principal Preparation Program, in 2014, Ms. Coletti-Span created and implemented a fully functioning RtI program for the principal of South Plantation High School within a few short months.
In December of 2015, she was asked to consider a new opportunity and come to William Dandy Middle School to help the district. Accepting the chance to broaden her leadership experience, she assumed the duties as the administrator over the Magnet program, Science and Elective Departments. Science scores steadily improved under Ms. Coletti-Span, a total of 8% points in the school years 2016 & 2017. Working closely with the Magnet Coordinator she developed a marketing plan to showcase the medical and law programs to local public, private, and charter elementary schools. These efforts effectively increased the school enrollment for the third year in a row, beating district projections. In 2016, Mrs. Coletti-Span, initiated the District's Vocabulary.com instructional program at the school. William Dandy students finished third in the State of Florida and 11th in the Nation for word mastery, among middle schools and was recognized by the School Board of Broward County. In 2017-2018, since taking over the PBIS program, William Dandy Middle School achieved "Model School" status, for effective use of the Positive Behavior Intervion Support program. This is an honor only 4 middle schools in Broward County have earned! Beginning with the 2017-2018 school year, she began serving as the administrator over the Reading and Language Arts Departments and in 2018-2019 moved proficiency and learning gains up 7% combined! Other responsibilities include safety & security, the master calendar, extra-curricular activities, athletic programs, transportation, PBIS and student incentives, and staff appreciation events.
In addition to her work life, Ms. Coletti-Span has raised three children, all graduates of Broward County Public Schools. Her daughters have both graduated from FAU and her son currently is currently attending UCF.
Dr. Marsha Grandison-Taylor,
7th Grade Assistant Principal
I am very excited to return to William Dandy to serve in the role of the 7th grade Assistant Principal. I believe that schools work best when the entire community rallies together to support students' social, emotional, academic and physical growth. Our Wildcat family is comprised of amazing students, dynamic teachers and staff, as well as caring and supportive parents. I am thrilled to be a part of this wonderful community once again.
I love supporting the teaching and learning process and witness students acquire skills that will later help them flourish as happy, successful and responsible adults. Educators have a direct impact on this success, and I am proud to support the mission of William Dandy Middle with a focus on developing the whole child. Collaboration, critical and creative thinking, communication, global citizenship, innovation, and strong character are emphasized as we support students as unique individuals and valued members of our community.
As students develop independence, it is important that they are encouraged to persevere. Personal success comes from working hard, both inside and outside of the classroom. Strong work habits and positive character attributes directly correlate to success. One of my favorite inspirational quotes is by H. Jackson Brown Jr., who states: “Our character is defined by what we do when we think no one is looking.” Life is all about choices, and we want to be proud of the choices we have made. We must acknowledge that there will always be problems to solve, and if we approach life with a growth mindset, we will create a culture that values continuous improvement via goal setting and reflective thinking.
Our administrative team is committed to supporting students as they assert independence and I am happy to be a part of this team. I am looking forward to working collaboratively in order to continue to foster a positive school climate where staff and students achieve personal success.
John W. Battle III
6th Grade Assistant Principal
“Knowledge is power and education is the cornerstone of all successful people and systems”
I am honored to serve the William Dandy Middle Students, Staff, Community and the Dillard Innovation Zone. I share the vision of B.C.P.S. and W.D.M.S. that focuses on “Educating today’s students to succeed tomorrow” and “One year of growth”. Our W.D.M.S. theme is “The World is Calling” and I am is committed to providing our students and staff with high quality leadership/instruction, a safe and supportive environment and effective communication.
Prior to joining the Williams Dandy family, I was instrumental in coordinating the both Middle and High School programs at Whiddon-Rogers Education Center and Hallandale Magnet High School by providing alternative educational and behavioral strategies that supported social emotional growth which instilled a desire for students to become lifelong learners.
As we reimagine our middle school programs, I strongly believe students can obtain academic success when given the proper environment, exposure, resources and presentation”.