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Choice to fill Braden River High principal role a born leader

Sharon Scarbrough leaves Haile Middle School to take same position at Braden River High.

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  • | 3:40 p.m. May 24, 2017
Haile Middle School Principal Sharon Scarbrough will leave the middle school to be Braden River High School'    s new principal.
Haile Middle School Principal Sharon Scarbrough will leave the middle school to be Braden River High School' s new principal.
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Carlos E. Haile Middle School Principal Sharon Scarbrough said she was born to be a leader.

The Manatee County School District agrees.

Scarbrough, 45, will take over as the principal at Braden River High School next semester.

Kimone Cooper, an assistant principal at Haile, said Braden River is getting an exceptional administrator.

“She is a great boss,” Cooper said. “She has done so many great things for us here.”

Scarbrough, who has been the Haile principal since 2014, will take over for Jennifer Gilray, who left Braden River to become assistant director at Manatee Technical College. A replacement for Scarbrough at Haile has not been named.

“It has been an innate part of me to be a leader, and I have been since I was young,” Scarbrough said. “I knew I wanted to be a leader in education because the best people that I ever knew growing up were the teachers I had, and I wanted to be around that all the time.”

Scarbrough said she is sad to leave her students, staff and administrators at Haile, but being a high school principal was always her goal.

“My head was just spinning a little at first,” Scarbrough said. “I could not sleep the first night after I had found out because my mind was racing, but only from excitement.”

She set aside her excitement and told her twins, Ciarra and Holden, who will be seniors at Lakewood Ranch High School. She knows her family now will have a rivalry right at home.

She began her career as a long-term substitute for the Manatee County School District in 1995 before taking a position as a social studies teacher at Lakewood Ranch High School when it opened in 1998.

“I remember the first time I sent an email, it was the newest thing, sending an email to another teacher on campus,” Scarbrough said. 

Scarbrough has been in school administration for 13 years, serving as principal at W.D. Sugg Middle School from 2009 to 2014. Before that, she was assistant principal at Buffalo Creek Middle School, where her husband, Brad Scarbrough, is now principal.

“I feel prepared in that I have the experience, and I know many of the families in this community, so I have already built that trust with many of them,” she said.

While Scarbrough is familiar with the way in which a high school operates, she is aware of the difference between middle school and high school students.

“Having worked at both middle and high schools, middle school students are still finding out who they are,” Scarbrough said. “High school students know who they are, or who they want to be, and when you are working at a high school, you are helping them reach that goal.”


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