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Sunday, May 21, 2023

Let’s talk about Dana Kriznar

There is a good chance she will be DCPS’s interim super come June 2nd, for at least six months, and because the superintendent job will be so unattractive, maybe longer, much longer.

Chairman Coker, who obviously wields immense power, gave her the nod in a recent Jax Today article. This could be a good thing, they must have worked together when Coker was an admin in the district, or it could be a bad thing as Coker worked with her when she was an admin in the district.

This is what has become pretty apparent unless you know Kriznar, you don’t really know Kriznar.      

I have heard her name and think I even met her once about a decade ago after I wrote a piece about reading. Believe it or not, I used to be able to write about real issues instead of made-up culture war BS but that, to be honest, may or may not have happened.

So, the first thing I did was put her name into the search line of the blog. I have covered DCPS admin shenanigans, gaffs, and poor behavior many times, and nothing came up, and I thought that was probably a good thing.

Most of my stories come from people working in the district. When I write about an admin or principal, it has always been because multiple people have come to me, usually pleading with me to say something, and at least since 2007, no such group had come to me about Kriznar.

So next, I googled her, and two pieces of note came up.

First, this is not the first time she was up for the intern super role. She was also up for it after Vitti left.

In another article, Vitti recommended a half dozen people, including Kriznar as possible replacements, one was Iranetta Wright, so I can’t say how serious of a list that was. Ultimately the board at the time went with Dr. Patricia Willis, who I thought was a great choice.

Then after the state got rid of A.P. African American History, I found this article in the Devil’s Advocate where Kriznar tepidly pushed back against the state.

“In the Department of Education, from the framework, they said that it was in violation of the new legislation that they had about indoctrination,” said Deputy Superintendent Dana Kriznar.


According to Kriznar, a member of the AAHTF, Florida may reconsider the AP class if the curriculum is amended.


“We were very excited when we heard they were starting a pilot and asked to be part of [it], and we at least know of one school that got into the pilot for the upcoming year,” said Kriznar. “We were very disappointed when we learned we would not be able to implement that curriculum.”


Additionally, Kriznar supervised Duval County’s African American History Summer Writing Initiative in 2022, where students in Duval County created lesson plans for teaching African American history. With the help of a publisher, the organization’s source books facilitated the program’s course while following standards provided by the state.


“The program was very insightful into local history and information that is often overlooked,” said senior class officer Priya Patel, who participated in the program last summer. “All of these events and people had significant contributions to Jacksonville, specifically through their support for activism towards the Civil Rights Movement.”

It might not be much, but her saying, “we were very disappointed,” is a lot more than I ever heard Greene say about a lot of terrible things.

So after all that, I asked around, and where I only got a few responses, most, not all, but most were positive.

So what’s my takeaway, I honestly don’t know. She worked for two supers I didn’t think were very good, but for the most part, she has a good reputation with teachers and subordinates. She hasn’t been outspoken on much, and I guess that’s up to you if that’s a good thing or not.  

If anybody knows something I missed, I would love it if you would share.

Some random shots, she has been in education for 37 years, is on the board of Junior Achievement, does have a Twitter account, though it’s dusty, which is probably another good thing, and here is a video of her reading the Pidgeon Wants a Puppy.

1 comment:

  1. She was the principal at Kirby-Smith Middle School years ago. She worked closely with Teri Stahlman for years.