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Flagler Palm Coast High School Principal Bob Wallace Resigns After Just 10 Months

| June 7, 2019

Bob Wallace was at Flagler Palm Coast High School less than a year. (Flagler Schools)

Bob Wallace was at Flagler Palm Coast High School less than a year. (Flagler Schools)

Flagler Palm Coast High School Principal Bob Wallace resigned this morning, less than 10 months after taking over the school’s leadership last August in the wake of the unexpected departure of Dusty Sims a day before the first day of the school year. Sims had taken a regional job with the state Department of Education.

For FPC, Wallace’s departure means the school will have its sixth principal in 14 years by the time school resumes in August. Wallace had been one of four applicants when the positioned opened last August, along with Jason Harrison, Travis Lee and Nickolas Schell. Mike Rinaldi, an assistant principal, is among the names heard as a possible successor this time. The position pays around $90,000.

With Sims, Bill Delbrugge, Jacob Oliva and Lynette Shott, all former principals who went on to higher administrative posts locally or with the state, the FPC principalship has invariably been a stepping stone since 2005. Wallace is an exception.

“I have decided to head back into retirement at the end of this month,” Wallace wrote in an email to school staff this morning, an email that at least hinted at a degree of unhappiness with the job that’s equivalent to running a small city with a population the size of Bunnell’s, at least compared to what he could be doing instead.

“I’ve taken time to reflect on our challenges and successes of the past year and I was looking forward to meeting a new school year head on,” Wallace wrote. “But I’ve also had the chance to look inward and speak with my family. It’s a constantly growing family, with grandchildren spread across the country. A recent Facetime call with my son and his young family inspired me to reevaluate where I was at this juncture in my life. Those grandkids are where my heart truly is.”

Unlike previous principals, Wallace had not scraped his way to the principalship through the system, neither as a teacher nor as a principal or assistant principal locally, as had been the case with every previous principal going back to Delbrugge (who’d been brought in from Georgia.) Tager, himself a former top administrator in Volusia County, brought Wallace out of retirement from there after he’d spent 13 years as principal of Seabreeze High School in Ormond Beach. Wallace had retired in 2015 after 35 years in education.

But it seemed as if Wallace was most heard from, throughout the community, when he’d record robocalls informing parents of security incidents, bomb scares, arrests or threats at the school, culminating in the shooting death of a student, Curtis Gray, on a weekend night away from school in the middle of April. “This past school year was not an easy one for any of us, but you all came together when we, and our students needed us most,” Wallace wrote the staff this morning. But he never seemed to fit in, exactly, or comfortably: he was conspicuously absent from the memorial for Gray in Central Park, for example.

“I have informed Superintendent Tager about my future and he supports me in this decision. He has let me know they will move quickly to find a new leader for FPC so that I can help ease the transition in any way I can,” Wallace concluded. “I value this past year and the friendships and connections I have made walking these halls. I wish you all only the best when you all return in August.”

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13 Responses for “Flagler Palm Coast High School Principal Bob Wallace Resigns After Just 10 Months”

  1. David S. says:

    Surprised he lasted this long school system sucks around here……

  2. Melissa says:

    I think our school system is great. How about you volunteer and obtain an educated opinion.

  3. Lorraine McAdams says:

    So agreed!! FPC has gone so far down the tubes over the past years….to many Indians and no chief!!

  4. Rocco Paffumi says:

    it Is to easy to just say, “The School System Sucks Around Here”. Wouldn’t that be awesome? If only here in Flagler Palm Coast, was where all of the problems were. We could fix that. However, the problems that we face are nation wide, and generational! I have been in education since 1998, and I remember circling around the television with my students as the school news broadcasted “Live Feeds” of Columbine! I also remember being in a room full of students and teachers as we watched the second Airplane fly into the World Trade Center! I had to deal with the numerous news reports of “School Shootings” That were happening across the country, and Florida as well. But do you realize, none of that happened here? These are very scary times in the world of education! However, our “Local School District” has done a great job responding to all sorts of “Threats” and other dangerous situations that seems to plague other parts of our country! Instead of putting us down, how about you do your part! Everyone loves to complain, and point out all of the bad stuff in education. How about giving “Credit Where Credit Is Due”? We have done much better than some of the unfortunate school districts across the nation!

  5. Diane says:

    Principals do not want to go down with the sinking ship …… FPC can offer the world …. but it’s still a poorly run school district . Any School administrator will not want this school to define their legacy . Flagler BOE better make some big big changes ……….

  6. Karen Mineau says:

    I don’t know why they keep hiring people from outside our county when we have some excellent teachers here that a very capable of the position. We have already had people at the vice principal level that have been run out that we’re awesome at what they do. Hire within our district. Give the jobs to people here that have to support their families and love our kids. You give someone outside the district the job when he was already retired and take away some excellent people here..

  7. Agkistrodon says:

    Perhaps if they would stop allowing problem students, 19 plus year old adults to remain as students, and students who really do NOT want to be there, the faculty might have a easier time handling the students who are there to actually learn. I grew up in San Jose Ca, If you were a problem, you were removed never to return. That was in the 80’s. Students ‘toe the line” if they know they will be held ACCOUNTABLE. You put someone in charge, but put “shackles” on their abilities. Good Luck finding a Leader, that will lead under those circumstances.

  8. Optimist says:

    I love reading comments about education by fellow readers that don’t know the difference between the preposition “to,” and the adverb, “too.” Also, using “…….” as punctuation? Let’s all put forth a little more effort, shall we? Lol.

  9. Mary Fusco says:

    Agkistrodon, AGREE. Kid today are disrespectful, rude and undisciplined. My children went to school in the 80’s and if you did not toe the line you were definitely removed, never to be seen again. It didn’t matter how loud the parents screamed and yelled. Today parents are on social media bashing everyone because they did not raise their little darling correctly. My daughter was a teacher but left the profession. Her reason was that she was afraid because kids are so violent, you don’t teach anymore. You discipline, feed, medicate, counsel – all he things parents should be doing but are not. Get rid of all the undisciplined trouble makers and make school a pleasant experience for those that want to learn. Let the parents of the trouble makers pay for private schooling, if a private school will even take them.

  10. Seabreeze Staff says:

    We are extremely happy for this man to begin enjoying his retirement and his new grandparent status. However, we are also disappointed that the staff of Flagler Palm Coast High School and the surrounding community will never get to know the full value of this man’s ability to lead and serve the students and staff of their institution as we have here at Seabreeze High School and in the Volusia County School system. His wisdom, insight, and tough-love approach is greatly needed in our educational world. We wish him all the best. June Alexander Bigham Ruthie Labno Jeanette Mazzola Oberst Lisa Cripps Botkin Dana Kelder Silvernail Jennifer Windfelder Schwartz Paula Maloney Schaack Erika Uniowski Scott Annette Bucemi Cinelli Lawrence Temple Jr Marshall Bradley Buffy M. Briggs Leah Paul Concetta Lee Ellen McGrory Aaron Goldstone Kurt AndCharlene Greer Pamela Baird Mengel Krissy Butrico Jennifer Mollo Kassie Price Marc Beach

  11. Agkistrodon says:

    Or maybe a “nice” day.

  12. Flagler County Resident and Seabreeze Alumni says:

    Bob Wallace is an amazing man and leader. He was my principal many years ago and I have always looked up to him. He is very fair, honest, consistent and an overall great person! Although I do not blame him for heading back to retirement, I am sad for all the students who will miss out on all he has to offer. I hope they find a strong leader to replace him! Thanks for all your years of service to our education system Mr. Wallace! We will miss you!

  13. Laura Hannan says:

    Mr. Wallace was an upstanding administrator who supported teachers, coaches, students, and everyone “behind the red gates”. He was/is rare find in today’s field. Mr. Wallace was truly the best administrator I (and many other teachers) ever worked for. As a Flagler resident I was excited to see him enter FPHC with his years of experience & vision, knowing he had the skills to bring FPHC up to its fullest potential, like he did during his tenure at Seabreeze. However, I also know he values family as he treated everyone under his leadership as an extension of his own. I pray he may enjoy many more wonderful years and that those remaining in education continue his legacy!

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