At the dedication of the street bearing her name, Dr. Rosann Sidener began her speech by saying “I don’t know who came up with the name to call it a ‘WAY’, instead of a ‘Place’ or a ‘Street’ or a ‘Court,’ but I love the idea that it’s a ‘Way’. The Rosann Sidener Way. It’s not my way; it’s the Beach High Way.”
“The Beach High Way is putting kids first,” she continued. “[It] is celebrating diversity. The Beach High Way is to make sure every child gets the same dream, the same opportunity, the same support and the same education. When you come out here and see Dr. Rosann Sidener Way, don’t think about Rosann Sidener, think about Way. We illuminate the way.”
Dr. Rosann Sidener Way dedication took place on December 13, 2012. John Donohue, the temporary principal at Miami Beach Senior High School, began the dedication with introductions of the city officials who were present. Among the guests were Dr. Martin Karp, Vice Chair of the School Board of Miami Dade County; Alberto Carvalho, Superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools; Jerry Libbin, City Commissioner and President & CEO of the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce; Alan Lips, current Chairman of the Board of the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce and Aaron Perry, former Chairman of the Board of the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce.
Dr. Karp spoke about a few of Dr Sidener’s accomplishments while at Miami Beach Senior High, which included “soaring academic grades, positive energy on campus, new programs and renewed interest among parents.”
Alberto Carvalho described Dr. Sidener as “the perfect balance of skill and will, the wisdom, the knowledge balanced with the heart, the passion and compassion to do all that’s right for students and parents.” He went on to say that “Dr. Rosann Sidener embodies the model that rising tides lift all ships, in this instance rising high tides lift all of our morals, our hopes and aspirations.” He concluded his speech by telling her that “This little corner of the universe will forever be known as your way.”
Alan Lips made remarks from the Chamber’s perspective. “As part of our mission at the Chamber, we are about improving the quality of life for all of the community here around us. In doing so, we have an education foundation. Just this past year, we presented Dr. Sidener with a community service award, which is truly a distinguished award. I am proud to say that it is through the leadership of our Chamber, specifically our past chairman, Aaron Perry, who came up with the idea to name this way Dr. Rosann Sidener Way.”
It was mentioned that under her guidance the graduation rate at Beach High went from 63 percent to 75 percent, she was heard to comment “not high enough”, showing that her aspirations for the students’ success is immeasurable.
Jerry Libbin presented the proclamation on behalf of Mayor Matti Bower and the city commission, dedicating December 13, 2012 as Dr. Rosann Sidener Way Day.
Dr. Rosann Sidener, a University of Miami Frost School of Music alumna who received her doctorate degree at Columbia University, was appointed principal of Miami Beach Senior High in April 2007 and is credited with bringing the school’s academic performance from a letter “D” to a letter “A” by the state of Florida. Dr. Sidener has made Miami Beach Senior High School one of the best schools in Miami-Dade County by introducing new programs such as the International Baccalaureate School in March of 2010 and the Scholars Academy. These initiatives have given Beach High a new academic standing, along with a new image after the completion of a lengthy renovation process and incorporation of student uniforms .
Dr. Sidener has a passion as an educator, having worked in several institutions in the Miami-Dade County Public School system, with experience ranging from assistant principal and principal in various Miami-Dade communities from West Kendall to Little Havana, Overtown and Miami Beach. Dr. Sidener was selected as the 2012 Florida Association of School Administrators’ (FASA) Principal of the Year and was recognized by the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce with the Jan Pfeiffer Distinguished Service Award.