Outgoing Miami-Dade Public Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho distributed almost 1,000 meals Sunday as he nears the end of his time in South Florida before going to Los Angeles.
During the event, which was held in collaboration with Farm Share, Carvalho became emotional after a semi-truck was dedicated to his work, mission, and now, legacy.
“Deeply touched, a very emotional moment for me,” Carvalho said.
Carvalho’s commitment to making sure families have food on the table is admirable, Farm Shares’ marketing director, Gil Zepeda said.
Get South Florida local news, weather forecasts and entertainment stories to your inbox. Sign up for NBC South Florida newsletters.
“Today’s event ended the way that it started, with the great tradition of our superintendent coming out to the community and being boots on the ground and passing out food to our children. We don’t dedicate many trucks and we certainly have never dedicated a truck to a single individual,” Zepeda said.
Carvalho told NBC 6 about how it felt knowing that his work would still continue in South Florida although he’ll be thousands of miles away.
“I couldn’t ask for anything more than that. That beyond my days here and there is a memory and a legacy that endures but a legacy that benefits not me but the people who I always wanted to touch, the people I always wanted to educate, to support, to feed, to love. So the fact that it will continue is the greatest testament to the work that I’ve done here over the past 14 years,” Carvalho said.
Carvalho also added that food insecurity is a real problem in South Florida, a problem that only worsened with the pandemic.
“Over the past two years we made a decision that no child, no family would go hungry on our watch,” Carvalho said. “And we have passed out hundreds of thousands of meals, gift cards for grocery stores for people to get what they need.”
Event attendees said Carvalho is leaving big shoes to fill as he heads to the second largest school district in the country. Carvalho commented on the search for his replacement.
“I hope that the right person, with the right heart and the right mind is selected now or in a near future,” Carvalho said. “It is sad to see the controversy that has evolved. It did not need to happen.”
The search is now down to three top contenders, Dr. Jose Dotres, Jacob Oliva and Dr. Rafaela Espinal. All three have experience as either a superintendent or deputy superintendent.
The board has not set a date yet for the public meeting for the candidates to interview.