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School Board to begin search for new superintendent

The King George School Board kicked off its search for a new superintendent this week opting to select the Virginia School Boards Association (VSBA) to assist with its services to recruit superintendent candidates. The unanimous action took place at Monday’s meeting on Jan. 23.
VSBA’s cost is set at $7,500 plus expenses. That base fee of $7,500 is set according to the student enrollment of the division. Additional expenses are estimated at between $1,000 and $2,000 and would include such things as costs for travel, mailings, telephone calls and

advertising.

Following the unanimous action, chairman Mike Rose directed clerk Sheryl Bushrod to
set up a meeting with VSBA so they could start the search, “as soon as possible.”

Later in the meeting, Rose also said that the school community and the public would be involved in the process. “We’re going to be putting surveys out and we will have sessions where we can come and meet for town hall meetings, those kinds of things.”

Rose added, “We’re going to try to work to get the word out, so we get everybody’s input - teachers, parents, community members - so we can work together to find that person that we want for our next superintendent.”

VSBA was among three companies providing quotes for superintendent search services. The other two were Education Leadership, Inc. priced at $8,075 and McPherson & Jacobson LLC for $12,500.

VSBA’s literature indicates that its services include seven tasks. Task one would include an initial meeting of VSBA staff with the School Board to discuss search procedures and schedules.
Task two will include developing a profile for a new superintendent. VSBA will provide guidelines that can be used to develop the profile. This includes provision of a survey that can be distributed to school staff, community groups, the library and other institutions, as well as being published in the local newspaper.

Task three is for VSBA staff to monitor the search process closely in order to ensure the quality and number of candidates meets the School Board’s standards and expectations. The monitoring is also to ensure that no violations of state and/or federal law take place.

Task four provides screening of candidates. Initial screening of applicant’s files will be performed by VSBA on the basis of School Board-approved criteria.

Task five provides for recommendations by VSBA that best meet the School Board’s criteria. VSBA notes those recommendations would be provided following initial screening and intensive telephoning. The recommendations by VSBA is to ensure that those candidates are qualified on all objective criteria set by the School Board. The VSBA will lead the School Board through a process to assist it to make its choices of which candidates to interview.

Task six is to prepare interview instruments. VSBA notes that the goal of this task is to develop an “acceptable, evenhanded, and comprehensive format” for the interviews with selected candidates. This is to assist the School Board to elicit the information it needs from each candidate while retaining enough flexibility to allow for free discussion during interviews.

Task seven is to continue to advise the School Board on procedures during the interview and screening process until a new superintendent is employed.

VSBA’s literature also indicates that it will assist the School Board, “in securing candidates who best satisfy the board’s criteria without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, handicap or disability.”

It also states, “Decisions concerning the nature and form of the process, the qualifications of, and review of applicants, and the ultimate selection of the superintendent must be made by the School Board.”

Phyllis Cook

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