BOE discusses upcoming superintendent search
by Chris Norwood
Jan 16, 2014 | 1246 views |  0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
TALLADEGA - The City Board of Education reached some consensus on several aspects of their upcoming superintendent search Thursday during their second work session in as many days. Since the board did not go into a formal meeting, however, all of the decisions reached Thursday will still have to be put to a vote during the next regular board meeting Feb. 10.

The board heard a lengthy presentation Wednesday from Susan Salter of the Alabama Association of School Boards, and agreed to hire AASB to conduct the search for the successor to Superintendent Doug Campbell. The board has worked with AASB on past searches, as well as with at least one local law firm. The board agreed that they did not want to conduct the search directly, since the applications would become public as soon as they were submitted. By using an outside agency, the applications do not become public until the finalists are announced and the board prepares to conduct interviews.

Salter said AASB conducts three levels of search, which are priced accordingly. For $6,000, the board gets a statewide search with on-line questionnaires for public input. For $8,500, AASB would conduct a search covering the southeastern United States and would conduct a series of community meetings which generally draw no more than 70 people total. A nationwide search would run $12,000.

The board opted for the statewide search, and agreed to conduct public inquiries of their own. Up to five people will be allowed to address the board for no more than three minutes during the February and March meetings, after submitting their questions in writing to the central office.

After reviewing all applications, AASB will select five finalists who will be interviewed by the board. Those interviews will be open to the public, and will be videotaped for those who are unable to attend in person.

The board also agreed the priorities and challenges for the new superintendent will include school consolidation, helping low achieving and income students catch up, addressing dropping enrollment, communicating with all stakeholders and fewer lawsuits, especially regarding special education students.

The job description will say a doctorate is preferred, but only a master’s is required. The candidate will be required to move to Talladega County, if not the city of Talladega, and, if they have school age children, will have to send them to public schools. Seemingly contradictory statements about prior administrative experience were not fully resolved.

The board will also be revisiting the idea of joint meetings with the Talladega City Council.

To submit a question regarding the new superintendent search, please write down your question and send it to the Talladega City Board of Education, PO Box 946, Talladega, Al, 35160. Please include your name and a contact number.

Contact Chris Norwood at cnorwood@dailyhome.com