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Search committee formed to find next Columbia County school superintendent

Posted: September 25, 2012 - 9:02pm  |  Updated: September 30, 2012 - 12:07am
Columbia County School Board attorney Pete Fletcher hands out paperwork to members of the committee appointed to search for a new school superintendent.   Photo by Jenna Martin
Photo by Jenna Martin
Columbia County School Board attorney Pete Fletcher hands out paperwork to members of the committee appointed to search for a new school superintendent.

A newly-formed committee tasked with finding the next Columbia County school superintendent set guidelines Tuesday for the upcoming search.

The 14-person committee consists of Columbia County Board of Education members, five community members and three principals representing each school level. Incoming School Board District 1 member David Dekle also will serve on the committee.

In addition to Dekle, the panel includes school board members Regina Buccafusco, Mike Sleeper, Wayne Bridges, Kristi Baker and Roxanne Whitaker; Columbia County Administrator Scott Johnson; Carl Bethune, Robert Bissell, Beth Frits and Gary Holley; and Evans Elementary School Principal Naesha Parks, Stallings Island Middle School Principal Don Putnam and Harlem High School Principal Dietmar Perez.

While the Board of Education will be responsible for interviewing candidates, the other nine committee members will review candidate applications and pass along recommendations, said school board attorney Pete Fletcher.

“They have a right to look at those applications and evaluate them for you, and using those results will help y’all narrow them down,” he said. “That’s what their primary role will be.”

All meetings will be open to the public unless the group discusses a specific candidate by name, Fletcher said.

As of Monday, six candidates had applied to replace Charles Nagle, who announced in July that he would retire after the current school year.

The committee will meet next on Oct. 11 to decide on interview questions and a rating method for candidates.

Applications will be accepted through Oct. 17 and the board hopes to name a finalist by mid-December.

Also at the meeting, Nagle announced that school officials are looking at adding more time between May 25 commencement ceremonies and creating a more uniform format for ceremonies. The proposed day would run longer than in the past.

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Comments (3)

Riverman1

Questions

It's a good article and, sounds fine and I'm not really complaining, but you know how I like to point out things. WHO picked the committee? The non-BOE members can't even ask the candidates questions? Plus they have no voting power for the selection? Lastly, the public is invited, but has to leave if a candidate is discussed by name? How in the world can the committee not discuss candidates by name? If I went there and was asked to leave soon as the meeting began, I'd just as soon they had not said the public was invited.

Barry Paschal

It's according to state law

They're following state law. Only school board members are allowed to interview candidates. The plan is for the candidates to be numbered so other committee members can discuss them in the public meetings by number rather than name. The committee memebers were picked by the board; initially, David Dekle, plus each member picked someone. Then they added three school-level representatives.

It's cumbersome, but the board attorney walked them through the process in far more mind-numbing details than could be conveyed in a story.

Riverman1

Thanks, that was helpful.

Thanks, that was helpful.

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