Vacant since the end of September, Wake County school board is closer to naming a new superintendent.
McPherson & Jacobson, an executive recruitment and development service, leads the search in finding the right candidate for the position.
Three days of public forums were held in March. Residents were invited to help determine leadership characteristics of the next superintendent. Forums were divided into interest group: Elected officials, business community, parents, employee leadership, student leaders, multicultural community and African-American community. A separate session was held for the general public.
“We try to match a district with the skills, abilities and personalities that best [match] the situation in that district,” said John Smith, a consultant with McPherson & Jacobson. “Through the community sessions, we hope to get from you some information that will help us to build a model for the kind of individual that will be best suited for this school system.”
Addressing strengths and weaknesses of the school systems, educators and community groups voiced their concerns and aspirations. The qualities defined by the school board, community groups and the general public helped determine a list of candidates.
During a closed session on May 8, the board met with McPherson and Jacobson to review a “short list” of the top seven candidates selected by the firm. Twenty-three applied.The list to four semifinalists.
Board Chairman Keith Sutton describes the four as “veteran educators, all working in leadership positions.”
Board members plan to conduct personal interviews May 14 and 15 before choosing finalists at the end of May.
A new superintendent will be named by July 1. The date could be modified depending on the top candidate's availability.