Clark-Pleasant’s school board has created a timeline for selecting the school district’s new leader and is nearly ready to begin recruiting candidates.
This month the board is finishing writing the application and brochure it’ll send to candidates, giving them more information about the school district and the qualities members are looking for. In December, those materials will be sent to the Indiana School Board Association, Indiana Department of Education and other organizations where prospective candidates can find them.
The board will accept applications from candidates through January and begin conducting interviews in March. Final interviews will happen a month later, and members want to name Clark-Pleasant’s new leader in May.
Residents were asked to attend a board meeting on Tuesday to provide comments and perspective about what they wanted in a new leader, who will oversee about 270 teachers and the education of more than 6,000 students. But no residents asked to speak on the subject at the meeting.
Residents also could complete a survey and submit suggestions online about the superintendent search through the school district’s website. The board received three comments through the website but hasn’t had a chance to review them yet, board member E. Curtis Harris said.
When Clark-Pleasant hired its previous superintendent, Kevin Caress, in 2009, more than 30 people completed an online survey, and several hundred letters were sent to the school district during the search.
Harris said the board doesn’t plan to reschedule time for public discussion on the search during future meetings, nor will any candidate interviews be conducted in public. That would put candidates from other school districts in an awkward position, Harris said.
“It would cause (our) candidate pool to shrink because people don’t want that out,” he said.
Under Indiana’s Open Door Law, school boards are allowed to meet in executive session to receive information about and interview prospective employees, including candidates for superintendents. But the board must make the name of their final selection public before approving the new hire, according to Dale Brewer, legal assistant to Indiana’s public access counselor.
The board has been looking for a replacement for Caress, who announced his resignation during the summer and left the school district earlier this month. Becky Courtney-Knight is Clark-Pleasant’s interim superintendent until the end of the school year.