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Special Houston School Board meeting - search for superintendent

By Angie Rodenburg

Fri, Oct 25th, 2013
Posted in All Education

The search for an interim superintendent is in full force for the Houston School Board. On October 22, the school board held a special meeting to select candidates that would go forward in the interview process based on their applications and resumes.

The school board had six candidates that applied; however, one of the candidates did not have the proper licensure needed to fill the position. The rest of the candidates were well-qualified and many of the School Board members made mention of how they were pleased with the quality of the candidates.

In the meeting, candidate names were kept confidential and each candidate was referenced by alphabetic assignment.

Candidate “A” was well received by the majority of the School Board. The candidate had business experience, superintendent experience and had a strong track record in student achievement and scores.

Candidate “B” was a strong candidate. The candidate had 16 years of experience as a superintendent. The candidate also has a doctorate degree and has been a professor. The school board thought his experience and technical skills could be a great asset to Houston Schools.

Candidate “C” did not have the proper licensure needed in order to fill the role as superintendent.

Candidate “D” was favored by many of the school board members, although the candidate did not fill out the school’s online application. Candidate “D” also had superintendent experience.

Candidate “E” was also a strong candidate with experience and a doctorate degree. There was concern that the candidate was “over-qualified” and may see Houston Schools as a stepping stone versus a potential place to have a career. Some board members reminded the Board that they did only post for an interim and that they would be going through this whole process again soon.

Candidate “F” had a lot of good experience, but did not stand out to any of the school board members.

After discussion, the school board decided to offer candidates “A”, “B”, “E”, and “D” an interview. They will be conducting interviews on October 29 and 30 and will decide after the interviews if they will have a second round of interviews.

The school board contacted the candidates on October 23 to set up interview times. All of the candidates accepted the opportunity to interview, thereby releasing the names of the candidates to the public.

The candidates receiving interviews are as follows:

•Dr. Laura VanDuyn, Executive Director of Contra Costa County Office of Education in Concord, Calif.

•G. Joe Guanella - Former Superintendent/Principal of Lyle Public Schools and Alden-Conger Schools in Minnesota.

•Steven Thomas – Former Superintendent of Alanson Public Schools in Alanson, Mich.

•Dr. Charles Rick – Former Superintendent of St. Louis County Schools in Virginia, Minn.

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