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Houston School Board approves MSHSL grant submission


By Angie Rodenburg

Fri, Feb 7th, 2014
Posted in All Education

The Houston School Board held a meeting on February 3. At the meeting the board approved board committee assignments and approved sending requests for auditing services proposals to four different firms.

Casey Indra, Houston’s athletic director, requested that the school board approve the submission of the MSHSL Foundation Grant. The grant will supply Houston High School coaches with books and other materials that will aid in their coaching. Indra has requested $3,800 from the Foundation, but the total amount awarded will be decided by the Foundation. The board approved the submission of the grant.

Interim Superintendent Rick had met with each of the board members from January 27-30 to discuss their thoughts and questions in their search for a permanent superintendent. The board hoped to glean knowledge about the role and characteristics to look for in a candidate from seasoned Interim Superintendent Rick. Rick highlighted the themes and concerns the board members had and presented them.

Rick also directed the school board by saying if the board hopes to move forward in the process for hiring a new superintendent that they need to post the position immediately. If the school board decides to continue with an interim superintendent, then they should begin discussing extending the interim superintendent agreement through June 30, 2015.

There was a lot of discussion among the school board members in regards to which path would be most beneficial to take. School board member Mimi Carlson felt they could benefit from extending Interim Superintendent Rick’s contract, reminding the board of Rick’s experience with school organizational structure. One of the primary concerns of the board is the organizational structure and collaboration between Houston Public School and Minnesota Virtual Academy.

School board member Gary Wilson also favored extending Rick’s contract, saying Rick has a wealth of experience and they could reap the benefits of it.

There was concern that there is too little time to find a great long-term candidate with all the work that is still left to be done in the search process. In addition, the board had a hard time agreeing on what characteristics they were looking for in a new superintendent in general. Some thought giving more time for the superintendent search would be preferable and extending Rick’s contract would supply adequate time.

Not everyone was in favor of extending Rick’s contract and delaying the superintendent search. School board member Kevin Kelleher said, “We might not all agree a year from now anyway.”

None of the school board members seemed to know quite what the right answer would be. The board felt the discussion was productive though and gave them food for thought. They will discuss further and make a decision at the next school board meeting.

The next school board meeting will be held on Tuesday, February 18 at the Houston High School Library.

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