Community outreach to begin this month on search for school district superintendents RSF

An educator with a vision of student excellence, an effective communicator and collaborator, a community leader – these are just a few of the qualifications that will be listed on the Rancho Santa Fe School District job posting for his next superintendent.

At the board’s Nov. 10 meeting, they set a timeline for its accelerated search process and refined job advertisement criteria, aiming to potentially select a new superintendent by February with a March start date. to July.

Superintendent Donna Tripi announced her intention to step down at the end of the school year, but would leave sooner if a replacement was found.

The council superintendent search will be led by William Huyett of McPherson and Jacobson, a retired educator who served as a teacher and administrator for 38 years in Northern California. Huyett plans to begin advertising for the position next week, followed by community engagement, including an online survey and stakeholder meetings Nov. 28-30.

Small group stakeholder meetings will include teachers, classified personnel, union leaders, students, the Rancho Santa Fe Education Foundation, parents and community members. At least two open forums will also be organised. Huyett said the same questions will be asked to each group: what are the good things about your community and your school, what skills and attributes are sought in the next school leader, and what issues the next superintendent should. to know.

“Our theme is transparency. We really think that’s very important during this process,” Huyett said. “Every school district has problems. You have a wonderful school here, a wonderful group of kids, and a great community…it’s an opportunity to find the right leader for you and to air issues openly.

Vice President Annette Ross said it was important that all parents have a say in this process. As one parent said in a public comment, stakeholders should include people who are unhappy with the school: “Conversations can be uncomfortable, but it’s the only way to make change .”

The closing date for applications will be January 11, followed by selection and interviews with the board of the top candidates on January 23. McPherson and Jacobson also encourage the use of a stakeholder panel to be part of the interview process. The proposed 15-member panel, made up of an equal split of staff and parents and one student, will conduct a very structured interview of candidates – they do not rank candidates or make recommendations, but can offer the board what which they see as strengths and concerns.

In the past, the district has not hired people with superintendent experience. Dr Roger Rowe was superintendent for 37 years before longtime teacher Lindy Delaney took over for 12 years – his successor David Jaffe and Tripi had only been principals before being hired.

Trustee John Tree said the board didn’t want anyone learning on the job and trustee Rose Rohatgi agreed, “The school really needs to have really good leadership.” Since the majority of the board wanted someone with experience, they added a requirement to the job description for a candidate with three years of experience as superintendent or assistant superintendent.

The job description will also include the board’s intent for a superintendent who plans to stay on for at least five years: “We’re not looking for a temporary band-aid,” Tree said.

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