The Klamath County School Board and its Superintendent Selection Committee have begun looking over eight applications to be the new superintendent after Greg Thede retires at the end of this school year. They plan to conduct interviews from March 13 through15 and then select finalists at that time. A public forum with the finalists will happen in April.
On Thursday, Feb. 22, the board and committee trained on how to evaluate applications for those seeking the job of KCSD superintendent. Superintendent Greg Thede is retiring at the end of the 2017-18 school year and the board has been engaged in the process of finding a new superintendent since October.
The board received applications from Dec. 22 to Feb. 16. It received eight applications total.
The selection committee is made up of 19 citizen members, including staff, teachers and members of the public. It also includes the five-member school board. Steve Kelley, the Oregon School Boards Association consultant aiding in the search, conducted the training Thursday. He told those present their evaluation would be subjective, and the process is meant to work that way.
“It’s impossible to quantify or be completely objective so we all come up with the same thing. That’s why there’s so many of you in the room,” he said. “With your collective wisdom, with your collective perspective, the cream always rises to the top. Your cream for your district is different than other districts. Because you know what you’re looking for.”
All applying candidates are confidential until the board selects finalists in mid-March. The board and selection committee members are not able to comment or discuss candidates outside of executive session meetings, which are also confidential.
Kelley noted the number of applications was lower than expected, given the district searched nationwide for candidates. However, he said he is not concerned because of the depth of the candidates who applied.
The board and committee will confidentially evaluate the applications this week. On March 1, the board and committee will meet to select candidates to interview.
The board and committee are using the qualities and qualifications the public identified through a series of meetings and online surveys to evaluate the candidates.
“This is really at the heart of what we do,” Kelley said. “It’s the lens we use to look at the paperwork. It’s the lens we use during the interviews, and sight visits, and reference checks, and finalist forum.”
The board will conduct interviews March 13 through15 and select finalists at that time. Only those finalists’ names will be made public at that time.
The finalist forum, which will include visiting schools and outreach to the community, will take place April 3 and 4. The board expects to vote to hire a candidate on April 12. The new superintendent will begin work on July 1.