Superintendent Search Continues

UPDATE (Aug. 8, 2019)
The Suffolk School Board is working with the Virginia School Boards Association to complete a national search for a new Superintendent.

The Suffolk City School Board will conduct interviews for the position of Superintendent, at an undisclosed location, from August 14, 2019 through August 28, 2019. These interviews will be held in accordance with the Code of Virginia Section 2.2-3712.

The School Board reviewed applications with VSBA staff at a special meeting on August 7, 2019. VSBA shared the following information on the applicants:

Of 41 inquiries, there were 36 full applications.

EXPERIENCE:

  • 16 current/former superintendents
  • 11 assistant/associate/deputy superintendents
  • 5 central office administrators   
  • 3 principal/building level administrators
  • 1 other


11 Virginia applicants  

25 out-of-state applicants:
PA (3); NC (3); FL (2); GA (2); MD (2); MO (2); TN (2); CT (1); IN (1); KY (1); MA (1); NJ (1); OH (1); OR (1); PR (1); TX (1)

27 men; 9 women  


The board asked for public input in a survey and a public hearing the last week of June. 

Survey Results – Cumulative Report
A breakdown of each type of respondent can be found at https://esb.spsk12.net/  From the calendar icon, select the date June 26, 2019, then open the agenda item “Superintendent Search: Qualifications for a new School Superintendent.”

At a special meeting on June 26, the board established the following qualifications for the next superintendent of Suffolk Public Schools:

  • If selected, residency in the school division is required.
  • Experience as a principal is required.
  • Experience as a central office administrator is preferred.
  • Experience as an associate/assistant superintendent is preferred.
  • Experience as a superintendent is preferred.
  • An earned doctorate is preferred.

Leadership and Management Skills – The successful candidate is a team player who is comfortable with shared decision-making, a visionary, creative thinker, and a decisive leader.

Personal Characteristics – The successful candidate is a good listener, accessible, consistent, caring, and confident.

Board-Superintendent Relations – The successful candidate effectively mediates and accommodates different perspectives, understands difference between policy and administration and acts accordingly, and provides options and recommendations to Board before accepting Board directives.

Staff Relations – The successful candidate creates an atmosphere of trust and mutual respect, maintains open channels of communication to and from staff, supports staff development activities, encourages professional growth, and sets a good example for staff members.

Community Relations – The successful candidate effectively advocates school issues and needs, communicates effectively on both private and public levels, responds to individual concerns in an appropriate manner, and promotes business and community involvement in schools.

School Finance – The successful candidate lobbies for school funding on behalf of the school division, develops and explains the rationale for the budget to the board and local officials, and offers creative funding solutions.

Areas of Expertise – The successful candidate has expertise in curriculum and instruction, school reform (e.g. strategic planning, total quality management, etc.), budget and finance, school improvement, and student achievement.

Next Steps:
– July 1 to August 2 — Superintendent application process open

– Wednesday, August 7 — School Board to meet with VSBA, which would go into closed session to discuss specific candidates … 11 a.m. at the College and Career Academy at Pruden.

– August/September — Anticipated first interviews with Superintendent candidates

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