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Public shows interest in hiring superintendent

POSTED: February 8, 2008 5:02 a.m.
The Liberty County Board of Education asked for comments via the Internet on hiring a new school superintendent. And they got them, almost 200 of them.
After seven structured questions, respondents to the online survey were asked, “What other considerations do you view as crucial in the selection of the superintendent?”
The answers varied widely. Some comments were brief and specific. Some were broad. Many called for communication, people skills and leadership.
One of the first comments received recommended “a panel of folks to review final applicants,” an approach the BoE has not discussed.
Points of view differed. One response called for a superintendent to “stand behind teachers.” Another said, “Put students first.” A third said, “Communicate with parents . . . not judge by teachers.” And “listen to principals.”
Emphasizing leadership, one respondent said the new school chief should, “not follow the whims of a community that wants to stay rooted in the past.”   
No identifying data was retained on those contributing to the survey. The responses are merely numbered.
Number 13 called for a superintendent who is “fair, impartial, non-racial.” Comment 169 was a single word, “black.”
Others called for “equal opportunity,” and “that he/she be a minority, a person of color.”
Opinions ranged widely on the geographical origins of the best candidate for superintendent. Many wanted a resident of Georgia and some would hire only a resident of Liberty County.
Alternatively, one remark said, “We need to hire someone from the outside so he or she will be less likely to be influenced by current personnel, board members or other factors in the community.” And another: “I think he or she should come from outside of Liberty. We need a new vision.
Many comments emphasized academic excellence. Several followed along the lines of one stressing “the importance of athletics to the community.”
The board has called a meeting for Tuesday morning to review applications for the superintendent’s job.

 

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