Superintendent Search Profile to be Revealed
Marvin Edwards of the Illinois search firm Hazard, Young, Attea and Associates conducted interviews in 18 one-hour sessions on Oct. 11 and 12. The district’s nine board members each got an hour and the balance was for groups including staff and community organizations. On Oct. 11, Edwards conducted a public forum open to anyone, attracting parents, community activists, clergy, retired teachers and former school board members.
Edwards also collected survey forms that contained 14 qualities for respondents to rank in order of importance.
The forms will be analyzed and Edwards said he would develop an executive summary from the interviews and forum, which he will present at 8 p.m. Monday (Oct. 29) in the Plainfield High School auditorium.
The profile of qualities will then be used to screen candidates in a process that the firm says is politics-proof. Candidates will be matched anonymously to the desired profile to come up with five finalists. After the New Year, the school board will interview the five finalists to select three, then one finalist.
The need for a new superintendent arose in June when former Schools Superintendent Paula Howard abruptly resigned and the board immediately accepted her resignation. At the time, the board was trying to fill the vacancy created when school board secretary/business administrator Victor Demming resigned as of June 1.
At an unusual Friday night emergency meeting June 8, the board hired Peter E. Carter as interim superintendent and then Carter recommended Michael Donow to replace Demming, which the board also accepted. Carter and Donow were on the job June 11, beginning what Carter likes to call the “post-6/11” chapter of the Plainfield district’s history.
The new superintendent may be approved as early as February and is expected to take over when Carter leaves at the end of the 2007-08 school year in June. As chief school administrator, that person will deal with issues including possible decreases in state Abbott funding, improvements needed to overcome faults found in state monitoring and replacement of numerous interim administrators.