Who would want to be superintendent of the controversy-plagued Hamburg Central School District?
At least 19 people, it turns out.
These are educators who applied to be superintendent of Hamburg Central School District when the School Board solicited for candidates.
As disagreements flourished on the School Board, attendance at board meetings grew and a parents’ group emerged to push for the removal of three board members, many parents and board members remarked that it might not be the best atmosphere to be searching for a new superintendent.
But the School Board reviewed the 19 applications last week. After a lengthy discussion in executive session last Thursday and some preliminary background checks by its search consultant, the board decided there are seven candidates it wants to interview, Board President David Yoviene said.
Those interviews will take place Jan. 29 and 30, and then the board will reduce the number of candidates to three finalists. The interviews of the finalists will take place Feb. 3, 4 and 5.
When they come in for the second round of interviews, the candidates will tour the district and then be interviewed by 15 members of a group with representatives of students, parents, teachers, administrators, support staff, and community members.
Later in the day, the board will conduct its second interviews with the final three candidates. The board may visit the home districts of some of the finalists, and is expected to select the new superintendent in February. Under the timetable the board is following, there would be some time to negotiate a contract before the board announces the selection of a new superintendent.
Hamburg has been without a permanent superintendent since Steven Achramovitch announced his retirement at the end of June, and then was put on administrative leave until his retirement date in August. Richard E. Jetter, the assistant superintendent for human resources and technology, was named interim superintendent.
Of the 19 candidates for the job, four are from out of state. The group includes superintendents, assistant superintendents, principals, and coordinators, according to Yoviene.
The qualities the board is looking for, according to its brochure, include outstanding written and oral communication skills, the ability to clearly identify problems and develop effective solutions with a commitment to involving staff, parents, students and the community in decision-making. The successful candidate also should be of unquestioned integrity, show evidence of success in implementing financial practices and be capable of developing communication plans that build support for the district’s mission and goals, according to the board’s brochure soliciting candidates.