Archive for Thursday, January 30, 2003

Board nearing decision in superintendent search

January 30, 2003

The De Soto USD 232 Board of Education is near a decision in its search of a successor to retiring Superintendent Marilyn Layman.

Board President Bill Waye said Monday he expected a decision by mid-week. But by late Tuesday, he said no decision would be made before Monday's Board meeting.

Waye and fellow Board members Curtis Allendbrand and Sandy Thierer agreed, however, that the Board is closing in on a difficult decision after a four-hour special meeting Monday.

Last month, the Board agreed it would first look to replace Layman with current district administrators. The Board has had a number of special meetings in January devoted to interviewing applicants and discussing the superintendent opening.

Waye wouldn't comment on what the Board decision would be -- it could either promote an internal candidate or decide to start a nationwide search.

Comments by other Board members, however, indicated the Board would promote from within.

"This is the toughest decision I've had in all my years on the Board," Allenbrand said. "We have a couple of very qualified candidates."

The Board isn't releasing the names of applicants, but Assistant Bill Gilhaus made public his candidacy. Another possible candidate, Deputy Superintendent Sharon Zoellner, will not comment on her interest.

Thierer, too, said it was one of the hardest decisions she's had to make as a Board member because of its long-term consequences for the district. She conceded the Board's decision would probably cost the Board a valued administrator, especially with other superintendent vacancies in nearby districts.

"We know we have people who are extremely qualified and looking to move in that direction," she said "If we didn't hire quality people, we wouldn't have to worry about them leaving."

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