School board finalizes superintendent search plan

Published 4:08 pm Wednesday, May 15, 2019

The Jefferson Davis County School Board met Monday night for its
regular monthly meeting at the Academic Success Center in Carson.
Executive director of the Mississippi School Boards Association, Dr.
Michael Waldrop, addressed the board regarding the superintendent
search for Jefferson Davis County.
The school board approved the hiring of the MSBA to assist in the JDC
superintendent search in its March meeting.
This will be the first term the county superintendent will be
appointed and not elected due to the change in laws the State
legislature passed.
Current superintendent Will Russell’s elected term will expire Dec. 31, 2019.
The criteria to be a candidate for superintendent is: must have been a
principal in an A or B school for three years; or a principal in a
school that has moved the accountability up one grade level and
maintained that level for three years; or must have  served as a
superintendent or assistant superintendent in the last five years.
There is also an alternative process for becoming superintendent.
“This is the most complex law I have dealt with since I have become
executive director,” said Dr. Waldrop.
Under the alternative route, candidates must have held a central
office position for six years and reported directly to the
superintendent; or be the rank of Captain or above in the military; or
if a candidate has run a successful business for six years, they can
qualify to be a superintendent of schools.
The authority is up to the school board.
“If you make the determination that someone meets the criteria for the
alternative route, you are going to have to be able to defend your
decision because you could be challenged on it,” said Dr. Waldrop.
The first step in getting the search kicked off was to assign a board
designee that will work with the MSBA on behalf of the board.
“If you want information from us as your search group, you tell your
designee and they contact us,” said Dr. Waldrop.
Shonda Ard Kelly made a motion to use the board attorney, Nathanial
Armistad, for the liaison between the school board and the MSBA. The
motion passed unanimously.
Dr. Waldrop asked next for an internal person to work with the MSBA
with demographic and community information in order to produce a
brochure to assist in the search.
Terri Stamps made a motion that John Daley be approved for the
position. The motion passed unanimously.
The contract signed by the board also includes the MSBA coming to JDC
for one day and holding stakeholder meetings with teachers,
administrators and the community.
Surveys are distributed and discussions are held regarding what
criteria the participants would like the board to look for in the next
Details regarding the stakeholder meetings can be found in the article below.

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