Valpo board sets criteria for choosing new superintendent

2014-04-03T20:59:00Z 2014-04-03T21:42:36Z Valpo board sets criteria for choosing new superintendentBy Phil Wieland, (219) 548-4352

VALPARAISO | The selection of the next Valparaiso Community Schools superintendent now has a list of criteria the School Board will use in evaluating candidates.

Board President Mark Maassel updated the public on the process at the board's discussion meeting Thursday saying, for the most part, the community resource committee appointed to do the preliminary review of the more than 20 applications developed the criteria the board also will use but with one exception.

The board is looking for someone to replace Michael Berta, who announced earlier this year he will step down Aug. 6 from his interim position as superintendent. The board held a meeting to get the public's input on what qualities and skills the superintendent should have and what issues that person will need to address.

Additional comments were taken at the schools' website, and the committee came up with its own ideas, Maassel said. In the end, the criteria the committee came up with included the following:

The ability to collaborate and build relationships; good communication skills, experience in contract negotiations, a background in curriculum development and what children should be expected to learn, experience in passing referenda and dealing with building projects, financial acumen, leadership ability to move the district forward and technological skills.

To those, Maassel said, the board added the new person should have the ability to follow through on the school accreditation process the district has been working on for a couple of years and complete that.

"We realize no single individual will be strong in every one of those categories, and we might have to look at an individual who is strong in some and not in others," he said. "We will try to identify the candidate with the greatest skill sets."

"Each of us has an opinion on which we think is the most important of those categories," said board member Paul Knauff.

The board has said it wants to select someone within the next couple of months so the district will have time to choose a for Jim Doane, assistant to the superintendent, who also is leaving Aug. 6.

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