NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—The city's Board of Education will begin screening and interviews for candidates to replace retiring Superintendent of Schools Richard Kaplan on November 29.
The New Brunswick school district serves approximately 10,000 students and has only had two superintendents in the past 35 years.
Kaplan is set to retire this summer, leaving the unique district at a crossroads.
The school system announced the next stage of the superintendent search process, screening and interviews, through a statement developed with community input and published on their website.
Notices were sent home with district students to alert parents to the opportunity to help guide the board's decisions about criteria for selecting a new superintendent.
According to the statement, the Board of Education is looking for candidates with both educational experience and a willingness to work within a diverse community.
"The highest priority is raising student achievement but the next Superintendent must be able to enlist and to motivate a dedicated professional and support staff in building confident students and engaging largely limited English speaking families," reads the statement.
Public meetings at Lord Stirling Community School and New Brunswick Middle School assisted in the creation of a leadership profile for the advertised position.
The meetings were conducted by Dr. William Librera, former Commissioner of Education in the administration of ex-Governors James McGreevey and Jon Corzine, who is leading the district's search.
Librera is the Executive Director of West Hudson Associates, a firm specializing in "leadership searches" that was contracted to conduct the search by the Board of Education.
The public's participation in drafting the announcement is reflected in the statement's focus on working with local actors.
"An involved community with great resources remains committed to assisting the next Superintendent in leading this extraordinary urban community that puts its students first," the statement reads.
The statement also says that the new superintendent must be willing to collaborate with local institutions including Rutgers University, Johnson & Johnson, and medical organizations.
According to the West Hudson Associates website, the consulting firm has "conducted numerous successful Superintendent of School searches in New Jersey."
Qualified and "confident" candidates for the position are encouraged to email a letter of interest and resume to West Hudson Associates via [email protected].
Charlie is the founder and editor of New Brunswick Today, and the winner of the Awbrey Award for Community-Oriented Local Journalism. He is a proud Rutgers University journalism graduate and a community organizer, and an independent candidate for Mayor of New Brunswick.