Update: The Magazine School Board met Tuesday night and selected four candidates for interviews. They hope to select a candidate by April 30.
Outgoing Magazine Schools superintendent Brett Bunch is advising anyone looking to succeed him to be aware of two key things with the district.
One deals with money. The other is the so-called hybrid schedule the school district began this school year -- students begin the school year earlier than the rest of the state and ending after the rest of the state, but with more breaks throughout the year.
“I was directed to make sure that the people that come in here know that (the board) made a commitment to this calendar for three years and they intend to stand by that,” said Bunch. “And they are looking for someone who is innovative and wants to continue (the calendar).”
Bunch said he has provided all applicants a list of frequently asked questions, the actual calendar for the next two school years, how tests are conducted to gauge progress, and a copy of the letter the district sends to parents requesting students attend during intercession periods.
“So they’ve got all the information about how it works, that way they’re not coming in blind,” said Bunch.
Bunch said he also advised candidates to be abreast of the salary schedule because there is little negotiating room.
“If you’re coming be advised about what the calendar is all about and be on board with it, and if you’re not, don’t waste their time or yours,” said Bunch.
“It’s been a good deal for us so far this year,” Bunch adds of the calendar change. “We’re seeing about what we expected in our reading scores on an increase (and) a little better than we expected in attendance.”
The application period for the superintendent opening ended at 5 p.m. on Monday of this week.
Bunch, who is leaving the school to take the top job at Newport, said there were 23 applicants as of last week, including several who have superintendent experience.
Bunch is providing board members with a rubric to grade the applicants and the board members will determine exactly what questions will be asked of the candidates when they have an on campus interview.
Those interviews are scheduled for April 23-26.
The interview process will be a lengthy one for the candidates as they meet first with a student focus group at 12:30 p.m., followed by interview with a classified employee focus group, and a certified employee froup.
After a break and dinner with the board, the candidate will be formally interviewed by the board from 7 to about 9 p.m.
Bunch said every candidate will get the same questions from every focus group and the same questions from the board and each of the groups will prepare a master score sheet from the rubric.
“After the board interviews the candidates and they discuss their (rubric) then they will take a look at the master sheets of the groups, because they don’t want that to influence their work,” said Bunch.
None of the questions will not concern the school district’s hybrid calendar.