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Wednesday, January 05, 2011

School Board Confirms Selection of Firm to Help Find Superintendent

• Board Members Hope for Someone Who Will Stay Longer

BY JULIE WALLACH


Santa Monica-Malibu Unified Sschool District board members confirmed their decision to hire the executive search firm Leadership Associates to help find a new district superintendent, at a special meeting Monday night.
The current superintendent, Tim Cuneo, will retire this coming June after two-and-a-half years with the district.
According to Sarah Wahrenbrock, assistant to Cuneo, there will be a special open board meeting tentatively set for the week of Jan. 17, where the board will “discuss key features of potential candidates.”
Wahrenbrock added that there will be a slightly revised timeline pushing a few of the dates back from the original proposed schedule, and that “the board will ask the firm for input regarding how to elicit questions and concerns from the public regarding the hire.”
The board will meet with the firm within the next two months and receive staff and community input during that time. The board decides the staff and community members that meet with the firm.
The position will be posted and active recruitment will begin sometime near March.
The deadline for applications is currently set for March 18, but might be moved to a later date depending on how the new timeline is set.
Final interviews will take place in April, and as is custom in this type of search, the board is invited to visit to the community of the leading candidate.
The new superintendent’s start date is currently set for July 1, 2011.
Leadership Associates will charge $28,500 for their services, which include “assisting the board in developing a personal and professional profile for the new superintendent that includes input from staff, parents, the business community and local government leaders,” according to their proposal to the board.
Additionally, the firm will “recruit candidates who closely match the locally developed profile, conduct in-depth reference checks, and maintain candidates’ confidentiality.”
During the board meeting on Dec. 13, L.A.’s Peggy Lynch, who will lead the current search for the firm, mentioned that it is difficult to have town hall meetings when current superintendents could risk their privacy by doing so.

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