Whitesburg KY
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31 have applied for job of Letcher schools chief

A Letcher County Board of Education member says he wants to interview all superintendent applicants who reside in Letcher County.

“I think it is a courtesy thing for our local people to get an interview,” said Will Smith, a board member.

Thirty-one persons have applied for the superintendent position, but Mike Oder, superintendent search consultant with the Kentucky School Boards Association (KSBA), said he doesn’t know how many of the applicants live in Letcher County.

Of those who have applied for the position, 25 are men and six are women. Twenty-five of those vying for the job live in Kentucky.

Six of the applicants are superintendents, 15 work in a school’s central office, seven are principals, one works with an education organization and two fall into the category of other.

The names of the applicants have not been released to the public.

During a special board meeting on May 3, the board met with members of a committee that will screen applicants and make recommendations to the full county school board.

Members of the screening committee are Board Chairman Robert Kiser; Regina Brown, certified employee representative; James McAuley, certified employee representative; Cora Sturgill, classified employee representative; Hilary Swisher Meade, parent representative; and David Robinson, who was chosen to represent the district’s school principals.

Kiser was named chairman of the screening committee.

Oder gave the committee thumb drives on Friday that contain five different pieces of information for each applicant. Oder said in the past he has handed over several boxes of applications and other paperwork to screening committees. Now all of the information the committee needs can be found on a small thumb drive.

The committee wi l l screen candidates by reviewing applications, background checks and reference checks.

“If you do your job, you are going to give them the best candidates,” said Oder. “The cream will rise to the top in this search. It always does.”

During a school board meeting at 8 p.m. on May 22, the screening committee will recommend five applicants for the school board to interview. The school board can follow the recommendations of the committee or interview any or all of the applicants.

“There may be other folks we may want to interview that aren’t in that five or aren’t local,” said Terry Cornett, a board member.

The majority of the screening committee meetings will be held in executive sessions. The screening committee is also scheduled to meet at 7:30 p.m. on May 12 and May 19 in the conference room of the Letcher County Board of Education’s central office.

The new superintendent is expected to be named June 13. Current Supt. Anna Craft will retire at the end of June.

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