ZACHARY — The Zachary Community School District’s Executive Committee decided Thursday the School Board should appoint three committees to work out the details of searching for a new superintendent.
Superintendent Warren Drake, the only paid superintendent the state’s top-ranked school district has had since it hired him in August 2002, announced last week he plans to leave Sept. 4 to take a new job as a state Department of Education network leader.
The committee members and several other board members attending the meeting said the first week of December is a “target date” for having a new superintendent, which board President Jannie Rogers said would likely require a decision by Nov. 1.
The board decided tentatively Tuesday to name Finance Director Gordon Robertson as an interim superintendent to head the district between the time Drake leaves and his successor takes the reins.
The members Thursday decided the search should involve committees to discuss the qualifications the next superintendent should have, a compensation package and an overall committee to decide on details of advertising the opening, accepting applications and screening the applicants.
Board member David Dayton agreed to head the panel recommending a set of minimum qualifications.
The group discussed setting the qualifications above the minimum standards set by the state, but decided to leave that to Dayton’s committee.
Board member Hubie Owen, reached by telephone from the meeting room, agreed to head the compensation panel.
Gaynell Young, the only board member serving when Drake was hired, will head the larger committee that sets up the application and interview process.
Young said she wants former board Beth Kimmell to serve with her. Kimmell was a member of board that hired Drake.
The Executive Committee said members of the community should be invited to serve with board members on the committees dealing with the hiring process.
The full board is scheduled to act on the committee recommendations, the panels’ membership and Robertson’s appointment at its July 12 meeting.
Drake will be one of five network leaders reporting directly to state Education Superintendent John White and charged with overseeing the efforts of officials in 10 or so school districts each in setting up new mandated teacher reviews and tougher courses.
White said Drake and others would be measured by student achievement and surveys of district officials on how well they are supported by the state Department of Education.
Zachary has been the top-performing school district in Louisiana for seven consecutive years and is the only A-rated school in the state.