In consultation with a search consultant, the SAU Board sponsored public focus groups to solicit input on the skills and qualities needed in a new Superintendent of schools, in addition to the most critical issues needing to be addressed within the first six months of the new Superintendent’s term.
Focus groups were organized around constituencies:
Administrators and SAU staff
Local officials and community members
Parents of students
Professional and support staff members
SAU Board members [UNADVERTISED]
At a budget committee meeting in May, one budcom member asked if the budget committee were invited to the SAU Board focus group. Members of the budcom were told at that time that we were invited but I was subsequently told the budcom could attend only as members of the public and would not be permitted to speak. Another shining example of cooperation among elected officials serving your interests.
It was probably just as well I did not attend the SAU focus group as my contribution would have been a need for “a proven track record of improving academic achievement,” a sentiment pretty well off the radar for the board who is looking for a communicator, a visionary, someone who can sell a budget, and good at parent engagement, and so on. Two members got warm with “leader with accomplishments,” and “committed to what’s best for students,” but you’d be hard pressed to see improving academic results as a priority of this board. The SAU board, by the way is made up of both the Timberlane and Hampstead School board members.
I attended the “Local Officials and Community Members” focus session – me and seven other souls. Where were all the Selectmen from the five towns in the
To date the SAU board has not said if they intend to make public all the comments from these focus groups. Dear tender eared SAU, let us have what we paid for.
Watch the SAU focus session: