Midway Independent School District’s school board is preparing to wade into a weekend full of interviews with candidates seeking to replace Superintendent George Kazanas, who has served in the role for a decade.
The trustees were set to view the names of five superintendent candidates for the first time in a closed-door meeting Tuesday evening, setting the stage for a series of interviews Friday through Sunday.
District spokesperson Traci Marlin said the five candidates were narrowed from a pool of about 40 applicants.
The names of the five applicants will not be publicly released, Marlin said, but after the interviews, the board will choose and announce the name of a lone finalist as early as Dec. 8 or at the regular school board meeting Dec. 13.
In accordance with the Texas Public Information Act, the board must wait 21 days after the public announcement of the finalist before signing a contract to make it official.
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Marlin said the board would review the candidates and their resumes during Tuesday’s meeting with the consultant group N2 Learning, which the district hired to conduct the superintendent search.
N2 Learning’s team of consultants is made up of former College Station ISD Superintendent Eddie Coulson, along with Brad Lancaster, who served as Midway ISD superintendent from 2007 to 2011.
Coulson and Lancaster conducted a series of four focus groups and a ThoughtExchange survey in late October to create a candidate profile that would shape their search, Marlin said. The assessments looked at not only personal skills but also the kinds of issues a new leader needs to be able to address, she said.
The results of the ThoughtExchange survey, available at www.midwayisd.org, show top responses from 377 participants. Many participants agreed that the ideal candidate should focus on student success and teacher support, should be genuine rather than political and should have experience at all levels of education.
“The topics that were brought up are informing the board of what they need to be looking for in interviews,” Marlin said.
Kazanas will stay with the district through January, performing regular duties as needed and ensuring a smooth transition, Marlin said. Though he likely won’t work at full capacity, she said Kazanas could run board meetings, sign contracts and conduct other business until the end of the month or until his successor is ready to step in.
Although a new superintendent could be hired by early January, Marlin said the start date is variable depending on who is chosen, accounting for time the candidate might need to make arrangements. If the chosen candidate isn’t able to start by the end of January, Marlin said the district would name an interim superintendent.
“As long as the new person can start in January, we won’t need an interim,” she said.