Mascenic begins the search for new superintendent

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Published: 12/19/2018 4:42:28 PM

The Mascenic Regional School District will start the process of selecting a new district superintendent at the start of the new year.

Stephen Russell has been serving the district as an interim superintendent since June of 2017, when the district’s previous superintendent, Ruthann Goguen, resigned late in the school year. 

Russell was hired as the superintendent officially for the following school year, but School Board Chair Steve Spratt said the district knew that it would be for the short term.

“We had an understanding that he would stay on an additional year, but he hadn’t looked for or asked for a longer contract. There was never an expectation that he would do a third year,” Spratt said.

Spratt said the school board was happy to have Russell on to continue work on curriculum development and team building which began under his tenure.

“While I personally wish Dr. Russell would have extended his time with our district, I do understand his wish to retire and to be closer to his family,” School Board Vice-Chair Rachel Anderson wrote in an email to the Ledger-Transcript on Friday. “I wish him the best and thank him for being instrumental in directing our district in a positive direction.”

The school board has laid out a plan to select a replacement by early April, who will officially take over the position on July 1, according to Anderson.

The district will be accepting applications through Jan. 4, at which point the potential candidates will be reviewed and pared down to a pool of semi-finalists. The semi-finalists will be selected by Feb. 4, and throughout February, will undergo the first round of interviews.

Finalists will be selected by March 4. Finalists will be invited to tour the district and meet students and parents. At this time, the community will be invited to give their feedback on the final candidates.

“The aim is to find someone who will provide continuity for students and staff in terms of vision and goals that the school board has established and the entire district's staff have worked diligently on these past two years under Dr. Russell's leadership as interim superintendent,” Anderson wrote.

Spratt said the school board will be looking for a superintendent to continue Russell’s example of engagement with staff and visiting the school settings. 

“Leadership and engagement is so important. That’s been a positive relationship,” Spratt said. “We don’t have an ivory tower syndrome here.”

The district has recently begun to work with a curriculum coordinator, and curriculum development will be a continuing job for whomever takes Russell’s place, as will the continuing issue of reduction of state aid, Spratt said.

Spratt said the school board was also interested in a candidate who had experience in teaching and curriculum. 

While residents and parents will have an opportunity to meet the final candidates, the school board is also currently seeking input into what qualities the district would like to see in the candidates through a survey available on the district’s website.


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