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Board of Ed Begins Search for Superintendent


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As outgoing Montgomery County Schools Joshua P. Starr was saying goodbye to staff, students, and parents the Board of Education took steps to begin the search for his replacement.

At Tuesday’s Board of Education meeting, the board officially launched the search for a new superintendent for Montgomery County Public Schools with the hiring of an outside executive search firm.

The Board approved a contract with Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates to coordinate efforts to find a new superintendent for MCPS by July 1, 2015. HYA will be paid $35,000 for their services, plus the cost of any reasonable expenses.

In the interim the Board has chosen Larry A. Bowers, currently the district’s chief operating officer, to serve as interim superintendent of schools effective February 16.

“Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates has the knowledge, experience, and expertise to help us conduct this search as quickly and comprehensively as possible,” said Patricia B. O’Neill, president of the Board. “They are familiar with our community and I am confident that they will help us find an excellent leader for the district.”

“Our vision is to inspire learning by providing the greatest public education to each and every student,” O’Neill said. “We look forward to working with our staff, students, and community to find the best superintendent who can help us achieve that vision.”

HYA will assist the Board in developing a job description and will ensure candidates are recruited through many different national networks. In the coming weeks, the Board will launch a superintendent search website to share more information about the search. "The search process will provide many opportunities for students, staff, parents, and community members to participate in the process and identify the characteristics and qualities they would like to see in our next superintendent," wrote O'Neill in a message to the community release Wednesday evening. "These opportunities will include community forums, focus groups, and online surveys. We will be launching a superintendent search website in the coming weeks and will be sharing much more information with you about the process there and on social media."

"In the meantime, we will continue to pursue the important work that is already under way, including efforts to improve student performance and close the achievement gap; addressing the needs of the whole child; diversifying our workforce; and ensuring adequate funding so we can best serve our children and families and add much-needed space for our growing enrollment," wrote O'Neill.

HYA assisted with the last two superintendent searches for MCPS in 1999 and 2011. HYA also has assisted in searches for 14 of the nation’s 25 largest school districts and several area school systems, including Baltimore, Fairfax, and Loudon counties, as well as the Maryland State Board of Education.

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