DALLAS — The Dallas School Board adopted criteria for its search for an interim superintendent Monday, beginning the process to replace former superintendent Michelle Johnstone who resigned on June 29.
Board members voted to declare the position vacant and reviewed policies on qualifications, recruitment and job duties of the superintendent at a meeting on Thursday. The board met again on Monday to take comment on the process and approve a time line to hire an interim superintendent.
The basic qualifications include: Having an Oregon administrative license; master’s or doctorate degree in education; successful teaching experience; and experience as a superintendent or at the district-level administration.
With the criteria and hiring standards adopted in an open meeting, the board can use closed sessions to interview candidates. Interviews could begin this week.
The district’s attorney, Paul Dakopolos, will start work on an interim contract, which will include a salary range of $10,000 to $12,000 per month.
Between the meetings on Thursday and Monday, four people commented on the process, all thanking the board for putting in the time to conduct a search for an interim this summer.
Charlotte Riester, the president of the teachers’ union Dallas Education Association, said union members are ready to work with the person appointed interim.
DEA and classified employees union, Oregon School Employees Association, both submitted votes of “no confidence” in Johnstone to the board in May.
Those letters led to the board authorizing an investigation into accusations the unions leveled against Johnstone. Blanchard said that with Johnstone resigning, the investigation was discontinued.
Kim Kellison, an assistant principal at Dallas High School, read a list of qualifications the district’s administrative employees would like to see in the next leader.
She also emphasized that the interim superintendent should commit to collaboration with staff.
She said administrators would like to have someone who has worked at district-level administration, and has a working knowledge of Dallas School District operations and programs.
“Invested in our community, dedicated to connecting with kids and staff,” Kellison read from the list. “Nurtures and grows leadership capabilities in others.”
Dallas resident and district Citizens Oversight Committee member Gary Suderman urged the board to consider more than professional qualifications.
“Social awareness and people skills, there’s issues you can work through if you possess that,” Suderman said.
He encouraged the board to look internally for a candidate that understands the community and school district.
Engle said the job would be posted by Tuesday.
The deadline to apply is Aug. 15.
Blanchard said the goal would be to select an interim superintendent by Aug. 23.