published Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

School board votes to allow speedy selection for new superintendent


by Adam Crisp

The Hamilton County school board has voted 5 to 3 to change its policy on hiring a new superintendent in a key step toward permanently hiring acting Superintendent Rick Smith.

In late May, the board voted to buy out the contract of Superintendent Jim Scales. A $300,000 package that included pay, benefits and attorney’s fees was offered to Scales, who in turn left the job a year earlier than his contract stipulated.

Tonight, board members Rhonda Thurman, Everett Fairchild, David Testerman, Mike Evatt and Joe Galloway voted to change the policy. George Ricks, Jeffrey Wilson and Linda Mosley voted no. Chip Baker was not present.

Board policy requires for a set timeline and public input before hiring a superintendent. It also says an interim candidate should not be considered for the permanent job unless the board specifically allows that person to do so. Policy also calls for the superintendent to hold a doctoral degree, but it’s not a requirement.

The policy passed tonight allows the board to simply named a superintendent so long as it gives the public 15 days notice and erases a preference for unanimous consent by the board before selecting a superintendent.

Board members who didn’t vote for the policy change wanted a national, or just a statewide search, for a new superintendent. Backers say Smith is a suitable local candidate who after more than 25 years with the school system, deserves a shot at the top job.

about Adam Crisp...

Adam Crisp covers education issues for the Times Free Press. He joined the paper's staff in 2007 and initially covered crime, public safety, courts and general assignment topics. Prior to Chattanooga, Crisp was a crime reporter at the Savannah Morning News and has been a reporter and editor at community newspapers in southeast Georgia. In college, he led his student paper to a first-place general excellence award from the Georgia College Press Association. He earned ...

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Selah said...

WE NEVER HAVE ANY MONEY IN THE SCHOOLS UNTIL THE GOOD OLE BOYS WANT TO BULLY SOMEONE OR TAKE OVER OUR SCHOOL SYSTEM...SICKENING...LORD GOD, MAKER OF HEAVEN AND EARTH HELP US, HELP OUR CHILDREN...THE POOR, NEEDY, AND HELPLESS. AMEN

June 15, 2011 at 9:42 p.m.
chet123 said...

RHONDA THURMAN LEADING THE CHARGE.....LOWER THE BAR SO HER BOYFRIEND CAN QUALIFY....HE DONT STACK UP WITH REGISTER,REYNOLDS AND SCALES.....HE MAY MAKE A GOOD MIDDLE-SCHOOL PRINCIPAL...THANKS RHONDA FOR DUMMYING DOWN HAMILTON COUNTY SUPERINTENDENT JOB....PERHAPS THE NEXT SUPERINTENDENT WILL BE A BARBER FROM SODDY

June 16, 2011 at 10:49 a.m.
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