TISD readies search for next superintendent

TYLER (TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH) - The search for the next Tyler ISD superintendent is expected to begin soon. The board of trustees is scheduled to discuss the selection process in closed session tonight.

Any decision about the process — whether the board opts to go with or without a search firm — must be made by vote in open session, school district attorney John Hardy said.

Board member Brad Spradlin said he has spent the past few months talking with search firm representatives, other school district board members and representatives from the Texas Association of School Boards to find out which firms are active, what their process is and how their performance rates.

Board President Michelle Carr was unavailable for comment and requested that Spradlin speak on her behalf because of his work with the matter.

Spradlin said he spoke with about six firms and multiple board members. He asked the firms about their process and if they conduct state and/or nationwide searches.

The past two times TISD has needed to hire a superintendent, in 2002 and 2007, the district chose the partnership of Houston attorney J. David Thompson and Dr. Mike Moses, a former Texas education commissioner.
Spradlin said all search firms typically work the same. They seek board and community input and come up with profiles from each group before beginning the search.

Spradlin said he expects the board to discuss posting the job as an open position.

Because previous superintendent Dr. Randy Reid left in August, TISD trustees decided to take their time with the search because most superintendents already were settled in their jobs.

"There are seasons in the school business, and this isn't particularly a season for hiring," Mrs. Carr said in July, when the board announced Gary Mooring as the prospective interim.

Posting the job opening would be the first official step in the process, Spradlin said.

Mooring said by phone on Wednesday that although it originally was not his intention to apply for the permanent superintendent post, that "is something that could be discussed in executive session."

The board is slated to evaluate Mooring's performance during the closed session today.

The board is scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. today in the Dr. Jack L. Davidson Conference Center in the Jim Plyler Instructional Complex, 807 W. Glenwood Blvd. The board will meet in executive session at 6 p.m.


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