Administrators, teachers and parents voiced their opinion on the skills, knowledge and personal qualities they would like to see in the next superintendent for the Tehachapi Unified School District during a public workshop Nov. 14 at Jacobsen Middle School.
“Healthy leadership comes in all shapes and sizes,” said Juan Lopez, representative for Dave Long and Associates. He added, “You have to create a plan and understand what people have done in the past.”
The district hired the search firm to help conduct input sessions for the community and stakeholders, announce the position on various outlets, recruit candidates, collect and process applications, conduct reference checks, interview candidates, and request federal and criminal background checks on the finalist.
Participants at the meeting listed what they would like to see in the next superintendent for the district.
“I would like to see active leadership in reaching out to students,” said Teresa M. Coatlalopeuh, a teacher at Tehachapi High School. She added that a leader needs to support the students, as much as the community, by attending events for fundraisers or competitions.
Parent Sean Clarke said, “I’d rather see someone with education experience. If you don’t know what students are dealing with, it's difficult.”
Traci Minjares, principal at Cummings Valley Elementary School, added, “They need to be a team leader, not a micromanager and who understands how grants work.”
Many other public comments on professional skills and characteristics focused on assertive leadership, balancing a budget, possessing special education skills, a good track record in the position as superintendent, and a person present at school events.
A new TUSD superintendent must have a teaching and administrative service credential. All districts are different in defining the minimum level of education or training and whether the superintendent needs to evaluate certificated employees, said Timothy Beard, director of personnel.
Interim Superintendent Paul Kaminski's contract expires June 30.