By DAVID GREEN
Morenci Superintendent of Schools Michael Osborne aims to have an interim principal in place for the start of school Sept. 7, then work toward hiring a permanent high school/middle school principal.
With the departure of principal Nate Parker, Dr. Osborne said there isn’t sufficient time to post the opening and go through the interview process before school begins.
He’s already heard from some candidates interested in a short-term interim post, but he said the board of education is leaning toward hiring an interim principal who would serve the entire school year. That person could end up as a permanent principal or the board might want to seek a new pool of candidates for the following school year.
Dr. Osborne dispelled a rumor that the position has already been filled. He said a selection committee of teachers and administrators will interview at least five candidates today (Wednesday) and make a recommendation to the board’s personnel committee for a second interview.
A candidate could be offered the job Thursday.
Dr. Osborne said he is concentrating on finding someone who will take on a leadership role to help bring the middle school and high school staffs together. Several high school teachers will also spend time in the middle school this year as budget challenges continue to spread the staff thinner.
“It’s a transitional time and it’s causing us to take some new directions,” he said. “We need someone to come in and lead us through the change process by bringing us together.”
Dr. Osborne said he was surprised by the number of people interested in the principal position so quickly after Parker left the district.
STAFF—The board met in a special session Aug. 17 to hire a part-time Spanish teacher and to approve a sabbatical leave for high school social studies teacher Jesse Bach. Applications are coming in to hire a long-term substitute to fill Bach’s place.
CLEANING—A private cleaning service was used at the high school last year following the retirement of Howard Tew. A private service will also be used this year at the middle school following Jim Petry’s retirement.
Several cleaning bids have arrived at the board office, Dr. Osborne said. A board committee will look them over and decide specifics such as whether the school will supply materials or if the company will furnish its own.
FUNDING—Dr. Osborne said state funding promises look fairly good currently, but he’s concerned about whether that will hold after the November election with a new governor and some new legislators in office.