The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Front.cheers
    MACEE BEERS joins other Fayette Elementary School students for the annual Mini-Cheer performance during the half-time break at the basketball game.
  • Family.3.wide
    CHILDREN at Stair District Library’s Family Story Time toss scarves into the air during an activity. The evening program provided a mix of stories, songs, dancing, crafts and snacks Monday evening. The program is offered at 5:30 p.m. every Monday for five more weeks. The program is designed for three to five year olds and their family.
  • Front.newpaper.2
    THE INTERVIEW—Evelyn Joughin (right) records the interaction with an iPad while Jack Varga, next to her, asks questions of Morenci Elementary School principal Gail Frey. Morenci senior Sam Cool (standing) listens. Cool serves as the editor for the newspaper written by members of Mrs. Barrett’s second grade class.
  • Front.code.2
    WRITING CODE—Brock Christle (left), a Morenci fifth grade student, takes a look at the progress being made by fourth grader Anthony Lewis. Libby Rorick, a sixth grade student, is next in a line of girls trying out the coding tutorials. This year marked Morenci’s second year of participation in the Hour of Code project.
  • Front.skelton.vigil
    MORENCI’S three Skelton brothers were remembered with both tears and laughter last week during a candlelight vigil at Wakefield Park. Several people came out of the crowd to give their recollection of the boys who have now been missing for five years.
  • Front.gym.new
    REMIE RYAN (left) tries to dodge the foam wand held by Hayden Bays during physical education class at Morenci Elementary School. In the background, Lauryn Dominique and Brooklyn Williams stay clear of the tag. Second grade students were working on cardiovascular health on the first day back from vacation. For the record, Safety Tag is a very difficult sport to photograph.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.

Morenci school to seek interim superintendent 2013.06.05

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

It’s still too early for the Morenci Board of Education to come up with a definite plan of action to replace the three administrators who will soon leave the district, but board member seem to agree on one point: an interim superintendent is needed for the immediate future while long-range plans are considered.

Superintendent Dr. Michael Osborne, who is currently shared between Morenci and Hudson, will serve Hudson alone starting in July.

At the regular meeting Monday, board members accepted the impending resignations of secondary principal Kelli Campbell and elementary principal Mary Fisher. Both administrators have found jobs with other districts. Fisher will continue work with the district through the end of July while Campbell will leave at the end of June.

Some board members met with Osborne to discuss possible administrators and Osborne is in the process of calling them to gauge their interest in the job.

Board member Laura Spencer, speaking in a committee meeting, said the ultimate goal discussed at the meetings is to find someone with strong leadership skills. Rather than rush into the hiring process, a known person could be hired to build stability in the short term while long-term goals are established.

“Several names have been suggested, but there’s not been enough time to put together a formal recommendation,” she said.

What’s needed from the board is some direction, Osborne said. Goals need to be formed to lead administrators toward what is trying to be achieved. Talking with candidates for the position might help in writing goals.

“I know there’s interest in the interim role,” said board president Scott Merillat. “It could be for six months, it could be for a year. That person might help with the selection of a long-term administrator.”

 Merillat said he wants an experienced person in the interim role to make sure the district complies with state law. Someone from outside the Morenci district has seen the operations of other districts and may bring new ideas.

A list of interim superintendents was obtained from the Michigan Association of School Boards. Osborne said he’s had calls from some individuals not on the list who are interested in serving the district.

Board member Larry Bruce said the board can’t expect to have a superintendent in the district five days a week. He was told by other interim superintendents that two or three days a week should be sufficient for a district of this size.

Merillat pointed out that one of the complaints made about Osborne is that he was not in Morenci often enough. A “culture change” is needed to accept that, Spencer said.

Spencer believes there is a good pool of candidates both for the superintendent role and the other administrative roles that will have more contact with teachers and students.

“The prime factor is to have someone with an interest in the district,” Merillat said.

If goals are made clear, said trustee Phil McCaskey, an experienced interim superintendent will know the routine and should be able to do the job.

The Lenawee ISD is willing to help the board with creating questions for the interviewing process.

Someone should be named as an interim superintendent by July 1, Osborne said, even if that person isn’t the one that will be hired for the post.

Merillat spoke at the regular meeting about the board’s desire to hire an interim superintendent and continue looking at what could be done in the next year with the other positions.

“In the long term, we have some ideas of where we want to go, but nothing set in stone,” he said.

Many ideas have been collected from staff and community members and some are different from what has been done in the past.

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