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USC looks for new part-time superintendent

By Staff | Mar 2, 2009

The search is on at United South Central School District for a new superintendent.

At their Feb. 17 meeting, members of the school board weighed the options of whether to hire a full-time or part-time superintendent or share with another district.

The vote was unanimous to make the job a three-day position, says interim Superintendent John Widvey.

“We’re optimistic we’ll find someone. I think we’ll get some good people applying. We’ll just have to wait and see,” he says, adding that applications will be accepted until March 20.

Widvey, who assumed his duties in January, will work through the end of June.

The opening is being advertised on websites of the Minnesota School Boards Association, Minnesota Association of School Administrators and St. Cloud State University.

Board chair Christie Wetzel says a hiring committee comprised of boardmembers, administrators, school staff and members of the community will evaluate the potential candidates.

“Right now we are figuring out what the criteria will be. We hope to start interviews shortly after March 20,” she says. “We absolutely and positively want someone onboard so they can work with John before he leaves.”Cost savings and having to make budget cuts for the next school year may have played a role on the board choosing the part-time option.

“If the board hired a full-time superintendent they would be looking at an additional $60,000,” Widvey says.

Last year, the district went into statutory operating debt. Officials of the state Department of Education have requested a plan be developed to get the district operating in the black.

Work on next year’s budget is under way and boardmembers are looking to make cuts totaling $200,000 to $300,000.

Widvey expects to have the budget completed before the new superintendent begins in July.