January 31, 2013

By Staff

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Public input critical in superintendent searches

Selecting a new superintendent is easily one of the most important decisions a school board can make. The superintendent sets the tone and direction for staff members and students across the district.

In a strange turn of events, both school districts that serve Newcastle students are in search of new district leaders, after Issaquah School District Superintendent Steve Rasmussen announced plans to retire at the end of the school year.

The Renton School District is already deep into its own search for a new superintendent after Mary Alice Heuschel left to take a position in Gov. Jay Inslee’s office.

As both school boards embark on the monumental task of choosing your child’s next superintendent, it’s imperative that parents and community members alike get involved in the process.

So far, the Renton School District has done the right thing in working to involve the public in its search by holding community meetings, allowing families to help develop the position description and leadership profile of the new superintendent.

Rasmussen will remain with the Issaquah School District through June, so the process to name his replacement has not begun in earnest yet as Renton’s has, since Heuschel left in mid-January.

Nevertheless, once the Issaquah School Board begins the search, there will undoubtedly be various opportunities for the community to make its voice heard.

A well-chosen superintendent is a critical component in maintaining a successful school district that properly guides children through their scholastic careers.

Parents must be vocal as both school boards conduct the search for new superintendents, ensuring that the person chosen for the position is someone that has the vision, heart and determination to lead the districts and their students into the future successfully.

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