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What Kind of School Head Does Greenwich Want?

GREENWICH, Conn. – Finding a new superintendent of schools is the No. 1 priority for the Greenwich Board of Education, Chairman Leslie Moriarty says. As part of the search, a consulting firm will conduct a survey to find out what the community wants in a new head of schools.

“One of the disappointments I think everyone in the community had is we would like to get someone who’s not only a high-performing superintendent, but someone we believe will be able to stay here over an extended time and will be able to make that commitment,” Moriarty says.

The search firm – Hazard, Young, Attea, and Associates – will conduct three open forums Jan. 9 and Jan. 10 to get input on the attributes the community is looking for in a new superintendent. The board hopes to appoint a candidate by July 1, 2012.

The firm will conduct a national search rather than limit the pool to just Greenwich. “I think we owe it to the community to find the right candidate for the job,” says Moriarty. “Internal candidates will have the same ability to apply for the job as external candidates.”

Moriarty says the firm will create a “leadership profile” based on what is important to staff, parents, board members, students, residents, and those in positions of leadership in the community.

An online survey will ask users to identify up to eight “desired characteristics” a candidate should have to meet the needs of the district. The options include day-to-day operations, visibility in community life, who should be included in the decision-making process, and increasing accountability for academic performance. The survey also incorporates two open-ended questions, including the name of any person who would make a good candidate.

“It has been successfully implemented before, and the key criteria identified will be ranked accordingly,” Moriarty says. “That survey will be weighted as much as comments at the forums”

The community forums will be held Monday, Jan. 9, from 7 to 8 p.m. at both the Central Middle School auditorium and the Eastern Middle School auditorium. Another forum will be held Tuesday, Jan. 10, from 7 to 8 p.m. at the Western Middle School auditorium.

The survey is available online . The deadline for completing the survey is Jan. 12.

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