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Superintendent Search Process

On behalf of the Sycamore Board of Education, we want to thank our families, staff, and community members for their continued engagement during our superintendent search process. We have received numerous comments regarding the important characteristics of the next superintendent and the values our community holds dear. Your feedback and candor are greatly appreciated and were considered as we selected the next individual to lead our district.

Our extensive search and interview process began in December. The Board hired superintendent search firm K-12 Business Consulting in January (K-12) to extend our search efforts to nationwide recruitment of the highly-qualified candidates from diverse cultural, gender, geographic backgrounds. 

The search began with engaging our community. K-12 held focus groups with 193 internal and external stakeholders to collect data regarding the strengths of the district, the challenges facing the district, and the characteristics of the next superintendent. The Board also received 444 responses from families, staff, and community members to a survey conducted by K-12.

One theme that was apparent through these sessions and survey responses was the strength in the diversity of our diverse school population and inclusive practices. Diversity and inclusion were also identified through our strategic planning process as being one of the values our district embraces to promote an equitable, justice, and supportive learning environment. These strengths and values were an important piece of our decision-making process. 

After developing a superintendent profile that was based on input received from these sessions and survey responses, the Board reviewed the credentials of 53 highly-qualified and diverse applicants, many of whom were recruited from high-performing districts from across the country. Seven potential candidates were selected to be interviewed by the Board during the first round. 

Four candidates then advanced to the finalist round, where they were again interviewed by Board members. These four candidates were also interviewed by a representative group of staff, families, and community members during a Meet the Candidate event on March 30. Participants completed an evaluation sheet on each candidate which was then carefully reviewed and considered before a final decision was made. The process also included extensive reference checks to determine the best match for our district based on experience, skillset, and overall suitability for the position.

We appreciate those of you who actively participated in this process, whether through focus groups, survey responses, our Meet the Candidate night, or by providing your feedback to us on the candidates that were being considered. This important decision was not taken lightly or made in a vacuum. Each of you provided valuable insight and input that guided this important process. 

We had a robust pool of very qualified candidates and we selected the best individual who will not only take our district to the next level of growth and achievement but encompasses those values and characteristics that we know are important to our community. We look forward to working collaboratively with the new superintendent toward a shared vision and mission. Please look for additional information later this evening regarding our selection.

Melissa Weiss

Sycamore Board of Education President