66 Apply For Superintendent Post

Melissa Bailey PhotoGarth Harries has 65 contenders in his quest to lead New Haven’s public schools.

Harries (pictured), the system’s assistant superintendent, was one of 66 people who sent in applications by a June 25 deadline to be considered for New Haven’s open school superintendent job. Reggie Mayo, who’s been superintendent for 21 years, plans to retire as soon as the school board finds a replacement. The job was posted on May 31.

PROACT Search, the private firm New Haven’s school board hired to conduct a search for the superintendent’s job, collected the applications. The firm plans to work with the school board to narrow the field down to eight to 12 candidates by July 8. Then board members plan to interview those candidates by Skype or in person to narrow the field to three.

The school board plans to hold a special public hearing for on Saturday, July 20, where the public will get to ask questions of three finalists, according to board President Carlos Torre. The time and place are yet to be determined.

The school board plans to appoint the next superintendent on July 22. The person would start right away if they are able to; if not, they’d start as soon as possible, Torre said.

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posted by: Curious on June 28, 2013  11:12am

People, please read just ONE example of how this was done in Massachusetts…

With consultation from the Executive Search firm, an Advisory Search Committee (ASC) of approximately 12 members will be appointed from a broad cross-section of the community. The ASC will review resumes, participate in interviews and evaluate candidates in order to select two to five finalist candidates.

Finalists will be interviewed for an entire day by a broad cross-section of the community in small interview groups and community forums. Incorporating the feedback received, the School Committee will make the final decision on a Superintendent in an open meeting.

At any point in the process, if it is determined that Wellesley will be unable to attract an outstanding candidate as defined by the search selection criteria, then an interim Superintendent will be hired.

Why are your kids any LESS important than those elsewhere?

Demand the same!!  Why don’t you have input until the final three?  Why don’t you get a FULL DAY to ask questions?

Why jam in a candidate who doesn’t meed the needs of your children just because you can’t find them by July 22?

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on June 28, 2013  1:02pm

I am rolling the dice.Garth will be in.

posted by: Atticus Shrugged on June 28, 2013  1:23pm

The City of New Haven has done a horrible job with hiring.  Whoever replaces the current superintendent needs to be on an interim basis only.  The current mayor and/or school board have no right to saddle a new administration with a superintendent not of their choosing.

I, for probably the second time, agree that meetings via skype and less than a full day’s interview is probably insufficient.  And as Mr. Carolina’s ranking by his co-workers has taught us, the superintendent should also be interviewed by each principal and department head.  There needs to be a well thought out process to every step of this application and hiring.  Right now, that’s not being done.

Let Garth stay on as interim superintendent until a more thorough search can begin next January with the permanent employee to arrive and begin working in June once the school year ends.

posted by: Teacher in New Haven on June 28, 2013  2:49pm


The new superintendent, by law gets a 1 year contract.  So by default the district will follow your plan with the small amendment that if the new mayor wants a replacement, he or she will have to wait until July 22, 2014.

If the new mayor doesnt like the process, they will have 6 months to find someone else and convince the board.

posted by: urban ed on June 28, 2013  4:33pm

Teacher, thanks. People keep forgetting that. I just wish they’d dispense with the sham search, since it’s not fooling anybody, before any more money is wasted, and give Garth the shot he’s earned.

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on June 28, 2013  9:45pm

Make sure this does not happen here.

School’s out for Vallas
Daniel Tepfer

Published 8:02 pm, Friday, June 28, 2013


posted by: Brutus2011 on June 29, 2013  11:53pm

Sorry, 3/5;

It has already happened here.

posted by: ISR on July 1, 2013  10:20am

The Valas case in Bridgeport, where a judge ruled that he did not have the requisite courses to be a certified Superintendent in CT, disqualified a person who had led the Chicago and Philadelphia school systems.

This is akin to disqualifying a PhD in math or physics (Einstein) or Yo Yo Ma from teaching in a public school because of a lack of Mickey Mouse education courses.

I’m a big critic of Teach for America, but because of their low number of years commitment, not because the best qualified in a subject area, with mentoring, make the best teaches.

posted by: Atticus Shrugged on July 1, 2013  5:01pm

Teacher, thank you.  I had wrongly assumed that the Super gets more than a one-year contract as that would seem insufficient to make any headway in leading a school system.  I suppose that it was not an issue with the DeStefano-Mayo administration, which accomplished many good things.  But it certainly seems like it could be for anyone thinking of uprooting to move to CT to run a school district.