District 159 Board Moves Forward with Superintendent Search
The board determined the executive search firm that will assist in the selection process at a meeting Thursday.
The Mokena School District 159 board of education held a special meeting Jan. 3 to discuss the specifics of the search for a new district superintendent.
Current Superintendent Steve Stein announced his resignation on Nov. 20. He will leave the district at the end of June.
The board voted Thursday to approve the bid for B.W.P. and Associates to serve as the executive search firm throughout the superintendent selection process.
“The search firm acts as a facilitator,” said Board Member Katherine Moore.
The board selected B.W.P. because of its previous experience serving schools in the area, including districts in Orland Park, Tinley Park and Oak Lawn.
B.W.P. was one of five firms considered by the board.
Hazard, Young, Attea and Associates offered the lowest bid of all the firms the board considered and was discussed at length as a possible choice. H.Y.A. was projected to cost the district $12,000-$16,500. B.W.P. estimated a price range of $12,900-$20,750, although cost is variable at this point in the process.
B.W.P. will be conducting the search within a shortened timeframe and will include superintendent applications that have already been submitted to the district, per the board’s request. Board President Patrick Markham also stated that he felt that board members interested in interviewing their own candidates during the search should not be prohibited from doing so.
The board will meet with B.W.P. in the coming weeks to begin the candidate search. Board members project that the new superintendent will be determined in early April.
“I have faith that this board can pick a winner,” said Markham.
The board also discussed the extent to which the Mokena community should be involved in the selection of a new superintendent. Interest was expressed by the board in consulting with district teachers and administrators during the superintendent search.
However, the board indicated that outside community involvement should come only at the end of the process, possibly in the form of an online survey. The importance of reporting search progress to the community was also mentioned.
“I like the community involvement,” said Board Member Mark Franceschini. “But at the same time, I’m feeling here that it’s going to cloud the water.”
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