Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Minneapolis School Board weighs new superintendent decision

This MPR radio clip exemplifies the importance of PNLC Blogger Mallory Mitchell’s previous post about the tell-all job interview question: “Can you tell me about your Board?”

The Minneapolis School Board is currently seeking a new District Superintendent, and the search has been fraught with challenges. In his letter to withdraw his candidacy, the interim Superintendent Goar stated plainly that the School Board was increasingly “divided and fragmented”. The former Minnesota Mayor R.T. Rybak echoed these exact sentiments this week. A Superintendent is the head of the Board and also carries out its policies; a functional working relationship requires mutual trust.
It is possible that Superintendent candidates are asking the exact question that Mitchell suggested, “Can you tell me about your Board?” and are seeking other job opportunities, instead.

On an organizational level, a volunteer Board will certainly face challenges carrying out the HR functions of a new hire process. As a Minneapolis resident myself who takes pride in our city, I am grateful for the service of the Minneapolis Public School Board. I also believe we must take the challenge of a divided School Board seriously, and as a community be active participants in the search and input for a new Superintendent.

By: Lauren Walker

Lauren Walker is a first year MPP candidate at the Humphrey School studying Global Policy. Her previous work experience was as a Regional Organizer for International Justice Mission. In her career, she aims to increase communication between practitioners and policymakers, to garner wider support for programs that work.

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