FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne's NBC) -- The public was invited to provide feedback at a meeting Tuesday as the Fort Wayne Community Schools Board of School Trustees begins its search for a new superintendent. Only a handful of people attended.
If you missed the opportunity there are two more meetings coming up:
Wednesday, Dec. 4, 1 p.m., Family and Community Engagement Center, 230 E. Douglas Ave.
Thursday, Dec. 5, 6 p.m., Northrop High School, 7001 Coldwater Road
Those not able to attend one of the meetings can fill out a short survey by Nov. 29 at https://fortwayneschools.org/superintendent-search.
According to FWCS, "the Board is searching for a new superintendent to lead the District’s nearly 30,000 students and 4,000 employees. Dr. Wendy Robinson is retiring as superintendent after 17 years in June 2020. She has worked at FWCS for a total of 47 years"
Previous Reporting: The Fort Wayne Community School board is getting ready to find a successor for retiring superintendent Dr. Wendy Robinson.
The process is expected to take about four months.
“It’s a big deal, it’s a big responsibility,” Julie Hollingsworth says.
As president of the Fort Wayne Community School board, Hollingsworth knows retiring superintendent Dr. Wendy Robinson leaves big shoes to fill.
And she insists the process will be as transparent as possible, whether it’s with internal or external candidates.
“The board understands that parents and the public and staff all have an important role in all of this, and that there will be opportunities for them to be involved and voice their opinions,” she says.
Finding a leader to oversee 30,000 students and more than 4,000 employees, with an annual budget of about $300 million, is expected to take about four months.
Michael Adamson with the Indiana School Boards Association will conduct a national superintendent search training session for the board Wednesday night for someone he says is essentially the CEO of a multimillion dollar company.
“Largest food service provider, largest transportation provider. It takes a lot of skill to effectively run a corporation the size of Fort Wayne,” he says.
The new president of the Fort Wayne Education Association has already requested that a teacher sit on the search committee to help ensure superintendent candidates continue Dr. Robinson’s open channel of communication and are focused on education, not just administration.
“A teacher’s going to bring that ‘what’s in the classroom now’ perspective. Things change all the time, technology changes. So even someone who was a teacher even ten years ago, things are different now than they used to be,” Sandra Vohs says.
Parents like Noah Smith hope to be able to give input about qualities candidates should have, as well.
“I believe Fort Wayne Community Schools has a lot to offer, a lot of great things to offer, and we want that to continue to shine and be an example of not only what the school district has to offer but what the city has to offer,” he says.
Wednesday evening’s board meeting with Adamson from the state School Boards Association is considered to be training, so it’s not open to the public.
However, the public is invited to a search committee planning meeting Thursday morning at 11:30 at the Grille Administration cafeteria.