Board preps committee

FONDA – The search for a new Fonda-Fultonville School District superintendent continued Monday as the school board prepared a special community committee to interview the candidates.

During a special board meeting Monday, the school board discussed with the committee what it expected from the committee’s interviews of the two candidates.

The candidates for the superintendent position have been narrowed down to two in-district principals: high school Principal David Halloran and elementary school Principal Thomas Ciaccio.

School board President Timothy Wendell said the board wants the committee to be frank and honest about the candidates during the interview process.

District Interim Superintendent Raymond Colucciello said the role of this committee is critical to the process of selecting the next superintendent.

The committee is made up of eight members of the district’s bargaining unit, seven community members and two students. More members may still be added to the committee.

The committee members will each fill out a ratings sheet for the two candidates after their interviews, he said. The school board will then look over those sheets and make its decision.

Colucciello said the school board is not looking for a combined agreement from the committee about the person they want. Instead, the board wants input from each person as to who they think will be the best fit for the position.

“This board is very interested in finding the right fit,” Colucciello said. “You try to pick the leader that can lead this district.”

Colucciello told committee members they were free to come up with their own questions. He said the committee can ask questions about a variety of topics, including how long the candidates plan to stay in the district.

“We want [the committee] to get deep into the candidates’ heads,” Colucciello said. “You have to decide: Does this person have the right vision? Do they have the knowledge, background and experience?”

Wendell said whoever gets the position will carry the title of associate superintendent/principal and remain in their current position, while being mentored by Colucciello. The new superintendent will receive a yearly salary between $120,000 and $140,000.

The school board will extend Colucciello’s contract so he will be on hand to help the new associate superintendent/principal get used to the new position.

Colucciello started as interim superintendent in December 2012, after the departure of previous Superintendent James Hoffman, who left in June 2012.

Wendell said the committee’s portion of the process needs to be done before the summer break.

The committee is scheduled to meet on Monday to formulate questions and go over the candidates credentials, Colucciello said.

Colucciello said he would like the committee members to have their interview sheets into the board by June 15.

Colucciello said there is no date yet for when the board will make its final decision on who the next superintendent will be.