My Goal in Blogging

I started this blog in May of 2008, shortly after my election to the School Committee, because I believed it was very important to both provide the community with an opportunity to share their thoughts with me about our schools and to provide me with an opportunity for me to ask questions and share my thoughts and reasoning. I have found the conversation generated on my blog to be extremely helpful to me in learning community views on many issues. I appreciate the many people who have taken the time to share their views. I believe it is critical to the quality of our public schools to have a public discussion of our community priorities, concerns and aspirations.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Superintendent Search Stuff

I'm out of town now at a conference, but wanted to post the latest Amherst Bulletin article on the search for the new superintendent (  As I note in this article, the comments I've received (some to my personal email, others to the entire SC) have really been all over the map, with strong advocates for each of the three finalists.  To me, that is actually very encouraging, because it means that each of the three finalists is seen as having real strengths by at least some members of our community.  I am hopeful that the SC can have a thoughtful discussion about the strengths and fit of each of the three finalists when we meet on Sunday, February 6th, and that we will emerge with a finalist that all members of the SC feel comfortable supporting.  This is the most important decision the SC makes, and I believe all 10 of us are really focused on gathering information (from many sources) and making the best decision we can for the districts. 


Anonymous said...

"We're not hiring a superintendent based on a two-hour interview," she said. "The skills necessary to do a coffee or an interview are not necessarily the same skills we're looking for.


The superintendent, whomever he/she/it winds up being, won't be able to survive on social graces alone. I would rather have a competent superintendent who could run a district well (and economically) than someone with all the social graces who is incompetent.

Yes, it is nice to have a presentable administrator but the ability to administer is far more important....

Anonymous said...

Catherine - as the appearance (as well as reality) of absolute fairness needs to be maintained, I think it is important to note that a lot of concerned persons (myself included) won't be able to be physically present at the Maria G interview tomorrow.

Concurrent with this - at 7:15 - is the public hearing on the plan to blockade Lincoln Avenue which in my case would mean that I would have to travel an extra four MILES (round trip) to get to certain places!

Assuming that everything isn't canceled due to foul weather (the Amherst sky has the characteristic blue "weatherbreeder" look - and they are talking "ice storm" this time) -- assuming that everything isn't shut down due to weather, a lot of us will be watching her interview later on the web because of the "Berlin Wall" meeting where we need to speak. (And as I am a native "American" speaker and most of my neighbors not, I really need to go...)

I intend to comment when I have seen all three candidates -- I want to make it clear exactly why I won't be there in person, (why others likely won't as well) but that I still will be objectively listening to what she says (or in my case, had said).

Fairness matters, and everyone needs to know that there are people not in attendance tomorrow who likely otherwise would be were it not for the meeting in the Town Room.

Anonymous said...

Larry Kelly is saying that Maria G's interview has been rescheduled due to anticipated weather. Can you confirm? Do you know reschedule date?

Catherine A. Sanderson said...

Anonymous 12:02 - Maria Geryk will interview on Thursday, February 3rd (due to weather stuff).

Anonymous said...

Wow. I read Your choosing of the Super Intendent and there were many incorect facts. You said non-amherst members when I belive you ment amherst members. You also said that the sc would review her in January of 2010 which was more than a year ago.