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15 candidates apply for Superintendent of McCreary County School District

By Eugenia Jones

The McCreary County School District is inching closer to naming a new superintendent of schools to fill the shoes of the retiring current superintendent, Corey Keith.  The new superintendent will assume his/her duties on July 1, 2022.

Having ended a 45 day advertising period for the position on March 15, 2022, the McCreary County Board of Education met in special session last night (March 21, 2022) for the 1st joint meeting between the Board of Education (BOE) and the Superintendent Search Screening Committee.  During the special BOE meeting, Board Chairperson Braxton King read the BOE’s charge to the Screening Committee.  In the charge, Chairperson King noted the Board’s expectations of the committee include the following:  (a.) maintaining the confidentiality of applicants, (b.) the release of all applicants to the Board by May 9, 2022 with committee recommendations noted, (c.) the committee’s recommendation of 5-6 candidates listed in alphabetical order (not ranked), and (d.) meeting with the Board on May 9 for the purpose of formally recommending and discussing the candidates.  Criteria for a successful candidate includes such qualities as: possessing strong proven leadership with a record of improving student achievement, administrative experience, an ability to effectively communicate during the current pandemic, a record of strong morals and involvement within the community, and knowledge of budgeting, school finances, buildings and grounds, and the Kentucky Education system.

Kentucky School Board Association facilitator Tim Eaton noted the screening committee and members of the Board of Education have a “tall order to fill.”

“If you find all that,” Eaton observed after discussing the criteria.  “You will be blessed.”

Although specific names of applicants cannot be released, the following statistical information is available to the public.   

Upon closure of the advertising period, the McCreary County Superintendent search had garnered fifteen completed applications.  Of the candidates who submitted completed applications, all candidates are male.  Two of the applicants are currently superintendents, seven are Central Office employees, four are principals, and two are teachers.  Eleven applicants reside in the state of Kentucky.  Four applicants reside out of state.

Immediately following the Board of Education meeting, the Superintendent Search Screening Committee met in closed session without the Board to receive applications, determine reference check questions, determine applicant questions, and clarify/understand the procedure for the initial screening of applicants.  The screening committee will meet again in April to finalize and begin background and reference checks on those applicants selected for screening by the Search Committee.  (The board is not required to hire from the recommendations of the screening committee; however, it is assumed the screening committee is responsible and diligent, thus the committee’s recommendations typically receive serious consideration.)  

The McCreary County Superintendent Screening Committee 2022 is composed of the following members:  Lori Foster (School Board member of committee), Rebecca Blakley (principal member), Elizabeth Ball (parent member) Karen Kidd and Michelle Trammell (certified staff members) and Holly Daugherty (classified member.)  State law mandates the number and types of members seated on a superintendent search screening committee.

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