Medford School Board begins process for new superintendent

MEDFORD, Ore.– The Medford School District is preparing to find a new superintendent in place of Dr. Brian Shumate, the current superintendent, pending if he finalizes his decision to leave by the end of the summer.

In a report released by The LaGrange Daily News last week, Shumate is one of three finalists vying for superintendent of the Troup County School District in Georgia.

Shumate, who has ties back east said in a statement released by the Medford School District, “In the last several years, our family has experienced deaths, serious illness and the birth of a grandchild. Because of these family considerations I’ve found it necessary to be closer to my hometown and closer to family.”

Now, the school’s board of directors are moving forward with plans for a replacement if need be. But according to the board, Shumate has every intention of leaving by this summer.

On Wednesday, at a special meeting, the board met to look at three companies that provide services to help find a new superintendent. The company they hire would then bring in a consultant from the region to gather a list of possible candidates from across the country.

The board made a point that those candidates who were local would be given serious consideration as they wouldn’t have to relocate as far. But the district is still intent on finding the right person for the job, wherever they may come from.

“It’s critical,” said Cynthia Wright, chair of the board, speaking about the superintendent companies. “They’re going to be doing a background check, they’re going to be searching all over based on their experience and that’s going to be critical to us finding the right person.”

The board plans to make a final decision on the company they want to hire near the end of the month. They hope to have a superintendent chosen before the 2019 – 2020 school year.

Ultimately though, the board is looking to find a superintendent that engages with students and faculty and keeps improving upon the district’s goals.

“Be the right fit for our community,” said Wright. “Not every person is going fit well in Medford and our community and we want to find somebody that is the right fit so that we can make the progress.”

Shumate, who did not attend the meeting, is holding his final interview with the Troup County School Board this week. That school board plans to name it’s new superintendent next Thursday.

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