At a special meeting on April 11, the Osseo School Board chose to pursue hiring an interim superintendent, having been unable to reach a strong level of support for any of the finalists that had been interviewed.
Board members approved a motion to halt any future search activity by the search firm, Ray and Associates, pending further direction, and to authorize the board chair and vice chair to work with the executive director of human resources on behalf of the board to identify candidates for consideration as interim superintendent.
The current search process has been underway since last fall when the board hired a search firm to lead a national search for candidates. Twenty-eight people applied for the Osseo position; six were selected for the first round of interviews but two withdrew prior to the interviews. Three of the four finalists interviewed in the first round were advanced to final interviews, but one of them withdrew from consideration prior to final interviews.
The two finalists interviewed on April 10 were Dr. Erick Pruitt (Houston ISD, Texas) and Mr. James Harris (Daniel Boone Area School District, Pennsylvania). Board members received significant feedback on each finalist’s interview and public presentation, and board members determined that they needed more time to consider the feedback received and reflect on what they had heard in the interviews/presentations.
At the April 11 meeting, neither finalist received sufficient support to receive an employment offer.
Chair Mike Ostaffe recognized the months of work by board members and the significant staff and community feedback on the finalists. “A new superintendent deserves strong support from all board members. It’s important that we now take some time to work with our consultant and staff to come up with a plan to move forward. Hiring an interim superintendent will help ensure that we can do that work within the stable climate that our staff and families deserve.”
Board meetings are open to the public and are webstreamed and live cablecast on Channel 21; meeting recordings are archived on the district website.