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School board hires consultant for superintendent search

NOVEMBER 21 - The Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Board of Education voted unanimously last night to hire the N.C. School Boards Association (NCSBA) of Raleigh to assist with the search for a superintendent of schools to replace Don Martin in June 2013.
NCSBA has provided search services to 67 of the current 115 North Carolina school boards, including 106 superintendent searches over the past 10 years. The organization has conducted 24 searches for North Carolina counties in the last 24 months. NCSBA is a non-profit organization that provides a variety of services to school boards, including legal, legislative, administrative, policy development, and risk management, as well as nationwide superintendent search services.
Representatives of the board have been in discussions with NCSBA since September, when Martin announced he would retire. Recently civic and business leaders have expressed interest in the search process and have offered to pay for the services of a search firm. Donny Lambeth, the chairman of the school board, expressed gratitude for the community’s offer.
“We are pleased that the community has agreed to help us with the search by providing the funding necessary to hire a search organization. For several months we have talked to the N.C. School Boards Association about the scope of their services. This organization has broad experience and an excellent record of performance in the recruitment field,” he said.
NCSBA works only for North Carolina school districts but recruits nationwide and is able to match needs of the various counties with the skill sets and experience of the applicants.
“NCSBA will make our job so much easier because they have abundant contacts among school superintendents in North Carolina and nationwide. They will offer the board assistance on the process of screening applicants, provide background information on applicants and help with the logistics of interviewing the semi-finalist and finalist candidates,” said Lambeth.
He said the administration has already received applications, several from highly qualified individuals. “This won’t be an easy task because of the high caliber of applicants but the fact that so many qualified individuals have applied means that this is an attractive position,” he said.
He said the school board will continue to make decisions regarding the process and will select the semi-finalist and finalist candidates, but wants to hear from the community on qualities the next superintendent should have. Community input will be received during four public forums:
  • Thursday, Nov. 29, in the auditorium at Southwest Elementary School (1631 Southwest School Drive, Clemmons, NC, 27012).
  • Tuesday, Dec. 4, in the auditorium of the Education Building (4801 Bethania Station Road, Winston-Salem, NC, 27105).
  • Thursday, Dec. 13, in the auditorium at East Forsyth High School (2500 W. Mountain Street, Kernersville, NC, 27284)
  • Thursday, Dec. 20, in the auditorium at Carver High School (3545 Carver School Road, Winston- Salem, NC, 27105).
Each forum will begin at 6 p.m. and start with a brief explanation of the hiring process. Attendees will have an opportunity to offer their opinions. Spanish-language interpreters will be at each forum. The forums will be filmed and available for viewing on the school system’s website,

For those unable to attend, surveys will be available beginning Nov. 29 to give board members feedback. The surveys will be available on the school system’s website and in paper form, and both English and Spanish copies will be available.
Theo Helm