Italy school board trustees pursue search for new superintendent

The Italy School Board of Trustees held a special meeting Monday evening to pursue the superintendent search as well as an interim candidate search.

Marian Strauss, a field services representative with Texas Association of School Boards (TASB), addressed trustees concerning the steps that are ahead in the superintendent search.

Strauss has been with TASB for three years and was a superintendent the previous 25 years throughout Texas. She said she loves helping school districts find their next superintendent.

Strauss said she will work hard to understand what type of superintendent the district needs and will make sure the candidates have a small town relationship in their background. She said TASB has been doing this type of search since 1986 and has completed over 600 superintendent searches.

She said TASB will gather information on candidates and do the vetting.

Strauss presented board members with a drafted time line. She said it’s not a strict time line, noting that things can change from time to time. Plans are to name a lone finalist no later than mid-March.

She said plans are to be back in Italy about Nov. 19 to get community, parent and school involvement. She said there will be two from TASB in Italy on that date gathering information about what qualities are important for the next superintendent. She said a link to the school’s website could be added for those residents/parents who will not be available to express their opinion on that date. Once this information is gathered, she plans on presenting the school board with that information on Dec. 2.

Trustees, from that point, will decide what areas are important to address.

She plans to be back about Jan 13 for a meeting to narrow the search to six or eight candidates. A date will be scheduled to interview these candidates. From that point, she hopes to have the candidate list down to three by Jan. 27.

The second round of interviews will follow in early February. Plans are to name a person of interest following the second round. She said three board members can do a visit to the candidate’s home district where they can talk with residents in the community. A lone finalist will be named following this visit and the board will wait 21 days before making it official.

Following Strauss’ presentation, trustees met in executive session to discuss interim superintendent candidates but took no action.

In other business, Charles Tindol, athletic director, and Jackie Cate Jr. addressed the trustees about athletics protocol following a possible concussion.

Cate said the state legislature adopted HB 2038 in June of 2011 which addresses the protocol following an athlete’s possible concussion.

Tindol said the district has been following these protocols but have not kept adequate documentation. He assured trustees that they now have documentation in place.

Trustees unanimously voted to follow the protocol provided by Sports Medicine Clinic (Dr. H Moore) per state law.

Cate said this is not saying that an athlete with a suspected concussion see Dr. Moore. He said a parent can take their child to any doctor. The school staff and coaches, however, will follow the protocol Dr. Moore outlined before that student can return to athletics.

Cate urged all board members to take the two hour online class regarding concussions.

Tindol also addressed the athletic handbook and coaches.

He said he is preparing an athletic handbook which is near completion. He said certain things happened last year that should have been addressed. Tindol said he is continually striving to evaluate coaches and looking for ways to make things better.

Stevan Farmer, a 1998 IHS graduate, also addressed the trustees seeking their support in his endeavor to move the city forward.

Mark Stiles, trustee, was not present at the meeting.