School chief search: 3 left

The Findlay school board has narrowed its superintendent search to three candidates, and now plans to pick a new school chief in February.
Tod A. Hug, superintendent of Ayersville Local Schools; Edward Kurt, superintendent of Margaretta Local Schools; and William B. “Brent” Welker, superintendent of Eastwood Local Schools, will all be invited to visit the district with their spouses during the next three weeks.
“We think we have three very strong candidates for this job,” said Shane Pochard, school board president.
During their visits, candidates will receive tours of the schools and overviews of the community, according to the school board. On Jan. 24, each candidate will meet with a focus group of about 30 people, with whom they will share information about themselves and participate in a question-and-answer session.
The meetings will take place at Glenwood Middle School. Members of the three focus groups will provide written feedback about each candidate to the school board. The groups will be made up of faculty, students and community members. The meetings will not be open to the public, Pochard said.
“It’ll provide us one more chance to get to know the candidates,” Pochard said.
The district’s superintendent search started in October and the board had planned to pick a new school chief by the start of winter break on Dec. 23.
Instead, the district decided to take additional time to seek out more applicants for the position, including finalists Hug and Welker. Kurt is the only finalist who initially applied for the job, Pochard said.
“This is such an important hire,” Pochard said. “We wanted to find someone who’s a good fit. We didn’t want to rush it.
Current Findlay Superintendent Dean Wittwer was sought out by the district in 2005 when the district hired him away from Wapakoneta City Schools.
With a decision coming in February, Pochard said the new superintendent will have ample time to make the transition into the position with Wittwer’s assistance. Wittwer is scheduled to step down in July.
“That’s why we started this so early,” Pochard said. “We wanted to get someone who could be a good representative of the district.”
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