Interviews for Montgomery Public Schools’ superintendent start Monday. Here’s what you need to know

Editor’s Note: Dr. Avis Williams, candidate for the position, has taken another superintendent position.

Interviews for the next Montgomery Public Schools’ Superintendent begin Monday, March 28.

There will be five interviews for fcandidates over the next two weeks. Here’s a summary of what’s happened so far and what’s to come.

Meet the candidates for MPS superintendent

Dr. Melvin Brown, superintendent, Reynoldsburg City Schools, Ohio

Melvin Brown

  • Previous experience: Visiting professor at Ohio State University, deputy superintendent at Cuyahoga Falls City Schools, director of human resources at Cuyahoga Falls City Schools, regional vice president at Mosaica Education, Inc., Associate Director of ROSworks, LLC, principal at Spotsylvania County Public Schools, associate superintendent at Prince William County Public Schools, principal/ supervisor of multicultural education at Prince William County Public Schools

  • Education: Doctorate from the Ohio State University in Educational Studies, Master’s at Virginia Commonwealth University in Education Administration, Bachelor’s from James Madison in English

Anthony Lewis

Anthony Lewis

Dr. Anthony Lewis, Superintendent, Lawrence Public Schools Board of Education, Kansas

  • Previous Experience: Assistant superintendent at Kansas City Public Schools, director of elementary education — school leadership at Kansas City Public Schools, elementary principal at Montgomery Public Schools and high school special education/ science teacher at Montgomery Public Schools

  • Education: Doctorate from University of Missouri-Columbia in educational leadership and policy analysis, Master’s from Alabama State University in education administration, Master’s from Alabama State University in special education and Bachelor’s from Alabama State University in special education

Marla Sheppard

Marla Sheppard

Dr. Marla Sheppard, Deputy Chief of Academics, KIPP Public Schools Board of Education, Texas

  • Previous Experience: Deputy superintendent at Kansas City Public Schools, assistant superintendent at Fort Bend Independent School District and high school turnaround principal at Houston Independent School District

  • Education: Doctorate from the University of Houston in professional leadership, Master’s from the University of Houston in educational leadership and Bachelor’s from Texas A&M University

Donald Warren

Donald Warren

Dr. Donald Warren, Deputy Superintendent, Griffin-Spalding County Schools Board of Education, Georgia

  • Previous Experience: Interim superintendent and executive director at Griffin-Spalding County Schools, executive director of secondary education at Griffin-Spalding County Schools, director of curriculum and instruction at Henry County Schools, middle school principal at Houston County Schools, assistant middle school principal at Houston County Schools and math teacher at Houston County Schools

  • Education: Doctorate from University of Georgia in educational leadership, Specialist from University of Georgia in education leadership, Master’s from Georgia College & State University in educational administration & supervision, Bachelor’s from Georgia Southwestern State University

What’s Next?

There will be public interviews at the following dates. The interviews are expected to run from around 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., with a reception afterward. The interviews will take place at George Washington Carver Senior High School. The public is invited to both the interview and reception:

  • March 28 – Dr. Melvin Brown

  • March 31 – Dr. Anthony Lewis

  • April 4 – Dr. Marla Sheppard

  • April 5 – Dr. Donald Warren

Clare Weil, president of the school board, said the plan is to announce a superintendent on April 12th, but that could change.

What’s happened so far?

Dr. Ann Roy Moore announced she was retiring in August 2021. Weil said the board began looking for a superintendent consulting firm soon thereafter.

The Alabama Association of School Boards submitted their proposal in October and were hired in November, said Susan Salter, director of leadership development at the Alabama Association of School Boards.

The Alabama Association of School Boards has three tiers for their consulting, and Montgomery has the highest “platinum” tier, which includes a national search, according to Salter.

Once the Alabama Association of School Boards was selected, they have been “in motion,” said Weil.

In December, Dr. James Wright, Alabama Association of School Boards, had meetings with all of the school board members. The Alabama Association of School Boards wants the new superintendent to be a good fit with the school board team.

“And so we always include these one on one meetings between the consultants and individual board members, so that the consultant has a chance to get to know the board members to just know what they’re looking for, hear directly from them, what their priorities are, what they think the challenges are that the new superintendent will have to deal with that sort of thing,” said Salter.

The school board was also provided with legal trainings on conducting a school board search in December, according to Salter.

Starting in January, the Alabama Association of School Boards opened a survey for community members to submit their feedback and held events for the community.

The job opening was closed on March 1. The finalists were presented to the board on March 15 at a special meeting.

The board members have since been going through the candidates’ resumes with a “fine-tooth comb,” said Weil. They are additionally doing web research and calling references.

Jemma Stephenson is the children and education reporter for the Montgomery Advertiser. She can be reached at [email protected] or 334-261-1569.

This article originally appeared on Montgomery Advertiser: Here’s the latest on the search for Montgomery’s next school superintendent

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