School superintendent search narrowed to 7; Job start date July 1

Update: The field has been narrowed to three.

As the Beaufort County School District searches for a new superintendent after the departure of Valerie Truesdale to Charlotte, the Board of Education has narrowed the field to seven candidates.

The district will interview those seven anonymously and then narrow the field to three candidates, and then make the names of those three public.

The district expects to have a new superintendent in place by July 1.

Jackie Rosswurm, a 40-year educator who has served as the district's human resources chief for the past five years, has been acting superintendent since October.

Here are details from a release:

The Beaufort County Board of Education has decided to interview seven candidates in the next phase of its selection process to hire a new district superintendent.

Three finalists will be selected from those seven candidates, said Board Chairman Bill Evans. The names of the three finalists will be made public, he said, and they will travel to Beaufort County for a second round of interviews and also to attend public forums with local parents, educators and community members. Board members will visit the home districts of all three.

"The public forums will be a key part of the process," Evans said. "We hope people will come out and meet the three finalists and ask them questions and get to know them. We also hope that participants in the forums will share their evaluations of the three finalists with Board members."

The school district's former superintendent, Valerie Truesdale, retired in October and accepted a senior position in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School District. Jackie Rosswurm, the district's human resources chief, has been serving as acting superintendent but did not apply for the superintendent's position.

Ray and Associates, an Iowa-based firm hired by the Board to coordinate the national search, said that it received 122 applications from candidates in 42 states. The consultants conducted background checks on the 122 applicants and brought 11 candidates to the Board, which selected seven to interview Feb. 4-6. The three finalists, once selected, will come to the district for a second round of interviews with the Board Feb. 12-15 and for public forums.

The Board's goal is to have a new superintendent under contract by the first week in March, Evans said. Although the person selected will not likely report to work until July 1, Evans said the Board will seek opportunities for regular visits to the district prior to that date.

Filed in