The evaluating committee, which included board vice chairman Marshall Orson and members Vickie Turner and Diijon DaCosta, selected BWP after interviewing both firms.
“We know this is a very critical function of the board,” Orson said of selecting a superintendent, “and (the process) doesn’t come around very often. We’ve got to get it right.”
Officials said board members would be contacted individually by the search firm as it begins working to determine the type of candidate that would best suit the district's needs. Residents and former school board leaders have said the next superintendent should know how to address challenges faced by the district's students as well as being transparent, collaborative and able to establish relationships within the community, among other things.
Board member Joyce Morley reminded the board that she was not heavily involved in the previous search because she thought it to be tainted from the outset. She mentioned that the board ultimately fired the firm that handled the search that ended with Green's hiring, PROACT Search, due to misconduct allegations against SUPES Academy, which was run by the same person. At the time, the FBI was investigating a $20 million no-bid contract given by Chicago Public Schools to SUPES Academy and what role was played by the school's CEO, who is a former SUPES employee. DeKalb paid PROACT Search about $16,000 of its $25,000 contract for the search.
“A lot of questions were not asked … about disclosures for any relationships,” Morley said. “The previous process was a debacle. Bottom line is we don’t have time to waste.”
Turner said it would take a group effort to find the best candidate for the district.
“It is essential we get someone in here who understands the importance of building relationships,” she said. “They have to understand the culture of DeKalb County. And it’s going to take all of us (being involved). The stakes are high, and (they are) our children.”