IPSD Board of Education starts search for new superintendent

The Board of Education held a meeting inviting the public to contribute their input on what they want to see in the new superintendent this Wednesday afternoon. Earlier this year, Dr. Karen Sullivan announced her retirement beginning in 2021. Since then, the IPSD Board of Education has made it its priority to find the next best leader for the school district. It comes down to characteristics, goals, achievements, and perspectives when looking for the next superintendent. 

The parents at the meeting speak for all parents in this district when they say they want to see a leader who is not afraid of change. “Someone who has an outside perspective. But has already lived a life. And is ready to come in and bring fresh eyes,” Ray and Associates consultant Lori Davis said.

Davis was brought in by District 204 to lead the Superintendent search and hold public meetings where she asks for different stakeholder’s perspectives. She also made sure to talk to some of the students at the high schools for their opinion by visiting Metea Valley earlier that day. She spoke for the students at the meeting by mentioning what the students had to say. 

Nevertheless, the school board still wants to keep the great aspects that make them a diverse community and family-oriented. 

Although there was a great conversation about how excellent the district is, the parents also spent a lot of time talking about the challenges the district faces and what they want to see done. 

The parents at the meeting were very engaged in conversation and brought up controversial topics like school boundary changes, the achievement gap between different groups of students, and the policies for vaping or any type of drug use in school. Unfortunately, a lot of students in the district are left out of educational opportunities that they don’t know about. A change they want to see is how these opportunities are introduced to students so everyone can have equal access to information which can open new doors that can help the achievement gap close. Metea Valley does a great job of making sure all their students are doing well in their classes and given help. Even if the achievement gap isn’t brought up at school, doesn’t mean it’s not there. 

The issue of vaping was also brought up by a parent. They discussed that this is a personal choice that needs stricter consequences so that the district can prevent this from their school buildings. The parents expressed how the policies concerning drug use should become stronger especially in high schools. 

“Because people have had a place at the table that opportunity is still going to continue and their voices are going to be heard and honored. And it has to be to address the issues brought up tonight,” Davis said. Davis ended the night by reassuring the crowd that by Jan 1, 2021, the district will have its new superintendent. The Board of Education will continue to find the best fit for our district.