Walla Walla board targets mid-month to name new school chief

Six semifinalists are expected to be chosen for interviews March 13, with three finalists interviewed the next week.

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WALLA WALLA -- Walla Walla Public Schools will have a new leader before the end of the month.

Now in the preliminary stages, a search for a new superintendent will ramp up in the next few weeks as the School Board narrows down six semifinalists to three finalists.

Superintendent Rich Carter announced in October he would retire from his position at the end of the school year. The School Board then started putting together a job application, and sought the public's input for defining the right qualifications. A consultant was hired to assist in the search process.

The district is accepting superintendent applications until March 5. The School Board will then choose six semifinalists to be flown in for interviews March 13. During those interviews, members of the public will be allowed to observe. A panel of district and community leaders has been established to work with the public on ranking the candidates.

Following the March 13 interviews, the board will select the top three applicants. Those finalists will be asked to return to Walla Walla March 15, 17 and 18 for full-day interviews and public engagement sessions. The public sessions will be scheduled those days at 5 p.m. in the district board room. Members of the public are again asked to attend, this time to personally get to know the finalists. The School Board hopes to name its new superintendent by March 18.

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