Tell school board what you want for top job

Those who have ideas about what it takes to be a good (maybe even great) superintendent in Beaufort County can tell the people who will do the hiring at a series of meetings next week.

Please take advantage of the opportunity, especially teachers and parents who have an inside track on what has worked and not worked with superintendents past.

An online survey also asks participants to pick their top 10 qualities for the job out of a list of 33. (Go to www.surveymonkey.com/s/7B85292. Note that the survey closes at 8 a.m. Oct. 11.)

The characteristics to choose from are somewhat pedantic and repetitive, making them difficult to sort through and rank. The space for comments at the end probably offers the easiest and clearest way to get across your point.

We assume the candidates screened by the search firm will have the requisite professional qualifications. The personal qualities listed interest us. Three jump out:

  • Is strongly committed to a "student first" philosophy in all decisions.
  • Promotes positive student behavior conducive to student achievement/learning climate.
  • Inspires trust, has high levels of self-confidence and optimism and models high standards of integrity and personal performance.
  • As for that last item, self-confidence and optimism can go on a separate line. We interpret the main quality to be: Tells the truth, even when it's unpleasant.

    The forums will be held Oct. 10 and 11. Two sessions will be held each day at noon and 7 p.m. at separate locations in northern and southern Beaufort County. On Wednesday, they'll be at Whale Branch Early College High School and Hilton Head Island High School. On Thursday, they'll be at Bluffton High and Beaufort High schools.

    The best way to ensure school board members consider attributes you think are important for the superintendent's job is to spell out those attributes.