Local News

District 161 staff, residents provide input in superintendent search

When creating a profile for the position of superintendent in Flossmoor School District 161, it takes a village — or in this case, a cross section of the community.

Various activities this week provided the means for district residents, community leaders and employees to express their thoughts about the characteristics most needed as a new superintendent is hired.

Under the guidance of BWP and Associates, the firm contracted by the District 161 Board of Education to conduct a nationwide superintendent search, several forums were held this week to garner opinions as the firm creates the profile.

A day-long series of meetings took place Tuesday, Jan 17.


“We had a good day,” said Mark Friedman, president of BWP. “We met with administrators, teachers, staff members and community leaders. They presented excellent ideas about the characteristics needed most in the new superintendent.”

Philip Ehrhardt, an associate at BWP, added, “We will do some additional work with some of the community leaders, to get more of their thoughts.”

On Tuesday evening, a community meeting took place as about 15 residents expressed their thoughts about the superintendent’s position and the future of the district. Their desired characteristics include integrity, communication, vision, innovation and humility.

Also on Tuesday, an online survey was posted on the district’s website. The survey is designed to allow more residents to provide their input about characteristics they’d like to see in a superintendent. The website is www.sd161.org. The survey will be available through Jan. 23.

Ehrhardt stated that applications for the superintendent’s post will close on Jan. 20. He said several dozen people have applied.

Friedman said the profile will be used as the firm screens applicants and begins interviewing selected candidates starting Jan. 30.

On Feb. 6, a list of four-to-six finalists will be forwarded to the board. Shortly thereafter, board members will begin a schedule of personal interviews with the finalists.

The new school chief will serve as a full-time replacement for Craig Doster, District 161’s superintendent for the past six years. School board members approved a separation agreement with Doster on Nov. 8. Doster resigned from his post; his contract officially expired on Dec. 31, although he is being paid for the remainder of the school year.

Michael Popp was hired as interim superintendent at the end of November. He will serve in that position until the end of June.

News by email

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Free weekly newsletter

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.
Most read stories this week