Meetings set for superintendent search

Search team seeks public comment to create profile of desired traits

In seeking a new school superintendent for Palo Alto, search managers said they're trying to create a profile of the ideal replacement for Superintendent Kevin Skelly.

To elicit public comment, consultants from search firm Leadership Associates, which the board selected last week, will hold a special meeting with the Board of Education this Wednesday, March 19, as well as three public forums on March 25 and 26.

The firm is asking people to answer the question, "What personal and professional qualities for an incoming superintendent will be a match for the Palo Alto Unified School District?"

Based on the answers they get, search team leader Peggy Lynch, a former southern California school superintendent, said her group will rank the characteristics sought and develop a profile to circulate in advertising the position.

Skelly, who came to Palo Alto as superintendent in the summer of 2007, announced last month that he plans to resign effective June 30.

Wednesday's special board meeting, to be held from 10:30 a.m. to noon in the boardroom of school district headquarters (25 Churchill Ave.), will also include an overview of the search process and finalization of a timeline.

A public forum will be held Tuesday, March 25, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Jordan Middle School, 750 N. California Ave. A second public forum will be held Wednesday, March 26, from 9 to 10 a.m. in Conference Room A at the school district headquarters, 25 Churchill Ave. A third public forum will be held later that day from 4 to 5:30 p.m. in the boardroom of school district headquarters, 25 Churchill Ave.

For updates on the superintendent search process, the district is directing people to the Superintendent Search web page or to Skelly's administrative assistant Kathleen Ruegsegger at (650) 329-3737 or

— Palo Alto Weekly Staff


Like this comment
Posted by Honesty and Transparency a Must
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 17, 2014 at 11:22 am

No more Skellytons in the Closet! It's time for a Superintendent that takes direction from a Board that takes direction from the taxpayers.

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Posted by vote the bums out
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 17, 2014 at 12:02 pm

So they chose Leadership Associates. How better to signal that they won't really be listening anyway?

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Posted by Overhaul needed
a resident of Jordan Middle School
on Mar 17, 2014 at 4:38 pm

Not only do we need an honest, capable and responsible superintendent, we also need to replace,the sooner the better,me ery single member of the BOE with honest, capable, and responsible people.

Nothing less, please.

Like this comment
Posted by Enough is Enough
a resident of Addison School
on Mar 17, 2014 at 9:32 pm

The fact that they chose Leadership Associates makes me feel like these meetings will be a waste of time. The board members always do what they want at the end. They just do these forums to give us the Kool Aide, so we think that they are really taking our suggestions. CAC, was the group that insisted the most on someone who could work with parents of special needs. They only listen rich parents who give big donations, so the donations do not stop coming. Last week at the meeting where they interviewed the firms, a community member asked them not to hire Leaderships Associates since last time when they found Skelly, they did not found out about the Poway District scandal and the suits. That was a big indicator that he was not going to be someone to work with our families, at least not the special needs, the children who needs more support. BIG MISTAKE, and here we go again. In fact Leadership Associates should be financially responsible for the suits and law fees for the money that has been taken from our students' education to pay the District lawyers and even pay to the parents of the students who are taking the district to court. It is only fair. Why do we need more of this?
I think we do not just have a problem with our super, but also with the members of our board members. Their behavior to parents and students is at question at this time, cutting mikes, getting upset when not in control. It is awful. They are supposed to be educated people. How can they just loose it like that? At least some parents are not educated and they get upset, it is because they are not professionals, or because as a parent of special education and dealing with a district who does not meet their needs is really stressful. They have an excuse, but there is no excuse for the board members

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Posted by Overhaul needed
a resident of Jordan Middle School
on Mar 18, 2014 at 7:10 pm

I suspect that this meeting is just a formality, going through the motions, a lip-service, if you will--not really productive or accomplishing anything.

The fact that the BOE has hired a headhunter means that the BOE has not listened to its public the last two years, and has not communicated anything important to the headhunter, such as, "Do a thorough background check!" or, " Interview the candidate in person, and do it more than once!" or, " Triple check the resume!", or, " Actually talk to former employers!"

No, the BOE does not consider THOSE things of any importance, just the useless, flashy stuff.

Like this comment
Posted by You get what you pay for
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 18, 2014 at 8:33 pm

This is already a done deal.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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