Process Outlined for Boston Public Schools Superintendent Search
Mayor Michelle Wu and School Committee Chair Jeri Robinson announced the members of a nine-person search committee and the collaborative process for selecting a new Boston Public Schools Superintendent, as outlined by the Chair in Wednesday’s School Committee meeting. The announcement follows the mutual decision reached last month that Superintendent Brenda Cassellius would step down at the end of the school year. The search committee will focus first on gathering community feedback that will inform an accelerated process to select a new Superintendent in time for the next school year.
“As mayor I’m ready to use every platform and resource to ensure our young people will be a priority across every sector and institution in the city,” said Mayor Michelle Wu. “To meet the urgency and potential across BPS, we must not only choose a Superintendent who can build a long-lasting legacy, but also empower school communities and invest in a leadership team ready to collectively tackle our challenges and opportunities.”
"Securing a new BPS Superintendent through a collaborative and transparent process with our community is of the utmost importance to restore a sense of trust and unity between the school district and its constituents," said School Committee Chair Jeri Robinson. "By centering the voices of BPS families and students, external partners and stakeholders and the City of Boston at large, we will help ensure this critical decision is mutually beneficial as we seek to stabilize district leadership for the continued advancement and wellbeing of our BPS community.”
BPS last week posted a Request for Proposals (RFP) to select a search firm to help manage the process to hire a new superintendent. Search firms have until March 18 to respond to the RFP before the School Committee selects a firm by early April.
The search committee includes representation of BPS students, parents, teachers, school leaders, and community members. The search committee will host a series of public listening sessions starting in March to gather community input to shape the Superintendent’s job description and inform the interview and selection process. These listening sessions will include both weekday and weekend times to be as accessible as possible to Boston residents with different schedules. The meetings will be held on Zoom, recorded and posted online following the conclusion of each meeting, and will include live interpretation in all BPS languages. One listening session will be designated primarily for Spanish speakers.
The listening sessions will take place on:
- Wednesday, March 9, 6 - 8 p.m., Public listening session
- Tuesday, March 15, 6 - 8 p.m., Public listening session for Spanish speakers
- Thursday, March 24, 6 - 8 p.m., Student listening session
- Saturday, April 2, 10 a.m. - 12 p.m., Public listening session
Additionally, members of the public can submit written testimony via email to the Boston School Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org. In the coming days, the City will also post an online survey for community members to provide written input to inform the search and selection process.
Search committee members will review applications and interview candidates in executive session to preserve the confidentiality of the applicants and equity in the search process. The final candidates will be announced by early June, and interviews for the finalists will be conducted publicly in early- to mid-June. The search committee will make a recommendation to the School Committee, which will then vote on the person to whom to extend the offer of the Superintendent position.
The members of the search committee are:
- Pam Eddinger, President of Bunker Hill Community College
- Roxi Harvey, Chair of the BPS Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SpEdPAC)
- Lorena Lopera, Member of the Boston School Committee
- Marcus McNeill, Student at Fenway High School
- Michael O’Neill, Vice Chair of the Boston School Committee
- Dr. Carline Pignato, Head of School at Channing Elementary School
- Gene Roundtree, Secondary School Superintendent at Boston Public Schools
- Jessica Tang, President of the Boston Teachers Union
- José Valenzuela, Teacher at Boston Latin Academy
More information on the Superintendent search, including registration links to public listening sessions, can be found here.