[BHS Etree] BUSD: School Board in Final Stages of Superintendent Search

BHS etree bhs at lists.lmi.net
Fri Aug 31 14:32:59 PDT 2012

PLEASE do not reply to this email, contact Mark Coplan, markcoplan at berkeley.net

BUSD School Board in Final Stages of Superintendent Search
(BERKELEY, CA) ― The Berkeley Unified School District Board of Education announced that they are in the final stages of their comprehensive, national search for a new superintendent, having unanimously narrowed the field of candidates down to one finalist, Dr. Edmond Heatley. 
“Berkeley is a very vibrant community that has high expectations of and high levels of support for its public schools,” said Board President John Selawsky.  “The Board is looking for a new superintendent who is an educational leader with the talent and experience to lead our schools in meeting our academic goals and address our fiscal challenges.”

Although he is the finalist, the Board has not yet approved a contract with Dr. Heatley.  On Thursday, August 30 and Friday, August 31 a district team, headed by School Board member Karen Hemphill, traveled to Clayton County Public Schools—a countywide school district near Atlanta, Georgia, where Dr. Heatley is superintendent—to conduct a site visit.  The visit included interviews with school board members, parents, teachers, staff, district administrators, union leadership, and community leaders.  The site visit team will be meeting with the Board on September 5 to share their perceptions and insights regarding the site visit.

The site visit is the final step of an extensive vetting process to verify Dr. Heatley’s credentials and is conducted in addition to the required background checks.  Once this due diligence is completed, the Board will be in a position to formally offer Dr. Heatley an employment contract.  That decision is expected to come before the Board in September.

"I am excited about the opportunity to join a high achieving team focused on ensuring that every student has the opportunity to achieve greatness.  I believe in a fair break for every child and that all students can learn.  It is great to see that the Berkeley community feels the same way, putting action behind their words,” said Dr. Heatley.

Early this year the Board undertook an extensive public input process involving over 600 Berkeley residents and district stakeholders who responded to surveys and participated in focus groups.  The result was a leadership profile that prioritized the characteristics that the Board and the community want in a new superintendent.  Of all the candidates, the Board was unanimous in concluding that Dr. Heatley best possessed such characteristics.

Instructional Leadership
Under Dr. Heatley’s leadership, the number of students failing to meet expectations on Georgia’s standardized exams has declined across all racial and ethnic categories, particularly among African-American and Latino students; participation rates in AP and IB classes have increased; and overall daily student attendance has grown.  Dr. Heatley has also spearheaded efforts that have been successful in improving graduation rates and college and career readiness.
Effective Communicator
When Dr. Heatley arrived in Clayton County, voters had rejected the district’s budget as allowed under Georgia law.  Dr. Heatley undertook an extensive community process to listen to the community’s concerns and, in turn, to educate the community regarding the realities of the district’s finances.  Since then, voters have approved the district’s budget every year under Dr. Heatley’s superintendency.  Additionally, Dr. Heatley has facilitated the development of the first district and community strategic plan.  He has also overseen a substantial increase in the number of community information forums and parent workshops and in the number of community members attending district-sponsored meetings.
Skilled Manager
Clayton County is a large district with approximately 52,000 students and over 7,500 employees serving in 70 school sites.  During his tenure as Superintendent in Clayton County, Dr. Heatley was able to regain full accreditation for the district and close a significant budget shortfall while maintaining the district’s core educational programs.  He was also instrumental in building significant community partnerships and in creating programs to support graduating seniors.  Dr. Heatley has extensive experience in California where he has been a site administrator, an assistant superintendent, associate superintendent, and a superintendent prior to his tenure in Clayton County.
At the outset of the superintendent selection process, the community was informed that the process would involve (1) a public process to compile the leadership profile, (2) Board interviews of candidates in private, using the profile as an evaluation tool, (3) a site visit, if possible, and (4) a public announcement of the name of the finalist prior to final consideration.
The Board will make a final decision on whether to formally offer Dr. Heatley an employment contract in September.  Should the Board make such an offer and should Dr. Heatley accept, stakeholders and community members will be provided with multiple opportunities to meet Dr. Heatley and hear about his vision for Berkeley upon his arrival. 

Additional Background on Dr. Heatley: http://www.berkeleyschools.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Heatley-Additional-Background.pdf
Read Dr. Heatley's Biography:  http://www.berkeleyschools.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Heatley-Bio-1.pdf
See http://www.berkeleyschools.net/superintendent-search-2012/ for additional information regarding the superintendent search.
Mark Coplan, Public Information Officer
Berkeley Unified School District
510-644-6320 Cell: 510-472-3811

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