Schools in need of superintendentsSeveral North Dakota school districts are on the hunt for a new leader. West Fargo and Bismarck are among five districts in the midst of superintendent searches.
By: By Kelly Smith , Forum Communications Co. , The Jamestown Sun
Several North Dakota school districts are on the hunt for a new leader.
West Fargo and Bismarck are among five districts in the midst of superintendent searches.
“To have two large school districts like Bismarck and West Fargo having openings at the same time is not fairly typical,” said Doug Johnson of the North Dakota Council of Educational Leaders.
However, school districts should receive an ample amount of applicants, he said, in light of districts elsewhere in the country facing massive budget cuts.
“I think in North Dakota, the opportunity for openings is going to be good,” he added.
Johnson said he thinks it’s merely a coincidence that West Fargo, Bismarck, Wahpeton, Central Cass and Center, N.D., districts all are searching for a leader.
It’s typical, he added, for district leaders to stay in a role for five to seven years.
After nearly four years in West Fargo, Superintendent Dana Diesel Wallace will leave this summer, citing new opportunities.
The West Fargo School Board decided last week to have the district’s administration conduct a regional search. They’ll decide the next steps in their search on Thursday.
Across the state, the Bismarck School Board is interviewing for a new district leader in April with plans to make a decision soon after.
Superintendent Paul Johnson is resigning to take a job in Bulgaria.
In Wahpeton, the school district is accepting applications now.
Wahpeton Superintendent Mike Connell is retiring after 21 years there. The 55-year-old said he wants to take time off for things such as fishing and elk hunting in Alaska.
The district is accepting applications until Jan. 21st, he said, and the school board plans to announce a replacement by Feb. 8.
In Casselton, the school district is taking applications until Feb. 1.
Former Moorhead ad-ministrator Mark Weston is serving a one-year interim role, which ends June 30.
However, he could be there longer than initially planned. The School Board asked him to consider the role, and he said this week that he will apply.
“I came out just thinking one year,” he said. “(But) they’ve just treated me very well.”
Kelly Smith is a reporter at The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead, which is owned by Forum Communications Co.