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After Failed Search, Teachers Make Pitch for In-House Superintendent

The Moorestown Board of Education is still mulling its options after a failed superintendent search, though an interim administrator seems likely.

While the board of education weighs its next steps after a , members of the Moorestown Education Association (MEA) are baffled the job hasn’t been offered to assistant superintendent Kate Reilly.

MEA President Lisa Trapani asked the board Tuesday night whether it had re-advertised for a superintendent. Board President Don Mishler said they had not, nor had they decided whether to restart the search or find an interim superintendent.

Mishler did say however that it’s “really late in the process for hiring a permanent superintendent … Conducting a traditional search now would be unlikely very fruitful.”

Superintendent John Bach will end his five-year tenure at the end of the 2012 school year.

When asked by Trapani how the board planned to search for an interim candidate, Mishler indicated they would use various channels, including “personal contacts” and “word of mouth.”

His answer did not satisfy Trapani—or other members of the MEA in attendance—who said the community “deserves something more official” than word of mouth.

Elementary school teacher B.J. Lemaire said she felt, both as a parent and a teacher, the situation was “incredibly frustrating.”

“I went into this very optimistic,” she said, alluding to the community outreach the district and its search firm (West Hudson Associates) engaged in during the process. “And yet here we are, basically at square one.”

Lemaire rattled off a list of and said, “When I look at that list of things that came up with the survey, I see all these things in (assistant superintendent) Kate (Reilly) … I can’t understand how you’re not examining (her as a candidate).”

Reilly confirmed she was one of the candidates considered for the superintendent position during the search, but did not make it to the final round.

“I was very disappointed,” she said. “I wouldn’t have applied for the job if I didn’t want it.”

Reilly said as far as she knows she’s not being considered for a position as interim superintendent either.

and has served for many years in administrative and teaching positions with other districts.

teacher Bridget Potts said Reilly’s name was brought up by multiple members of the MEA in their correspondence with the district during the search.

Trapani also believes Reilly is qualified for the job and said, “I do not know why she was overlooked.”

Board members went into executive session following the public portion of the meeting and were not immediately available for comment.

The Situation March 21, 2012 at 12:12 PM
of course Mishler hasn't gotten around to it, he's too busy handing out 15k raises to landscapers.
Our Town March 21, 2012 at 03:01 PM
Can this town do anything in a straightforward manner? Executive search firms are a colossal waste of time and money. We are back at square one but I assume West Hudson got paid nonetheless, right? We've got, what, a six school district? It's not rocket science or finding someone with the skills to pull the Camden or Philadelphia districts from the clutches of fiscal despair. I find it hard to believe there aren't a bevvy of qualified candidates that would be more than happy making near the state cap. But then again, perhaps it's little of "what you know" and more "who you know".
Pete March 22, 2012 at 03:03 PM
Prroblem is that the clowns in this field all belong to the traditional good old boys network and really don't understand business. There are plenty of people on the Moorestown admin staff that know the ins and outs of educaation in the District, and I propose that a 2012 MBA graduate could easily handle this function and bring a "business" viewpoint to Moorestown. Or, we might get the clown genius Karzi, or whatever his name is, to return to Moorestown...........
frank gilanelli March 22, 2012 at 03:25 PM
So I'm to believe that a qualified candidate for a $175,000 position couldn't be found to work in a community with a school system that wants for nothing? Are you kidding me? This is absolutely astounding, especially in this economy! Is this a slick good old boy move to put an insider in the job? Moorestown taxpayers, it's time for a change. I don't care if Bobo the clown is running for a seat on the BOE, he/she will get my vote. The most recent failure of this incompetent Board should send a very clear message that it's finally time to clean house. Will someone please contact Bobo?
Tax Playa March 22, 2012 at 07:55 PM
So... the union wants an insider? .... That is reason enough for me not to hire her.... let's put a union crony in the superintendent spot.. LOL!
I smell a rat March 22, 2012 at 09:37 PM
As a taxpayer, I can't say that I'm too excited in a candidate that was passed on initially and then becomes a darling of the union. I can't imagine what these 'good old boy' comments are about other than the ramblings of a union schill. The last post was exactly on the money (let's not give away our money without receiving some value in exchange!).
Another spokesperson March 22, 2012 at 09:41 PM
Kudos to boe for no tax increase
Pete March 23, 2012 at 02:57 AM
If Tripinnini is for it, there is good reason to be against it..........
Another spokesperson March 23, 2012 at 03:02 AM
Pete should the town raise taxes for new library and town hall? Do you like button?
Pete March 23, 2012 at 03:12 AM
Last year I made my case for continuing to lease space and forget a new building. That went nowhere fast.
Another spokesperson March 23, 2012 at 03:16 AM
Will the novice candidates listen? If not will you support button?
Pete March 23, 2012 at 03:40 AM
I’ll phone the Long Island medium and get a reading. Do you support MammaBama?

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