The Wake Community Network is accusing the Great Schools in Wake Coalition of making "dubious" claims in criticizing the way the Wake County school board hired Anthony Tata to be the new superintendent.
In a press release today, Joey Stansbury, director of the Wake Community Network, challenges the Dec. 23. claim from GSIW chairwoman Yevonne Brannon that the public met with prospective finalists in past searches.
This is a case where it may depend on what superintendent search you're discussing.
Stansbury focuses on the prior search that led to the school board promoting Del Burns in 2006 after an internal search. Like the search used to hire Tata, it was also a closed process in which Burns was the only finalist who was revealed by the board. (Former school board member Carol Parker has said there was one other internal applicant who also applied in 2006.)
Using the timeline announced in 2006, Stansbury says the board followed "a hurried and closed process in selecting Del Burns." He points to how the board met in closed session on Jan. 31, 2006 to discuss internal applicants and then hired Burns on Feb. 16, 2006.
Stansbury also argues the current school board made more of an effort to meet with the community that what was done in 2006. That time, the board got much of its community feedback from online surveys conducted by the N.C. Schools Boards Association. Wake had gotten more than 1,500 responses from the community and more than 900 from staff.
The school board also followed a secretive search in 2000 when Bill McNeal was the only person who applied when they did an internal only hunt.
But in 1995, the last time before Tata that Wake went with a national search, the board went with an open process. The board brought in both finalists for the position to meet with the public before eventually hiring Jim Surratt.