Community focus groups slated to discuss Moffat County School District superintendent search | CraigDailyPress.com

Community focus groups slated to discuss Moffat County School District superintendent search

Community members and students to be asked for input regarding search

Michael Neary

Moffat County Board of Education President Darrell Camilletti, at the head of the table, and board members Darryl Steele and Charity Neal consider an issue at Tuesday’s board meeting.

Members of the Moffat County Board of Education, during a Tuesday meeting, announced two community focus groups designed to gather feedback related to the district's superintendent search.

One meeting will begin 6 p.m. today, in the Administration Building Board Room, and another will begin at 2 p.m. Thursday.

A representative from Colorado Association of School Boards, retained by the district to facilitate the search, is slated to lead the focus groups.

"It's not necessary to attend both; just one or the other," said Board Vice President JoBeth Tupa, who noted the focus groups will likely last no longer than an hour.

Tupa noted, too, that a focus group devoted to students will take place at 6 p.m. Thursday, also in the Administration Building Board Room. CASB is holding focus groups with district staff members, as well.

People are encouraged to RSVP to the district administration building at 970-826-6261, Tupa said, but she added that they may also come without an RSVP.

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According to a written statement from CASB, participants in the focus groups "will discuss the leadership qualities and skills necessary for the new superintendent to be successful," and the information collected "will be used to advertise the position and will be the basis of interview questions for candidates."

Current Moffat County School District Superintendent Brent Curtice accepted the superintendent's position at Garfield School District No. Re-2 last month, and he submitted his resignation to the Moffat County School District last week, said Moffat County School Board President Darrell Camilletti.

"We couldn't start this process until we had that," Camilletti said.

In a work session preceding the meeting, the school board discussed procedures regarding next school year's budget.

"We're going to try to get to the board, the last week in March, the priorities and recommendations from the stakeholders, from IBS and from the administrators," Curtice said.

By "IBS," Curtice referred to the district's Interest Based Strategies group. IBS is a process the district's negotiations team adopted four years ago to replace traditional bargaining, Moffat County Education Association members have explained. They noted the work of the IBS team "has changed slightly to include problem solving and … helping the district gather information about the state of the budget." Two members of the school board are on the team.

The IBS team has also spearheaded community meetings, often referred to as stakeholder meetings, designed to gather community feedback on the budget process. Three such meetings have been held so far.

Curtice also asked the board about teacher recruiting practices while the budget is under discussion.

"We have not gone out and spent any money going to job fairs," he said. "We were very aggressive last year. We don't want to go out into a job fair and find a great teacher and do all the work and (find out) we're in a hiring freeze."

After discussion, board members encouraged the district to recruit teachers, but with an eye toward potential budget limitations.

"The message is we want to responsibly continue recruiting," Camilletti said.

Curtice noted the district advertises positions in other ways, particularly online, as well.