School board hires a firm to help in its superintendent search

At a special meeting Wednesday night, the Bellevue School Board hired the search firm, McPherson & Jacobson, to help in the district's superintendent search.

Mike Boring is a consultant with  McPherson & Jacobson

Mike Boring is a consultant with McPherson & Jacobson

At a special meeting Wednesday night, the Bellevue School Board hired the search firm, McPherson & Jacobson, to help in the district’s superintendent search.

The decision came after the only other firm it was considering, Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates (HYA), said it did not want to be involved in Bellevue’s search process “because it doesn’t feel that trust has evolved enough with the board of directors,” according to school board president, Paul Mills.

Bellevue had used HYA in its 2008 superintendent search.

At the special meeting Wednesday night, representatives from McPherson & Jacobson, Albert Cohen (pictured below) and Michael Boring, gave a presentation outlining their methods and timeline for the search, in addition to answering questions posed by the board.

The search firm, which is based in Omaha, Nebraska but has more than 80 consultants in 24 states will cost the Bellevue School District $26,000, which excludes fees such as transportation costs for finalists to come interview.

With the help of the consultants, the school board is looking to have the position filled by the looming end of the year, but, if no viable candidate is produced in such a short timeframe, the fee would also cover the district to continue the search into 2012-2013.

“There’s no doubt about it that we’re late in the process, but we have a good shot at it,” Cohen said.

The consultants gave May 21-23 as potential dates for finalists to come visit the school district. The two will start their work with Bellevue tomorrow.

To learn more about McPherson & Jacobson, go to

McPherson & Jacobson’s plan for the superintendent search

Phase 1:- Establish characteristics of the new superintendent- Establish timeline for superintendent search- Determine advertising venues

Phase 2:- Stakeholder input meetings- Develop and distribute application and advertising materials- Recruit and track applicants

Phase 3: – Evaluation and reference checks of applicants- Selection of applicants to be interviewed- Develop interview questions

Phase 4:- Candidates meet with stakeholders- Interview of candidates- Selection of new superintendent


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