TPSD may name head today

By Chris Kieffer/NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – Tupelo’s search for a new school superintendent may officially end today.
A press release sent by the school district on Monday said that a “significant announcement addressing the future of our 7,500-student public school system” would be made today.
No school officials would confirm, but the announcement is expected to be the naming of a new school superintendent.
The public announcement will be made today at 4 p.m. at the Tupelo High School Performing Arts Center. The school board will meet in special session at 3:30 p.m. at the PAC.
A notice posted about the meeting said its purpose is to “continue the process of consideration” for the new superintendent.
Tupelo completed interviews with three finalists for the job late last week. School board president Amy Heyer said the board is deliberating on those interviews and will make a decision based upon the input it received from community stakeholder meetings held last September.
Tupelo’s finalists included two Mississippi candidates and one from outside the state. A report in the Florence, Ala., Times Daily newspaper identified Muscle Shoals (Ala.) superintendent Jeff Wooten as one of the finalists.
Wooten was also named as one of three finalists for Oxford’s superintendent job.
Tupelo’s school board did not release the names of its finalists because it promised them confidentiality, Heyer said.
Some of the candidates wanted to be anonymous in case they did not get the job and stayed in their current job. The school board also noted some candidates said they would withdraw from the race if their names were revealed prior to the job being awarded.
The new superintendent will replace Randy Shaver, who was given an early release from his contract in April. David Meadows has served as interim superintendent.
The Mississippi School Board Association conducted the initial phases of the search, and 21 candidates applied for the job. The school board narrowed that list to seven finalists, whom it interviewed earlier this month.
Three finalists were brought back for a second round of interviews last week.
chris.kieffer@journalinc.com