Bishop Unified School District Close to Hiring New Superintendent

Last night,  Inyo County Superintendent of Schools, Barry Simpson discussed the new Bishop Unified School District Superintendent search at Bishop Union High School.

Simpson gave a presentation showing the results of a survey of about 180 people. The purpose of the study was to see what qualities citizens want most in a potential superintendent. 45.4% of the people who gave their thoughts in the survey worked for the school district, while other people polled were parents and concerned community members.

The poll discovered that public relations was the most desired need from a superintendent, meaning that people want a strong leader who participates in community outreach.

There were five categories in the survey that measured the most desirable qualities people want in a potential superintendent.

  1. Public Relations
  2. Management Style
  3. Budget
  4. Curriculum Management
  5. Facilities

Teachers say they believe the ideal candidate will have teaching experience, along with some administrative experience.

Those who took the poll also believe a superintendent who takes a strong collaborative approach with strong communication skills is desirable. Essentially, those polled want a team player who can lead but is open to the ideas of those surrounding the would-be superintendent.

The most important personality characteristics for a superintendent according to the survey go as follows.

  1. Honesty
  2. Strong Listening Skills
  3. Strong Communication
  4. Transparency

The least desired trait people want in a candidate is and individual who is a risk taker.

The next candidate may also be promoted from within, with the responses to the survey leaning in support of hiring a person currently in an administrative role within the district.

It is important to note that a survey of less than 200 people does not reflect the desires of everyone in the community. When asked about how Simpson and his staff can accurately portray what the community wants from such a small sample size, the Inyo County Superintendent said, “20% of people are connected to the school out of a population of about 12,000 people in the Bishop area. We got a good sample size, but we are not where we wanted it to be.”

The job is currently posted statewide until March 12. The board hopes to officially hire a candidate, and announce who will be appointed to the position in April.