OPS votes to re-start superintendent search

Posted at 10:34 PM, Aug 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-07 23:34:50-04

The Omaha Public School Board of Education voted unanimously Monday to start a new search for a superintendent.

The board voted to start accepting proposals from hiring firms starting tomorrow.

“We are all focused and committed to having a clear and transparent new search,” OPS Board President Lacey Merica said.

The superintendent search was put on hold when the three finalists dropped out of the running in March. The search firm hired then, McPherson and Jacobson, had their contract terminated by the board last month.

To try to avoid what happened last time, the board said they have more time to search and hope for a different outcome.

“One of the things we have done differently is we are opening the bid process for seven days,” board member Ben Pearlman said.

Starting Aug. 8, interested parties can submit their proposal and have until 2 p.m. Aug. 15. The goal is to have a new superintendent by December, a goal everyone is confident in.

“It was the timeline Mr. Evans was hired on. It is the timeline other major urban districts have used as well,” Merica said.

Transparency was a running theme during the board's discussion Monday night.

Mindful of complaints of the lack of transparency after the previous search, the committee this time will have public meetings and post their minutes online.

“That being said, we are talking about personnel decisions, so we want to sensitive to the applicant, but to the extent where every decision will be made by the full board in public will happen this time,” Perlman said.