Two candidates have dropped out, and the five-month search for a new Oak Ridge schools superintendent is down to three finalists.
- Dan Lawson, superintendent of Tullahoma City Schools in Tullahoma, Tenn.;
- Neyland Clark, superintendent of South Harrison Community Schools in Corydon, Ind.; and
- Roger Collins, superintendent of Nelson County Public Schools in Lovingston, Va.
The Oak Ridge Board of Education had scheduled interviews with five finalists. Those interviews, which lasted a total of eight to 10 hours, began Friday and continued Tuesday and Wednesday.
One candidate, Raymond Bandlow, withdrew before the interviews, citing salary issues, Oak Ridge Board of Education Chair Keys Fillauer said Thursday. Bandlow was most recently the superintendent of Fort Lee Public Schools in Fort Lee, N.J.
Another candidate, Kenneth Sorrick, was interviewed Friday but later withdrew, citing salary issues and his family’s desire to live in a larger metropolitan area, Fillauer said. Sorrick is a former superintendent of North Palos School District in Palos Hills, Ill.
The Oak Ridge schools superintendent job has a negotiable salary range of $140,000 to $150,000.
Fillauer said executive search firm Ray and Associates of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is doing follow-up interviews with the three remaining candidates today. One or more of the finalists could be invited back to Oak Ridge for a day to learn about the city and meet its leaders, possibly as early as Monday.
If all goes well, the school board could have a special meeting during the second week of December to approve the selection of a candidate and offer a contract, Fillauer said.
He said all three candidates were good, and the school board would likely be comfortable hiring any one of them.
The new superintendent could start sometime early next year, overseeing a school district of more than 4,000 students.
The current superintendent, Tom Bailey, is retiring at the end of the year. He has been superintendent since 2002.