District Continues Search for Superintendent

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Because Dr. Jim Vaszauska will retire February, the district hosted a community meeting yesterday evening to get community feedback on the qualities the next superintendent should possess.

“Community feedback will greatly affect the final decision,” Principal Trent Dowd said. “Every student and parents’ thoughts count. The school board will be the one to select the final candidate, but they themselves are voted on by the community.”

Through surveys, community meetings and staff meetings, all community members can feel like they have a voice in the process if they choose to participate.

“I think that the superintendent should have an understanding of the people and culture to have a good feel for the district itself,” Dowd said. “Another thing is for him or her to be a skilled and respectful leader.”

Most of the community meeting was dedicated to getting feedback on what issues the next superintendent should be aware of and to fix.

“Mansfield never grew out of its ‘small town mentality’ even though it has grown past that,” an MHS faculty member said. “The superintendent needs to be approachable and respond back to community concerns.”

At the meeting, community members are able to address issues they have within the district such as student stress, LGBTQ representation, and teacher pay.

“There has been too much stress on students needing to take Pre-AP and AP classes to go to college,” an MHS faculty member said. “This has caused at least three of my students to have mental health issues.”

The school board wants to ensure the next superintendent can meet community needs and follow in Vaszauskas’ footsteps.

“I think the most important thing Dr. V. has done is make a strategic plan that every school in the district can follow,” Dowd said. “Thanks to him, the entire district can move forward.

Once the school board decides on the final applicant, that person will be publicly announced for 25 days to get community feedback.

“It always makes you a little nervous when there’s a big change like this and knowing how to keep going,” Dowd said. “But I trust our school board will make the right decision.”

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