MTYT: Business leaders want best candidate for superintendent

By Gary McNair - bio|email

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) - I don't think there's a job in New Hanover County more critical to the success of this area than the superintendent of schools.  The thousands of students who pass through that system have a huge impact on how things ultimately shape up around here.

Those students and their teachers need quality leadership – the kind of leadership that can move our schools into a position that sets an example for others.  We have that opportunity right now.  That's why I joined with several others in this community to request the current school board allow the business community, and the community at-large, to be active participants in the interviewing process.

[Click here to read the letter]

But the bottom line is the New Hanover County School Board should be doing everything possible to make sure the best candidate available ends up being our next superintendent of schools.   The time is now to throw out past hiring practices and include all the stakeholders this time - business leaders, teachers, school administrators, and parents.

It might slow down the process a little, but the benefit of knowing we've got the best person leading our school system into the future will be well worth it.

That's my turn.  Now it's your turn.  To comment on this segment, or anything else, email me at

Emailed comments from viewers:

If the business community is allowed to have input into the interviewing process for the new school superintendent, will that mean that the school board chair will be included when the hospital needs a new CEO or when one of our local TV stations needs a new general manager?  Maybe the new superintendent will like to sit in on interviews for a new airport director when the time comes.

Leave school business to the schools and let area realtors, as they always do, point newcomers to the school(s) that best fit their children.


Our education system does deserve the best, but a committee to hire that person is not the way to do it. We have more than adequate people in place to make that decision.


I disagree with your comment of  May 4th that everyone -- "stakeholders" in your editorial -- in New Hanover county should have an input to the hiring of the new school superintendent. Do we not vote for school board members? Isn't if part of their job to hire responsibly? Should we "stakeholders" micromanage all of our elected officials' decisions? Where would you draw the line?

May I participate in your hiring practices and programming at WECT?


I am not a local, but, if I was, I'd certainly stand with the concept of attempting to include all stakeholders in selecting your new superintendent of schools. I hope your idea gains support.


After reading about the"LETTER" in the Star-News and hearing WECT's general manager pontificate on tv, I have just one question.

Exactly what are the credentials, of the letter writers, which qualifies them to enter the selection process? Which of them has any degree in educatio, much less educational administration?

After reading the local fish wrapper and watching the excuses for news on the local tv channels, I would think their time could be much better spent improving the delivery of NEWS to the local community.

Let the duly elected NHC School Board, several of whom have degrees in education or educational administration do their job.

Of course, if they let you into the process now, we won't have to listen to your second guessing after the fact.


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