LORAIN – By noon Tuesday the Lorain Academic Distress Commission was halfway through interviewing CEO candidates, who were tight-lipped about how the discussions went, for the day.
The first interview conducted by the commission was James Henderson, who is the former associate superintendent for academic support for St. Louis Public Schools, St. Louis, Mo. and current CEO of educational consulting firm Impeccable Resources.
Henderson said his interview “went exceptionally well” but declined to comment further.
The second interview Tuesday was Lloyd Martin, who is the president and CEO of Universal School Solutions in Orange Park, Florida and has previously worked as the superintendent of the Academy for Urban Scholars in Columbus and in the Mansfield, Ohio school district.
Martin, who is the only candidate to have served as the head of a school district, also previously worked as a senior research advisor for Atlantic Research Partners, the firm the commission hired to assist with the search.
Martin declined to comment on how his interview went and said he would be speaking more at a CEO Candidates’ Night at 6 p.m. tonight in the media center of Lorain High School, 2600 Ashland Ave.
Other finalists having their interviews on Tuesday include David Hardy, deputy superintendent of academics for St. Louis Public Schools, St. Louis, Mo., and Vilicia Cade, senior director of secondary curriculum and professional development for Christina school district in Wilmington, Del.
Eric Thomas, chief support officer for University of Virginia Darden/Curry Partnership for Leaders in Education, Charlottesville, Va., will be the only finalist interviewed on Wednesday.
The Lorain district is seeking a CEO after failing test scores and poor state report card grades caused it to be classified by the state as under academic distress in 2013.
State House Bill 70, passed in 2015, states that if a district is in academic distress and under the supervision of an academic distress commission for four years, the old commission will be disbanded and a new one will be appointed to hire a CEO to take over.
District Superintendent Jeff Graham, who is getting ready to begin the final year of a three-year contract, applied for the CEO position but was told by a member of Atlantic Research Partners that he was at a “distinct disadvantage” by being the current superintendent and therefore, Graham has said he was not surprised he was left off the list of finalists.
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