PRAIRIE GROVE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — The Prairie Grove School District reports that 14 people have applied for the role of superintendent after former superintendent Reba Holmes announced her retirement in last year.
Holmes is on paid leave after an incident last year where staff members were shown a safety training video that portrayed teachers and their biological children as victims of a school shooting.
Holmes’ last official day of paid leave is June 30. Pete Joenks is serving as Interim Superintendent until the position is filled.
Ken James, the lead consultant for national firm McPherson & Jacobson, is leading the search for a new superintendent.
“This search is going very well; we are very pleased with our search so far,” James said.
James said that students, teachers, administrators and other school staff have been surveyed as part of the search process.
“We wanted to get a complete picture of what the community wanted to see from their next superintendent,” James said.
James says that of the 14 candidates, the firm is hoping to recommend a select few during a meeting with school leaders next week.
“Everyone has been wonderful during this process, and we have a great field of candidates,” James said.
James was unable to comment on who or where the applications came from but noted that they received applications from within the district, within the state and even outside of the state.
The Prairie Grove School District has over 2,100 students enrolled. James is confident that whoever eventually fills the role will be an excellent fit.
“Any recommended finalists we bring in, we are confident that candidate can do the job,” James said.
The school board will publicly announce candidates they wish to interview, and interviews will take place the first week of May.
The school board will eventually select a candidate to fill the role, and that person will be expected to start July 1.