Newark principal selection process indicative of overall community-centered approach, says superintendent
Published July 29, 2018 | Brick City Live
School auditorium. Photo by Nathan Dumlao/Unsplash
At the helm during the first school year where Newark Public Schools have local control, new Superintendent Roger Leon brought a community-based principal selection process to bear on the hiring of seven new school principals for the district.
León received unanimous approval from the Newark Board of Education last week to the new principals for three elementary schools, three high schools and one specialized school. According to NPS, 48 community members participated in the selection process.
The selection process begins with a central office screening and candidate review of prospects who apply through the school district’s online application website at LeadNewark.com. Those who have been vetted are then evaluated by the human resources department via a “Selection Day” process, which entails community-based interview panels that include a cross-section of teachers, students, community members, families and other stakeholders. Top candidates who emerge from that process are interviewed by the superintendent, who recommends his hiring choices to the Newark Board of Education.
The seven new principals who emerged from this process did so with 100 percent backing of León’s choices by the school board. León said the community engagement that characterized principal selection will be applied to other aspects of governance for Newark Public Schools as the school year gets underway.
“Empowering the community in decision-making will undoubtedly result in high levels of engagement in all matters related to education,” he said during a public forum just after his appointment to the superintendent position.