Wood Schools has director post do-over

PARKERSBURG – Officials did a second round of interviews Monday for the Wood County Schools director of elementary schools position after realizing previous interviews violated district policy.

The Wood County Board of Education meeting agenda was released June 18 and listed Christie Willis, assistant director of Title I, as the recommended hire for the director of elementary schools position.

Also on the agenda and up for a vote tonight is the hiring of Gihon Elementary School Principal Betsy Patterson as deputy superintendent, a newly created position.

Bob Harris, assistant superintendent of pupil and personnel services, said three people interviewed for the director position and two people interviewed for the deputy superintendent position. Harris said with the director position, county policy was not followed during the hiring process.

“Our county lists who is to interview anyone at the director level or above,” he said. “The people who were supposed to do that did not.”

Harris said the district’s two assistant superintendents are supposed to conduct the interviews and make a recommendation to the superintendent, who then has the option of requesting additional information or additional interviews.

Harris said neither he nor Mike Fling, assistant superintendent of school services, was involved in the interviews. Instead the interviews were conducted by incoming Superintendent John Flint.

“Mr. Flint had another individual in the room with him who does not work at the central office,” Harris said. He declined to name the individual.

Flint said the person was Tim McCartney, a former assistant principal at Parkersburg South High School who recently retired.

“He’s just a very capable, great educator,” Flint said.

Harris said the three candidates for the director position were re-interviewed Monday. Flint called the interviews “a second round,” and said he doubted there would be any change in the recommendation or in the board’s agenda. He also said the issue did not affect the deputy superintendent position.

Flint is set to begin as superintendent July 1, the day after Superintendent Pat Law retires. Harris said Law is on vacation and is not expected back in the office before his last day.

“Dr. Law has given John Flint the go ahead to represent him in these hirings,” Harris said.

Harris also said he believed the breach of policy was a mistake.

“It’s normal when there is a change in the administration for things to be overlooked,” he said.

Flint said it was a procedural issue and has been resolved.

“We’re in good shape,” he said.