The Valdez Star - Serving Prince William Sound and Copper River Basin

By Lee Revis
Editor, Valdez Star 

Help wanted: superintendent spot still open after candidate declines offer

School board continues search to replace Jim Nygaard who is retiring this year


January 31, 2018

The board of education was sent back to the drawing board last week in its search for a new superintendent.

After a round of in person interviews, the board had offered the superintendent’s position to Dr. Randy Trani of Corbett, Oregon – who later on the evening of Jan. 24 declined to take the position.

“The board is disappointed in this decision as we were excited by the possibility of having Mr. Trani lead the schools in a positive direction and build upon our strong position,” board president Joe Prax said in a letter published on the school district website. “However, we understand the decision and respect it.”

Fortunately, the board began the long and costly process of searching for a new superintendent last year – and feels it still has plenty of time to hire the best.

“The board feels strongly that we will not settle on just anyone,” Prax said. “The Valdez City Schools are in a perfect position for growth for the future and we will continue to look for the candidate who best fits the school's needs. We owe this to the students, staff, administrators, and community.”

While the board is well-positioned in the search, the prime time to hire educators and administrators in rapidly approaching. Nationally, March is the month where school districts nationwide conduct job fairs.

The board had narrowed down a large list of candidates to three names, earlier this month - Patrick Mayor of Wrangle, Brad Moore of Big Sandy, Montana and Trani.

Moore dropped out of the hiring process.

The board will meet for a special meeting Thursday night to discuss the renewed search.

That meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. at City Council Chambers.

Earlier this month, the board said that the consulting firm had “…reviewed, screened, and conducted extensive background checks on 28 applicants.”


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