The search for a new Schoharie school superintendent is down to two.
The search began in December with 25 applicants. The two finalists are Ballston Spa Central School Elementary Principal David M. Blanchard and former Jasper-Troupsburg Central School Superintendent Chad C. Groff.
Following a final interview, school board members plan to appoint a new superintendent in April with a start date of July 1.
Kathryn Gerbino is currently the interim superintendent for Schoharie. She took over for Brian Sherman, who retired on September 1.
Mr. Blanchard has been the principal of Wood Road Elementary School in the Ballston Spa School District since 2009. Prior to that, he was the principal of Pleasant Avenue Elementary School in Johnstown for two years. He was also an administrator with the Gloversville Enlarged School District from 2005 to 2007.
Mr. Goff was superintendent of the Jasper-Troupsburg Central School District in Steuben County from July 2004 to June 2014. He was also a school counselor at the same district from 1994 to 2004.
"The board was pleased with the qualifications of the candidates who applied for the superintendent position," commented school board President Marion Jaqueway.
"Our next step is to spend more time with the selected finalists before making a final decision for the position."
Following initial interviews with nine of the 25 applicants, school board members selected six semi-finalists to advance to a second round of interviews with "stakeholder" groups who represented a broad cross-section of the Schoharie school community, including parents, faculty, staff, and community members.
After interviewing the six semi-finalists in late January, the groups then shared their findings and opinions with the school board in early February.
School board members completed a third round of interviews last week.
Stakeholder group members did not make a recommendation, but spoke about the strengths and concerns they had about the candidates.
"The stakeholder groups contributed invaluable feedback and perspective for the superintendent search, and we are appreciative of their time and effort," Ms. Jaqueway added. "They helped the board to make an important decision impacting the future of our schools."
In addition to the stakeholder groups, district residents have been able to give feedback through an on-line survey on the district website that ran from October through December. A community meeting was also held in the fall. Through the survey and meeting, residents could give their opinions on the qualities they were seeking in the next superintendent, as well as the most important issues currently being faced by the district.
The superintendent's search is being coordinated by BOCES District Superintendent Charles Dedrick.