Newhall District to begin superintendent search

The Newhall School District Office. Dan Watson/The Signal

The first step in the Newhall School District’s superintendent search process is set to begin Tuesday when the district’s Governing Board hears presentations from two potential superintendent search firms.

“We’re looking for somebody that is going to give us a full package,” Board President Philip Ellis said.

The chosen firm will look for a replacement for current Newhall Superintendent Paul Cordeiro, who announced that he’ll retire at the end of the school year after three and a half years with the district.

This will mark the second time in four years the Newhall district will go through the superintendent search process.

On Tuesday, the district will hear from two search firms that both have experience in the Santa Clarita Valley: Leadership Associates and The Cosca Group.

“They’re pretty close in price and in what they offer,” Ellis said. “They all offer community outreach to see what the community is looking for… They’ll meet with all of the stakeholders and the NTA and the NESP, the district’s two negotiating bodies.”

Leadership Associates, a California executive search firm, has prior experience with the Newhall School District, helping them find Cordeiro during the district’s search years ago.  They also completed searches for the Castaic Union School District as well as more than 365 other districts throughout California.

Of its completed searches, more than 85 percent of superintendents selected have remained in their positions for more than five years.

The firm’s mission is to support each district’s unique culture and to find a leader that best fits the needs of each school district.

As a consultant, Leadership Associates works in nine phases from its initial meeting with the board to a new superintendent signing paperwork.

Overall, Leadership Associates’ all-inclusive fee is $23,500.

The Cosca Group also has experience locally, having completed a superintendent search for the Sulphur Springs Union School District, as well as more than 100 other searches throughout the country.

Of its selected superintendent, 91 percent have “longevity” in their chosen districts, according to The Cosca Group.

As a consultant, The Cosca Group works in five phases with workshops an ongoing mentoring for an additional year in its final phase.  It also includes an optional sixth phase for additional superintendent support that includes goal setting, evaluations, board relations and role functions.

Its process, which can be modified with the needs and preferences of the board, is expected to begin in late-January before accepting applications until March 30 and appointing a new superintendent May 15.

Overall, The Cosca Group’s all-inclusive fee is $23,664.

Ellis said the board’s choice will be based on the way the search firm “fits” into the goals and vision of the Newhall district.

“We want somebody who understands what we’re looking for and is able to produce to that,” he said.

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