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School Trustees Plan Search for Superintendent

School trustees met Tuesday to make plans for hiring a new superintendent--this time with community involvement built into the process.

The Simi Valley Unified School District will immediately begin advertising in educational trade journals, officials said.

Community forums at which residents can explain what they want in a leader are scheduled for April 8 and 20. Superintendent candidates would be screened through mid-July, with the help of community members. Trustees, however, did not set a date to hire a superintendent.

The district is seeking a permanent replacement for Dan Flynn, who was hired in the fall and released three months later. Flynn was the only candidate interviewed at the time, without a nationwide search and without community involvement in the search.

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“Community input is something we highly recommend,” said Peter Pillsbury, who will work with the California School Boards Assn. to help find Simi Valley a new schools chief.

The school boards association is charging $19,000 plus up to $7,000 in expenses to conduct the search.

The fee includes a yearlong mentorship service through which the association will instruct trustees on how to maintain a good relationship with the superintendent. In about a year’s time, Simi Valley has had two permanent superintendents and is about to get its second interim schools chief.

Ken Moffett, a distinguished educator in residence at Pepperdine University, is the latest interim superintendent. He is expected to start in mid-April.

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