Dr. Laurie Hunter was unanimously chosen by the Concord and Concord-Carlisle Regional School Committees to be the next Superintendent of schools at a joint meeting on January 31st. Dr. Hunter is currently serving as Assistant Superintendent of Duxbury Public Schools.
A graduate of Boston College (BA ’90) and Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education (Med ’93), she earned her Ed. D in Educational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University in 2014. Prior to being appointed Assistant Superintendent in Duxbury in July of 2013, she served as Principal for 14 years in the Freetown-Lakeville Public Schools.
The selection was the culmination of a year-long process that the School Committees designed to maximize the opportunity for public participation to ensure it was inclusive and transparent. Elements of the process included an on-line survey, public forums, focus groups and a Superintendent Screening Committee comprised of stakeholders including School Committee members, teachers, staff, parents, and residents as well as public interviews of the three finalists.
The Superintendent Screening Committee was presented with seven candidates chosen from the field of applicants garnered by the executive search firm hired by the School Committees to help guide the search. The role of the Screening Committee was to narrow the field of seven candidates to three finalists who would be interviewed by the School Committees.
Johanna Boynton, Chair of the Superintendent Screening Committee, noted that she was very pleased with the quality and diversity of all seven of the candidates. Boynton said, “The Screening Committee spent three days interviewing the individuals chosen by the search firm and discussing their qualifications. In the end, we felt that we had three excellent candidates to present to the School Committees who would continue the work to find the right match.”
The three finalists each spent a day in the community and visited school sites spending time with students, teachers, and administrators as well as with School Committee members. All of the visits culminated with a public interview by the School Committees that included time for members of the public to ask questions.
“We were thrilled to see the strong field of candidates that the search produced. While all of the finalists were exceptional candidates, members of the Committees believed that Dr. Hunter exhibited those qualities and character traits that best matched the leadership profile developed as the result of the extensive public dialogue that was an integral part of this search process,” stated Bill Fink, Chair of the Regional School Committee.
Wally Johnson, Chair of the Concord School Committee added, “On behalf of the Committees, I want to thank all the people who participated in this process including those filled out the surveys, participated in the focus groups and screening committee and who took the time to communicate with individual members of the Committees.”
The decision is pending the successful negotiation of a contract and a background check; once those matters are addressed, Dr. Hunter will start on July 1, 2017.