WOODSTOCK – More than 100 people sat in on forums for District 200 superintendent finalists last week, questioning them on topics from their long-term vision of the district to their experience with unions, district officials said.
Each of the three finalists had their day of touring schools, meeting district personnel and appearing in front of the public before a final interview with the school board. Attendance at public forums ranged between 110 and 120 people per afternoon, Board President Paul Meyer said.
“They all handled themselves great,” Meyer said of the finalists. “It’s going to be a tough decision for the school board. They’re all excellent candidates, they all have very strong backgrounds and they all did their homework.”
The three candidates are Mike Moan, chief academic officer of Huntley District 158; Dr. Michael Popp, executive director, K-12 in Indian Prairie School District 204; and Jeff Schwiebert, superintendent of North Scott Community School District in Eldridge, Iowa.
The board is meeting to discuss the candidates Sunday night and could make a final decision, although it wouldn’t be announced until after the board visits his school district and the candidate agrees, Meyer said.
After a short reception at each forum, candidates introduced themselves and spoke about their backgrounds and the skills they could bring to District 200. Later, Meyer posed questions written by audience members.
“We talked about the candidates’ vision for 10 years down the road for Woodstock,” Meyer said. “We asked them if there were any programs or incentives that they were doing in their current district that they thought might work well in our district.”
Candidates were also asked separate questions about their experience working with diverse populations, unions and other publicly funded organizations like police and city councils, District Spokeswoman Carol Smith said.
After the forums, each candidate met with the school board for more than two hours, Meyer said. Board members posed questions based on their previous interview and followed up on their interactions with the public. But candidates also had questions for the board, Meyer said.
“Hiring is not a one-way street,” he said. “It has to be a fit both ways, and that’s what I hope we will achieve with this.”