Two Seaford educators will address National School Board Association

By Lynn R. Parks

For the first time, representatives from the Seaford School District will make a presentation during the annual meeting of the National School Board Association. Superintendent Shawn Joseph and school board president Mike Smith will travel to San Diego next month to talk about how to set the stage for a good relationship between a school superintendent and a school board.

Joining them will be Sharon Cox, a consultant with McPherson and Jacobson LLC, an executive recruitment and development company based in Omaha. That company oversaw the procedure that resulted in Joseph being hired. He started as superintendent in February 2012.

The presentation will be based on his experiences in Seaford, said Joseph.

"I think that the board and I had a great start," he said. "We shared a commitment to engage the community and we worked to be transparent, to gather feedback and to show people that we were listening to that feedback."

Joseph said that superintendents throughout the country typically stay in one position for less than seven years.

"A lot of that has to do with changing dynamics on the school board," he said. "It's always important for board members and superintendents to go to training together, so that they understand their roles and how they can support each other."

The 75-minute presentation is titled, "The First 100 Days of the Superintendent/Board Relationship: Creating Community Momentum." Joseph, Smith and Cox submitted a synopsis of their talk to the National School Board Association's peer-review board and it was selected for presentation.

It will offer practical advice on ways to help a superintendent get off to a good start, Joseph said. "Learn from the Seaford School District about key aspects of the relationship relating to creating a shared vision, establishing hiring protocols, engaging the community and identifying district priorities," the description reads.

The presentation will be open to 150 people and will take place Saturday, April 13.

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