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Bellevue District to Consider Accelerated Interview Process with Interim Seattle Superintendent

The Bellevue School Board plans to meet Friday to consider whether to start an accelerated interview process with interim Seattle Superintendent Susan Enfield, who expressed interest in replacing outgoing Bellevue Superintendent Amalia Cudeiro.

Update: The Bellevue School Board will meet to discuss this matter at 7:45 a.m. at the Educational Service Center (the same address as the ) at 12111 NE 1st Street, Bellevue.

Original story:

Speed is of the essence if the Bellevue School Board wants to consider interim Seattle Superintendent Susan Enfield as a replacement for Amalia Cudeiro, the Bellevue superintendent who announced her resignation last month, board members say.

The school board will meet Friday to consider whether to expedite an interview process with Enfield. Enfield's name surfaced last week in the Seattle Times as a possible candidate for Cudeiro's vacated position, though Enfield did not confirm or deny her interest for the Times article. 

Enfield, who was a finalist when Cudeiro was hired by Bellevue in 2009, expressed interest in Bellevue schools top job but is also being interviewed to head other school districts, said Bellevue School Board president Paul Mills.

But if even the district decides to accelerate the interview process with Enfield, that doesn't mean that other candidates have been ruled out, he said.

"We're still accepting applications," Mills said. "If we start an accelerated interview process, it does not necessarily mean that we've offered her a job."

About three or four other candidates have applied for Cudeiro's position, which has been advertised in EdWeek and other national publications, Mills said.

Mills said the board will continue to hold its next , but that he hopes that any accelerated interview process would not be the main topic of discussion.

The board hopes to ask the public about the priorities it considered during the last superintendent search in 2009, Mills said. The board also .

"Has Bellevue changed since that time? That's what we want to know," he said.

Bellevue Superintendent , after being on leave since mid-December to take care of her mother, who is ill with cancer and has suffered a stroke. 

Eva Collins, assistant superintendent of Instructional Services and School Support, has been serving as the district's Interim Superintendent. She told people gathered at a community forum Wednesday night that she is not interested in replacing Cudeiro permanently, saying that it wouldn't fit into her life at this time.

"I'm interested in getting back to my assistant superintendent role," she said. 

Cudeiro's announcement puts Bellevue on an abbreviated timeline if the board wants to find a replacement before the start of the 2012-13 school year. 

Board member Mike Murphy said that he wanted to avoid a transition year with an interim superintendent, which would mean a transition period in Collins' department for 18 months and potential lost momentum in district programs.

"Move out, get it done, don't analyze it to death," Murphy said.

Murphy said he also was concerned about the expiration of union contracts in two years, which would be the first thing a new superintendent would face if the superintendent search is a year-long process.

But board member Steve McConnell said that it was important that Bellevue not be rushed to judgement just because the end of the school year is in a few months.

"If we have to go through the same process in two to three years, we're just paying for the (shortened) process later," McConnell said.

The Bellevue board will meet at 7:45 a.m. Friday, though the location had not been decided at Wednesday's meeting.

Do the Right Thing February 10, 2012 at 02:50 AM
Just as long as Ricardo Cruz is asked to leave before she arrives. It's very important to finally end the corruption. Does Susan Enfield have ties to Ricardo Cruz (since he worked for Seattle Schools twice)?

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