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NUSD Board to Hold Two Special Meetings on Superintendent Search

Newark Unified Board of Education to meet with likely interim superintendent, then interview candidates for the permanent superintendent position with the district.

The Newark Unified School Board of Education will hold two special meetings this week related to the district’s search for a new superintendent to succeed Kevin Harrigan.

The first special meeting will begin at 3 p.m. on Friday and will focus on hiring an interim superintendent.

The second will start at 7:15 a.m. on Saturday to interview applicants for the permanent position of superintendent of schools.

Interviews with candidates will be held during closed sessions at both meetings. Time is allotted for public comment before the closed sessions.

The agendas were released Wednesday afternoon — one day after Board President Charlie Mensinger to Janis Duran for interim superintendent services at the board's regular board meeting.

Duran currently serves as Hayward Unified School District's superintendent and was previously superintendent for San Lorenzo Unified School District.

Mensinger told Patch Wednesday evening that Friday's meeting will give board members the opportunity to meet with Duran, discuss personnel issues and interview her further. He said that the board has every intention of offering her a contract. 

"She's got an outstanding history and an outstanding background," Mensinger said.

Duran is a retired superintendent who has served in a number of school districts since her retirement as an interim superintendent during transitions between leaders, Mensinger said.

"She just wants to help districts get back on their feet. ...And she lives in Newark, so she has a vested interest in us," said Mensinger.

He added that Duran's appointment as interim superintendent is "perfect" for the needs of Newark Unified as it proceeds with finding its next superintendent.

How many candidates will be interviewed at the Saturday meeting has not been disclosed.

The identities of those candidates has also been kept confidential in accordance to board policies directed by Government Code 6252-6260 that keeps information and records pertaining to closed sessions, negotiations and student records from being released for public disclosure.

At its June 7 meeting, the board approved a contract with Leadership Associates to provide consultant services to the Newark Unified School District during its search for a permanent superintendent.

Whether a full search will be conducted is yet to be determined.

The district has already agreed to pay the firm $7,500 for services that include updating the job description, identifying and reference checking of three to five candidates and assisting the board with interviews.

’s contract with Leadership Associates has a total potential cost of $21,500, according to a copy of the contract read by Patch.

The search for a superintendent began in early May after Harrigan announced his resignation in . According to an automated email reply, Harrigan is no longer at his post with Newark Unified.

The email reply reads, "Superintendent Harrigan has completed his services to Newark Unified School District and is transitioning to his new appointment."

Harrigan earlier announced he had accepted a superintendent position with Oak Grove Union School District in Sonoma County.

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