Superintendent Search

The Shorewood School Board, in partnership with School Exec Connect (SEC), is in the final stages of the search process for a superintendent to be in place before the start of the 2023-24 school year. The Board is grateful to the community for all of their input so far, and looks forward to welcoming more community input through the superintendent candidate forums detailed below.

After completing six preliminary interviews, the Board has selected four finalists for the position of Shorewood School District Superintendent:
Tabia Jones has been the CEO and President of St. Joseph’s Academy since 2017. Prior to that, she was the Director of Curriculum and Instruction in the Shorewood School District for three years. Tabia earned her doctorate in Educational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Stephen Plank is currently the Superintendent of Burlington School District since 2019, and was previously a principal at Middleton High School. Stephen has a doctorate in Administrative Leadership from Loyola University, Chicago, Illinois. 
Kurt Schneider has been Superintendent of the Northern Suburban Special Education District #804, a consortium of 18 school districts in the northern Chicago suburbs for six years.  He was previously Assistant Superintendent for Learning (Pupil Services/Curriculum & Instruction) in District #181 in Hinsdale, Illinois for four years. Kurt earned his Ph.D. from UW-Madison. 
Quynh Trueblood served as the Superintendent of Kohler School District for eight years, and is currently a faculty lecturer/administrator at Edgewood College. Quynh has a Ph.D. in Leadership for the Advancement of Learning and Service from Cardinal Stritch University, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Finalist Interviews
These four finalists are being invited to a full-day District visit during the week of January 30 (see schedule below). During their time with us, each finalist will tour all four of our schools; interact with our building principals, teachers, administrative/support staff and student representatives from secondary schools; and participate in interviews with panelists who represent our staff, students, parents and community members. 
Staff/Community/Student Forum
An important part of the superintendent search process includes an opportunity for our school community to hear from each finalist candidate in person. A Staff/Community/Student Forum is scheduled for each of our four finalists on January 30th, 31st, February 1st and 2nd from 5:00 – 6:00 in the Shorewood High School, Library Media Center.  

The Forum is moderated by a consultant from the search firm School Exec Connect.  The moderator will introduce the candidate who will then provide a short presentation to help the audience get to know her or him.  The moderator will then follow with a series of questions drawn from the New Superintendent Profile; the same questions will be asked of each finalist to provide for an equitable experience for both the candidate and the audience. Feedback can be provided, using a smartphone or other device (laptops will be provided), to the School Board through a brief survey with a link or a QR code made available at the Forum.  
Feedback needs to be sent to the school board by 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, February 2.
Finalist Interview Schedule:
Monday, January 30, 2023 - Dr. Tabia Jones
Tuesday, January 31, 2023 - Dr. Quynh Trueblood
Wednesday, February 1, 2023 - Dr. Stephen Plank
Thursday, February 2, 2023 - Dr. Kurt Schneider
All individuals who interact with any of our finalists (including those who attend a forum) will be invited to complete a short online questionnaire afterwards. Responses to this questionnaire will help inform the School Board of our community’s thoughts and perspectives regarding each candidate. The link to the questionnaire will be provided at each forum.
With questions, contact Jack Linehan at t [email protected]
The Shorewood School District Superintendent Search Community Outreach Survey was deployed to all District families and staff on Thursday, November 10.  The survey was open to parents, caregivers, students, staff, residents, and District supporters through Wednesday, December 7.  Each survey participant was allowed to complete the survey one time. The survey input was then used to create a comprehensive profile (above) for seeking a candidate pool and evaluating applicants' credentials and experience.  
  • November 9: Superintendent Search survey opens (through December 7)
  • November 17 - December 6: Focus groups take place both virtually and in-person
  • December 13: SEC presents Superintendent Profile to the  Board to be approved
  • January 6: Application closes
  • January 10 (or later): SEC presents slate of six candidates to Board in closed session
  • Week of January 16: Preliminary interviews of six candidates take place in closed session 
  • Week of January 30: Finalist Candidate Day visits (four candidates)
  • Week of January 30: Staff/Community/Students Forums
  • On or before February 28: Board approves the contract and announces new superintendent
  • July 1, 2023: Superintendent officially begins with the District
There were ten focus groups total, running November 17 - December 6. Focus groups were by invitation only and limited to 15 attendees per group. **There will be additional community input opportunities when the finalist candidates have been announced.**
Focus Group Categories:

  • Parents/Caregivers & Volunteers  (one virtual group and one in-person group)  
  • School Leaders
  • Administrators & Cabinet Members
  • Faculty/Certified Staff (one virtual group and one in-person group)  
  • Board Members    
  • District & School Support Staff    
  • Students
  • Residents & Other
We have begun the search process for a permanent Superintendent to begin on July 1, 2023.  The School Board received several proposals from superintendent search firms, and after screening proposals, we interviewed three firms. Ultimately, we chose to partner with School Exec Connect; all Board members felt confident in their experience, and that their knowledge and expertise will make the search process an effective and efficient one.
Over the past week, the School Board met with the School Exec Connect team to work on three big tasks:
  • Draft a detailed timeline for the Superintendent search;
    • If all goes as planned, we will have a candidate selected by the end of February.
  • Craft a survey for our school community; 
    • This confidential and anonymous survey will open on November 10 and close December 7.  This is your opportunity to offer input; please take the survey and encourage others to do so.
  • Schedule multiple focus groups to gather input from many District stakeholders.
    • School Exec Connect will be organizing focus groups representing staff, families/caregivers, high school and middle school students, residents, volunteers, and local Village business and government.  

Participation in focus groups is limited and by invitation, but the survey is open to everyone.  School Exec Connect will use both survey and focus group input to create a comprehensive profile to be used in seeking a candidate pool and evaluating applicants' credentials and experience.  
More information about the interview process-including community/caregiver forums with finalists-will be shared at a later date.   A link on our Shorewood School District website will offer information about the progress of the search process.