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Superintendent Search Process for School Boards

Board Centered, Superintendent Friendly, and Data Driven.

Choosing a new superintendent is one of the most important tasks you will face as a school board. The WASB Search Services is designed to make this a positive and effective experience to help you choose the right person to lead your district. The WASB Search Services is designed to make hiring a superintendent a positive learning experience to help you better serve your district. We offer maximum flexibility to the board and assure total board control in the decision-making process.

Search Services consultants are equipped to help you from start to finish with a customized process. As a part of your membership organization, the consultants offer transition services that will help the right hire and the board quickly begin their journey together. The consultants can also connect you with the full range of WASB support services – from policy assistance to legal services and board development.

The WASB has worked with many school districts, both small and large, in Wisconsin.

List of districts/CESAs served by the WASB Search Services since 2016-17

Alma Area
Belmont Community
Boyceville Community
Brighton #1
Burlington Area
Cadott Community
Central/Westosha UHS

Geneva Joint 4
Howards Grove
Little Chute
Oconomowoc Area
Pardeeville Area
Pecatonica Area

Prairie du Chien
Prairie Farm
Randall Cons. Joint 1
South Milwaukee
Southern Door County
Spring Valley
Twin Lakes No. 4
Walworth Joint 1
West Salem
Westby Area
Wisconsin Heights

Are you a board member seeking a superintendent?

Operating Principles

When you select the WASB, you are selecting a trusted partner with whom you, your board and superintendent will have a long-term relationship. The WASB stands ready to be your partner, during the search process and beyond. Our consultants are experienced educational leaders who recognize that each search is the beginning of a journey. The WASB search consultants are equipped to facilitate a customized process during which they provide information and options to the board which makes the final decisions. At the heart of the WASB search process is a series of focus groups with the board, school staff, and community members. The data generated from these meetings will be used to develop each aspect of your search – from the vacancy announcement to the application essays and the questions you use in your interviews. Every application received by the WASB on the district’s behalf is provided to the district.

Request a Proposal

Is your district preparing to make the critical decision of selecting your next superintendent? Please contact Sally Sweitzer to request a proposal. A consultant will then set up a meeting with the board to determine how the WASB Search Services can meet the needs of your district.

National Affiliation of Superintendent Searchers (NASS)

The WASB is an active member of the National Affiliation of Superintendent Searchers.

The Search Process

We do our work with you—not just for you. The first planning meeting involves determining the extent and the type of community and student involvement in the process, budget and schedule of activities, existing board policy, and commitments of individual board members. A subsequent meeting entails choosing five or six candidates for the first interviews and reviewing interview questions and procedures.
Superintendent Profile
The consultant assists the board in arriving at the profile of the desired person based on information from focus groups and the school board.
The WASB advertises open positions on more than 30 statewide, regional and national websites. We also notify the WASB applicant pool. Individuals who are interested in the positions are encouraged to apply.

We’ll work with you to develop questions and thoroughly prepare for the interviews. You’ll receive a detailed Resource Guide, an orientation on effective interview techniques and format, and a review of the appropriate laws. Two or three finalists and an alternate will be chosen. The school board and the consultant plan the second round of interviews including who will be involved and the day’s schedule. There may be feedback to the board from those participating in the process. The board prioritizes their choices.

The school board or its designee negotiates a contract with the final candidate.
The New Superintendent
The WASB can assist the district with developing press releases and making introductions to the staff and community to help establish strong relationships from the start. The consultants offer transition services that will help the right hire and the board quickly begin their journey together. Additionally, we offer assistance in clarifying expectations and enhancing communication between you and your new superintendent from day one.
Search Costs

The WASB Search Services is a contracted service. Professional services are offered at an hourly rate plus expenses for travel, mileage, meals, and lodging, if necessary. Additional costs include advertising, postage, legal counsel, finalists’ travel expenses, and the site visit. A WASB Search Services cost typically falls in the $8,000-15,000 range which includes expenses; however, the total service costs are determined by the Search Services design and scope which is locally determined, as well as on-site consultant time. If a board elects to do portions of a search virtually, costs can be reduced in most cases. The WASB works with the board to design a search that meets the needs of the district.

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Read what others are saying

about Search Services:

Using the WASB Search Services served our School Board in the exact way we’d hoped. It helped our board clarify what we were looking for and then streamlined our search. I can’t imagine being anywhere near as successful without them.

Board Member, Pecatonica Area School District

The WASB team of professionals provided not only the skeletal structure of what was needed but also provided the necessary individual attention that was specific to our school district alone. It was the individual attention to our details that made this process so successful…thank you WASB!

Board Member, School District of Mondovi

The WASB provided our district with a knowledgeable, detail oriented, experienced, and personable advisor who answered our questions patiently and understood our local needs in this selection process.

Board Member, School District of Jefferson

I would definitely recommend using the WASB Search Services. They were able to seamlessly guide us through the process by keeping us on track and providing an unbiased view when needed, were extremely professional, and our questions and concerns were answered in a very timely manner. They had access to information on candidates that we may never have known. This was one of the most important if not the most important decision made by a school board. I couldn’t imagine trying to do this as a board on our own.

Board Member, Abbotsford School District

The WASB took an overwhelming and daunting recruitment job and made it simple, efficient, and easy. We had many high quality candidates to choose from and without the WASB’s work, we know our recruitment would have taken longer and would not have resulted in a great selection and final hire.

Board Member, Pecatonica Area School District

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