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School board moves toward superintendent decision

Mike Desmond/WBFO

The Buffalo school board says it's close to picking a new superintendent but making the choice isn't the only issue.

While the school system and the BTF have been locked in talks for months over how to evaluate teachers, board members are now trying to figure how to evaluate the new superintendent in an employment contract.

Executive Affairs Vice President Rosalyn Taylor says the evaluation criteria include district issues like the dismal high school graduation rate.

Board President Lou Petrucci says the choice won't be named until that person is selected and the employment contract is completed, including the pay and benefits.

He says that means the goal of having the new superintendent in place by July 1 might not be met.

"We want to make sure we do our due diligence and get the best candidate and have the best," Petrucci said.

 "Part of a lot of this is it's more than just the interviews. The interviews are an important part of this,  but the second part more importantly is the contract and the evaluation method. We want to make sure that we have a criterion by which we can gauge the success of this new person."

The two-leading candidates appear to be Interim Superintendent Amber Dixon and much-traveled educator Pamela Brown.

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.