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Peters Township School District Hosting Focus Groups for Superintendent Search

Your input is wanted. Here's how to get involved.

The Peters Township School District will host focus group meetings for the community "so that residents may share their experience and insight into the type of leader the district will need to successfully educate our students for the 21st Century," officials said.

The goals of the focus groups are to:

  • Identify the qualities needed in a superior school leader
  • Identify the strengths and skills essential for the next superintendent to demonstrate
  • Identify key issues facing the district in the next five years that the next superintendent will need to address and
  • Identify the obstacles to student achievement and the strategies the next superintendent will need to employ to overcome those obstacles.

Interested? Here are the dates:

Monday, March 11, 2013, Middle School Auditorium

  • 11 a.m.: PTA Leadership and Members
  • 6:30 p.m.: Community Leaders (township leaders, Character Counts, parks and recreation, civic leaders, clergy, League of Women Voters, education foundation, senior citizen groups, etc.)


Thursday, March 14, 2013, Middle School Auditorium

  • 5 p.m.: Booster groups, creative learning collaborative
  • 6:30 p.m.: General community


Friday, March 15, 2013, Middle School Auditorium

  • 8-10 a.m.: Open forum for anyone unable to attend a previous session
  • 2-4 p.m.: Open forum for anyone unable to attend a previous session

School officials said that if none of the dates are convenient, input may be sent via email at ptsdsuptsearch@cciu.org or by calling 484-237-5010.

"All input is considered valuable and will be used in the process of selecting the
next superintendent," school officials said.

Ted Taylor 4 February 27, 2013 at 12:53 PM
Now THIS is impressive. The taxpayers in PT actually get to be involved in this process. I applaud the efforts of The PTSD in this decision! :)
PA Mom February 27, 2013 at 01:51 PM
I am very pleased to see that our elected officials have chosen to involve all stakeholders and not just a select few. I agree with Ted and applaud PTSD for this decision.
Joseph February 27, 2013 at 05:22 PM
Why have school board if they are unable to make the decisions we elect them for?
Roger February 27, 2013 at 06:09 PM
The idea presented sounds like a very good one, as Ted and PA Mom suggest. But, Joseph raises a good point, one that I struggle with in these matters. Our form of government is one where we elect people to act on our behalf. We elect them so that John Q Public does not have to make decisions on all matters. When these proposals are advanced, I wonder how they dovetail with our republic form of government. I ask the same question about referendum votes. In a referendum, an elected body chooses to abrogate its choice to the vote of the citizens. In this case, the focus groups look to be primarily for certain groups. One could say that "all" groups are represented, therefore it is a good plan. But, each group has a special interest in the choice. While this sounds like a great idea, how does it work with a common complaint of "always appealing to special interests?" In looking at the make-up of the PTSD Board, many have been involved for a long time. What are they expecting to learn that has not already crossed their path? The same pattern is being followed in the City of Pittsburgh with regard to a new police chief. In the last versions of news, two special interest groups have come forward. requesting to address the Council, wanting their voice heard in the selection process. How is this not "special interest" appeal? I know many who read these pages are much better skilled in government than myself. Help us to reconcile these two positions.
Joseph February 28, 2013 at 02:03 AM
Focus groups are a great way to deflect blame for when things go wrong. The School Board has no guts. BUT, they do have the ability to jack up our taxes for ridiculous projects that only serve a few. Roger alluded to this in his comments.
PA Mom February 28, 2013 at 08:47 PM
Quite thought provoking and great points. The bottom line is that John Q Public does not make the decision on these matters. It takes is a majority vote of 5 school board members that ultimately makes the decision of who the next superintendent of PTSD will be. Five people, that we elected, determine the one person that will, in turn recommend to the school board, how to spend all the school tax dollars for the education of all children in this community. Five people really do have the ability to jack up our taxes for projects that only serve a few. No matter how many focus groups they have, it also does not mean that they will listen to any concerns expressed within those groups. Even with the unbiased third party collecting the input from these groups, it does not mean that school board members take those thoughts into consideration during the hiring process. Three current sitting board members have been through the superintendent hiring process before. Upon reflection they do not have a great track record for hiring good district leadership. Roger is right, focus groups are only representative of those folks that show up to participate, which could easily be dominated by special interest groups; but I am still pleased they have extended that opportunity to all community members that wish to have a voice. The board appears to be making an effort, but it is also an election year.

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