Assistant Superintendent Stewart McDonald has been selected as the new superintendent of the Kodiak Island Borough School District. The school board made the decision after a two-hour executive session last night (Monday). KMXT’s Casey Kelly has more.
Stewart McDonald says he never thought he’d be a superintendent at this point in his career. When he took the assistant superintendent job a year ago, McDonald, who is 43, figured Larry LeDoux would be the superintendent of Kodiak schools for years to come. That all changed late last month when LeDoux took the position of Education Commissioner in Governor Sarah Palin’s cabinet. But McDonald says he doesn’t think of himself as replacing LeDoux so much as continuing the work that they’ve been doing together.
(McDonald 1 :13s “…to just continue a path.”)
McDonald first worked for the Kodiak Island Borough School District in 1992 as a special education teacher at Kodiak High School. In 1995 he left for a teaching job at Soldotna Middle School, where he stayed for seven years. When he moved back to Kodiak he worked as a special education teacher at East Elementary School before taking a job in the central office as director of assessment and federal programs. Last year he was hired as assistant superintendent.
McDonald says starting his career as a special education teacher taught him to consider the needs of individual students, and adapt to them.
(McDonald 2 :23s “…be doing as superintendent.”)
School board president Betty Odell says McDonald was the only applicant from an internal search that the board did following the news of LeDoux’s impending departure. Odell says the school board likes the direction that the district is heading in, and McDonald has been a big part of that.
(Odell 1 :25s “…to move in that direction.”)
Odell says the board discussed hiring McDonald on an interim basis and doing a nationwide search, but ultimately it felt he was the right person for the job. She says he will be offered a three-year contract–the maximum a superintendent can receive under Alaska law.
(Odell 2 :11s “…think things get any better.”)
McDonald and the school board are still working out the terms and conditions of an agreement, although Odell says a deal could be done as soon as next week.
LeDoux will continue to serve as superintendent through July 1st when his job as Education Commissioner begins.
I’m Casey Kelly.