The Covington County School District Board of Education has cut 10 from the list of candidates for the next superintendent, going from 17 to seven.
The board met in executive session at the school district’s central office on Thursday, July 18, 2019.

Although the meeting was behind closed doors, Board President Lynn Smith has previously committed to being as transparent as possible through the process. He wasn’t able to provide personal information or many details, but did say the seven candidates will be interviewed between August 1 and August 15.

“We’re in the process over the next week of setting up interviews,” Smith said. “There could be second interviews, but we hope to make an offer to a candidate by August 31.”

The Covington County School District Board contracted with the Mississippi School Boards Association (MSBA) to assist in the search for the first appointed superintendent of the Covington County School District.

The vacancy announcement was sent to the National School Boards Association, which posted it on their website. All inquiries to MSBA regarding the position were answered, and a brochure outlining the procedures to apply for the position was sent to each. Telephone and email responses were made to those who had been recommended or who had expressed an interest in the position.

Among the original applicants were four superintendents, one assistant superintendent, three directors, two coordinators, five principals, one assistant principal, and one teacher. Eight of the applicants have a doctorate degree. Ten of those applicants are male, and seven of the applicants are female. Fourteen of the applicants are from Mississippi, two are from Alabama, and one is from Tennessee.

Each application was reviewed, analyzed, and evaluated according to the established criteria, and references were checked.

Reference letters for each applicant were received. Telephone calls and personal contacts were made to gain additional information about each applicant. A determination was also made as to whether each applicant met the qualifications to be a superintendent in Mississippi as defined in the Mississippi Code of 1972, 37-9-13, which went into effect on July 1, 2017 or met the Mississippi Department of Education Alternative Qualifications for Prospective District Superintendents of Education.