Search starts for new Clovis superintendent

By Ryan Lengerich

The search for a Clovis schools superintendent is officially under way.
Monday was the first day Clovis school officials accepted applications to replace former Superintendent Neil Nuttall.
The board will take applications through Feb. 28.
No applications were received on Monday, but Assistant Superintendent for Personnel Jim McDaniel said that’s not a concern.
“The people who vie for superintendent generally don’t do it in a mad rush,” he said. “People find out about it but then spend some time looking into it.”
McDaniel is in charge of spreading the word throughout the state, region and nation about the district’s vacancy. He began with the district’s Web site before sending notices to the New Mexico Coalition of School Administrators, the New Mexico School Board Association and various universities in the area.
On a popular education placement Web site, the description is posted and demands a person “capable of leading a staff and community in a continuous program of school improvement.”
Board member Lora Harlan, who has been through three superintendent selections, said the opening will likely be seen throughout the nation but applicants generally come from the Southwest.
“It would be easier for a person in a neighboring state to look at how the legislative process works as far as the schools are concerned,” Harlan said.
She said it is possible the district could get about 20 applicants.
The district will hold a school board election Feb. 1 for two districts. District 2 position incumbent Lola Bryant is being challenged by Rube Render. In District 1, five candidates will vie for the position held by Ken Merritt, who is not seeking re-election after 16 years.
Harlan said the school board election might play a factor in who applies for the position.
“They will kind of wait until the election and see what the dynamic of the board is,” she said.
Nuttall left Clovis after seven years to become president at a Missouri junior college. The board selected long-time educator G.C. Ross as interim superintendent in November. He will serve through June 30.
The board will announce five finalists for the permanent position in March and make the selection in June.