LETTERS: South Waltoners speak out

Published: Tuesday, August 26, 2014 at 05:44 PM.

  LETTER: 'Just vote no'

 

The superintendent selection process, a referendum item on the Aug. 26th Walton County ballot, was described by Jenny Dargavell (Daily News, August 12) as “a movement to remove politics from the job of superintendent.” Nothing could be further from the truth; there is no position that is more political than a government-appointed job.

In the case of Walton County ’s superintendent, it means a move from some 41,000 voters deciding who gets this extremely important job to a majority (3) of the five-person school board naming someone to the post. Expensive head hunting and recruiting, lobbying, jockeying and back room deals are the name of that game.

The appointment argument that the superintendent position should be searched for from among candidates with a higher education degree and experience in the field of education is a fallacious one. State Senator and Senate President Don Gaetz never would have made the cut in Okaloosa County . With zero background as an educator, he was twice elected and turned the Okaloosa school system from one of the worst in the state to the one of the best. That is the power of the people.

Consider that a school board position (elected) requires no more than a high school degree and county residence. It is somewhat incongruous that appointment pushers would have this elected body develop a superintendent’s job description and launch what could be an expensive and time consuming nationwide search to recruit and appoint a superintendent.

Recall that a nationwide search for our county administrator position was undertaken not so long ago. This resulted in contracts with three county administrators in four years, one contract that required a buy-out and a position that was ultimately filled by Larry Jones from our very own Walton County



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