Florida Board of Education extends commissioner search
In a brief conference call Tuesday, the Florida Board of Education moved the application deadline for education commissioner hopefuls from Sept. 27 to Nov. 30, setting Dec. 12 as the tentative date to select the state's new top education official.
Board members made clear that the selection date is not set in stone, just in case they can't get anyone they like by that time. "We're not going to lower our standards," chairman Gary Chartrand said.
Board vice chairman Roberto Martinez told the Gradebook after the meeting that moving back the application deadline seemed necessary at this point. "You've seen the names submitted," he said. "I don't see any names on that list that rise to the very high standard I am looking for."
He suggested that by moving the deadline to after the presidential election, many key education executives who might be considered for federal or state posts in other places will know whether they are available to apply. "It is prudent to wait," he said.
Board member Sally Bradshaw shared his view, adding that the short initial time frame didn't give many qualified candidates from out-of-state much time to prepare for a possible move if they were interested. "This post is too important to rush through the process," Bradshaw told the Gradebook.
The board is seeking a new commissioner after Gerard Robinson's abrupt resignation one year into his tenure.