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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Hernando schools chief interviews for R.I. post

BROOKSVILLE -- Hernando schools superintendent Wayne Alexander may already be one step closer to a job in Westerly, R.I. But if so, the public doesn't know it yet.

The School Board in the coastal New England community interviewed Alexander behind closed doors for about an hour Wednesday night. Later, the board went back into executive session to discuss which of two finalists -- if not both -- warrant the next step in the process: a background check and a close look at the candidate's district. That could include a visit to the finalist's current district.

Board members are not expected to announce which finalist they like, a board member said after the meeting. Instead, the board's next announcement will likely be which candidate it has selected for the post.

The board will meet in another executive session Wednesday and could make an announcement after that. The goal, board members have said, is to announce their selection by June 3.

Also in the running for the Westerly post is Steven Welford, the superintendent in Burrillville, R.I., about 20 miles from Providence. Welford had his interview earlier this month.

Alexander didn't immediately return a call for comment Thursday.

He is also a finalist for the superintendent's post in Brockton, Mass. He has already interviewed there, and an announcement for that district's pick is expected later this month.

Alexander had said that he planned to stay in Hernando and move his new family here. But he maintains that a child visitation dispute between his wife and her ex-husband has forced him to change those plans and look for jobs in New England.

He has angered two Hernando School Board members who say he has been less than up front about his job search.

The Westerly school district comprises seven schools — five elementary schools, a middle school and a high school — and about 3,400 students. The salary range for the job is $115,000 to $137,000.

-- Tony Marrero, Times Staff Writer, and Emily Dupuis, Times Correspondent

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 10:24am]


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