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Hernando schools superintendent again fails to land New England job

BROOKSVILLE — Hernando schools boss Wayne Alexander is out of contention for another New England superintendent job.

The School Board in Brockton, Mass., narrowed its list of finalists from five to three on Monday night, cutting Alexander and another candidate, said vice chairman Richard Bath.

School Board members took a roll-call vote in a special meeting to narrow the field, Bath said.

Bath made the announcement Tuesday after notifying Alexander and the other finalist who was cut, Arthur Stellar, the superintendent in Taunton, Mass.

"He wished us well and we wished him well," Bath said of his phone call to Alexander.

Alexander has declined to comment on specifics of his job search and did so again Tuesday when asked whether he is still actively looking for a new post.

Alexander, whose contract with Hernando ends next June, has been hunting for New England jobs for about six months.

He had planned to stay in Hernando and move his new family here. But he now says that a child visitation dispute between his wife and her ex-husband has forced him to change those plans and move back to New England.

He has said he will stay through his contract or at least until a replacement is in place. The Hernando School Board hopes to have a successor named by February.

Alexander was one of two finalists for the top post in Westerly, R.I., but the School Board there picked the other candidate last week. He made it to semifinalist status in Framingham, Mass., back in January.

At least two board members have said Alexander has been less than up front with the board about his job search.

Pat Fagan and James Yant also say it's time to cut ties with Alexander now rather than have him finish his contract. They maintain that he shouldn't be making decisions that could affect the district in the long term, but a majority of the five-member board still supports him.

Deputy superintendent

Steve Knobl, principal of Gulf High School in Pasco County, has made no secret of his desire to be a superintendent someday. So when the Hernando County school district announced it would seek another round of applicants for its vacant assistant superintendent position, Knobl decided to go for it.

"It's a scenario that's intriguing," said Knobl, a 15-year veteran of the Pasco district, who took over the Gulf High job a year ago. "By no means does applying mean I'm going to get the job. … It is just something to explore."

Knobl, who ran Bayonet Point Middle School for two years before his assignment to Gulf High, is completing his doctorate in education in the fall.

Times staff writer Jeffrey S. Solochek contributed to this report. Tony Marrero can be reached at tmarrero@sptimes.com or (352) 848-1431.

Hernando schools superintendent again fails to land New England job 06/09/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, June 9, 2009 6:57pm]
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