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6 candidates chosen from 17 for new Ida school chief

IDA, Mich. - Ida school officials are feeling that their next superintendent is within reach.

The Board of Education last week picked six finalists in the search to replace retiring Superintendent Marv Dick.

Pared from the initial list of 17 applicants and asked to interview with the school board were:

•Craig Artist, superintendent of West Branch Community Schools, West Branch, Iowa.

•Richard Carsten, principal of Genesee Junior/Senior High School in the 900-student Genesee School District in Genesee County, Michigan.

•Karl Heidrich, principal at Stockbridge Community Schools, Stockbridge, Mich.

•William Kearney, principal at Johannesburg-Lewiston High School, Johannesburg, Mich.

•Ryle Kiser, principal at Reese High School, Reese, Mich.

•Michael Mrozinski, principal at Capac High School, Capac, Mich. He withdrew his application after the selection was made.

Betsy Taylor, an assistant superintendent with the Monroe County Intermediate School District, which is assisting Ida in the job hunt, said Mr. Mrozinski didn't explain why he withdrew from the selection process.

Mr. Dick, who has been employed in the district for 41 years, plans to retire June 30.

Interviews with the candidates will start at 6 p.m. Feb. 18, when Mr. Heidrich and Mr. Kearney will meet board members. Mr. Carsten is slated at 6 p.m. Feb. 19, and Mr. Artist and Mr. Kiser will be screened at 1 p.m. Feb. 20.

Ms. Taylor said each finalist will have up to 90 minutes to answer questions from the seven-member board as well as questions from citizens.

Board members reached a consensus on the questions to be asked after they selected the finalists. Ms. Taylor said the questions touch on issues ranging from school finances and budgeting and labor relations to school curriculum and relations between the superintendent and board members.

After the interviews, the board plans to pare the list to at least two finalists and slate second interviews with them in the first two weeks of March. Ms. Taylor said a job offer likely will be made in April with plans for the new superintendent to be at work on July 1, when the new fiscal year starts. "We are right on schedule," she said.

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