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Birmingham Board Education President Wardine Alexander explains the selection process for BCS superintendent


Posted April 12, 2017
In the fall of 2016, the Birmingham Board of Education agreed to hire the Alabama Association of School Boards to conduct the district’s search for its next superintendent. The district’s search committee gave the AASB a list of criteria it wanted its next superintendent to have. The AASB also interviewed each board on the criteria and what each board member wanted to see in the qualities of a superintendent.


The criteria and other requirements were posted to the district’s website. Applications for superintendent closed on March 17, 2017.  The AASB said that 61 people started the application process and 47 completed the application process. From that pool of 47 completed applications, the AASB reviewed the applicants and selected those individuals best fitting the criteria released by the school board.


In keeping with its agreement with the school board, AASB reviewed the complete pool of candidates and returned the names of the top five candidates, based on the criteria it received for the job.  


On Tuesday,  April 11, 2017,  the AASB  presented names of five candidates it deemed best fit the qualifications set forth for Birmingham City Schools’ next superintendent.  In keeping with the confidentiality of the application process, AASB said that the names of the other candidates would not be released. 


The selection process that the AASB used in selecting the five candidates for Birmingham City Schools is the same standard, selection process that is used by school boards across the country. As board members, we did not know the identity of any of the applicants. Nor, did we know how many applications were submitted by employees working for Birmingham City Schools or how many applications were submitted by those not connected to our school system.


There are plans in place to continue with the selection process, which a majority of the school board agreed upon in the fall of 2016. To halt this process now and start over, would not give the five candidates AASB has already selected an opportunity to continue with a process that was previously established. 


We value all of our stakeholders and the concerns they have made about the selection process and the five candidates. We will continue to seek the public’s  input as part of the selection process. On Wednesday,  April 19, the five candidates will be interviewed at the Central office. These interviews, which will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., will be open to the public and livestreamed on the district website


When the last interview ends on April 19,  a survey will go live on the district website. Citizens are encouraged to use the survey to provide  feedback on each of the five candidates. The surveys will remain accessible on the district website through Friday, April 21 at 12 p.m.  

- Wardine Alexander 
Birmingham Board of Education President