Incoming Lafayette Parish Schools Superintendent Don Aguillard

One of the candidates for the Lafayette Parish schools superintendent job who was a finalist back in 2011 has applied for the job again.

St. Mary Parish Superintendent Don Aguillard confirmed that he submitted an application for the Lafayette position on Monday.

Aguillard became superintendent of St. Mary Parish schools in 2004 after more than 28 years with the Lafayette Parish School System as a teacher and as a school and central office administrator. St. Mary Parish School System received a B letter grade in the past three school years from the Louisiana Department of Education.

“At this point in my career, I’m interested in taking on that challenge of leading a school district of 30,000 students,” Aguillard said in a phone interview Tuesday.

“Two years ago, I moved from St. Mary Parish back to Lafayette Parish. Lafayette Parish is home for me. It looks like it’s a great opportunity to get back into the Lafayette Parish School System.”

Aguillard was selected as a finalist for the Lafayette job in 2011, but withdrew his name from consideration.

“I felt like I still had some work to do in St. Mary Parish, so I decided to pull my application,” he said .

The application deadline for the superintendent job is March 27.

The School Board plans to fill the position in May ahead of interim Superintendent Burnell LeJeune’s retirement this summer.

LeJeune was appointed interim superintendent in November following the then-school board’s 7-2 vote to terminate Pat Cooper from the job.

Aguillard holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree in curriculum and instruction from LSU; an educational specialist certificate in school administration; a Master of Education degree in secondary education and a Bachelor of Science degree in biology education, all from then-University of Southwestern Louisiana, which is now the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

He began his teaching carer at Acadiana High School in 1975 and in the Lafayette Parish School System held positions of assistant principal at Acadiana High, director of management information systems at the central office; principal of Carencro High and an area director of schools.

LeJeune said he has received only one certified piece of mail related to the superintendent search. He said submissions will remain unopened until the application period closes on March 27.

“Everything has been received certified mail, verified with secretaries and we will lock (it) up until the final day when we open it with the president and vice president,” LeJeune said.

LeJeune said the school system is handling the application process in this fashion on the advice of legal counsel. In the past, applications have been released in response to requests made under the state’s Public Records Act.

Follow Marsha Sills on Twitter, @Marsha_Sills.