BAKER — With the Friday deadline looming, the Baker School Board has thus far received four applications for superintendent of schools, a position being vacated by outgoing Superintendent Ulysses Joseph, who announced his retirement March 31.
Two of the applicants are employees of the East Baton Rouge Parish School System: Associate Superintendent for Student Support Services Herman Brister and Executive Director of Curriculum and Instruction for K-12 Susan Deion Moore.
The other two applicants are from out of state: Arronza Major LaBatt, executive director to the deputy superintendent of schools in the Montgomery County, Maryland, public school system, and Victoria Bridges, director of federal programs for the Keller Independent School District in Keller, Texas. Earlier this year, Bridges applied for the position of East Baton Rouge Parish schools superintendent. She graduated from Southern University in 1977, according to her application for that position. Former Zachary Schools Superintendent Warren Drake was chosen to lead the East Baton Rouge Parish School System.
The Baker School Board will meet at 6 p.m. May 13 to narrow the field, board President Elaine Davis said.
That meeting will be open to the public; however, the process of selecting the finalist or finalists will be done by the board in a closed session, she said.
Davis was not clear about whether the board will select one or more finalists at the May 13 meeting.
The board expects to have a new superintendent in place by June 1. No interim superintendent will be appointed, she said.
The Baker School Board will hold another special meeting at 6 p.m. May 26 during which the public will be allowed to ask questions of the finalist or finalists.
All city of Baker School Board meetings are in the School Board Office board room at 14750 Plank Road, Baker.
The advertisement for the position appeared in The Advocate on April 5 and April 12 and can be found on the state Department of Education website .
Joseph announced his retirement the same day the school district’s maintenance supervisor, Emmit Whitfield, was arrested for the third time.
Whitfield is accused of stealing items worth $128,000 using the school system’s credit card, as well as $2,100 in fuel and a tree trimmer worth $450. Whitfield resigned in December.
Joseph, who will leave his position May 28, has said his early retirement is not related to Whitfield’s arrest, instead blaming a lack of support from the School Board. Joseph’s contract was not due to expire until December.
In other business Tuesday, the board voted unanimously to hold a public meeting on June 16 to adopt millage rates for 2015.