School District Seeks Input During New Superintendent Search

On January 19th, 2017, Jose Banda announced his resignation as Superintendent of the Sacramento City Unified School District (SCUSD) in June of this year.

A town hall meeting was conducted at John F. Kennedy High School on Wednesday, March 1st, where parents and students were encouraged to give their input on what kind of superintendent they would like to see replace Banda.

Many of the concerns revolved around a lack of community outreach and involvement on the part of the superintendent.

“I would like to see the superintendent develop a […] strategic plan for broader and [more] insightful community involvement,” said community member Caroline Cabias.

This concern was stressed throughout the meeting by participating students and parents.

“I’ve been a student of this district for 12 years now and I only recall seeing the superintendent once,” said SCUSD student Christopher Wong. “I’d like to see a stronger connection between the students and the district.”

“I think there needs to be a better connection between the parents and the district,” said an attending parent.

Concerns were also expressed over the lack of community involvement in the process of selecting the superintendent. The possibility of creating a community panel to interview candidates for the replacement superintendent was raised, to which Special Assistant to the Board Nathaniel Browning responded:

“It’s confidentiality purposes. We cannot have three potential, five potential superintendents come because we’re only going to end up hiring one. That means others are going to have to go back to their districts.”

“You can have a written agreement that talks about ensuring confidentiality,” replied an attendant. “Our message to you, and to the board, and some of the staff is that we want to see community stakeholder involvement in the selection process.”

The comments and concerns of meeting attendants were written down as they were raised at the meeting. These notes are posted on the SCUSD website, where notes from other town hall meetings are available as well.

The meetings following the John F. Kennedy town hall are as follows:

Rosemont High School – March 7th, 2017 – 6pm to 8pm

Will C. Wood Middle School – March 8th, 2017 – 6pm to 8pm

Luther Burbank High School – March 9th, 2017 – 6pm to 8pm

American Legion High School – March 14th, 2017 – 6pm to 8pm