By Amanda Wyatt
With only nine weeks to go before Interim Athletic Director J. Wayne Shierant retires from his post, the Sag Harbor School District has begun the search for a permanent, full time Athletic Director.
At its October 15 meeting, the Sag Harbor Board of Education informally approved a job description for the new Director of Athletics, Health, Nutrition, Wellness, and Personnel, which was developed by Interim Superintendent Dr. Carl Bonuso.
Both the description and a memo to potential applicants from the superintendent have been posted to the school’s website. According to Dr. Bonuso, the position will also be sent to several list serves for Section XI and county athletic associations.
“Whether it’s an in-house person or somebody from the outside, we want to make sure that word gets out so that we have as large and as good a population of people interviewing for the position as possible,” he said.
A large portion of discussion at Monday’s meeting centered on the decision to make the position full-time rather than part time. While a couple of community members brought up the issue of the cost of hiring a full-time athletic director — a figure that has not been determined — the BOE said that it was necessary for the district.
Dr. Bonuso said creating a part-time position would limit the pool of potential candidates, maintaining that a full-time job would be much more attractive to applicants.
“When someone has a part-time position, generally it’s not long-term,” agreed board vice president Chris Tice. “You want someone who’s committed and long-term.”
“It’s time for us to say that there is a need, we’ve increased our teams, we’ve increased our fields, and [members of our athletic staff] have the right to have the right person running that ship for us,” said board member Susan Kinsella.
And as fellow member Ed Drohan added, not having a strong athletic director was “like a ship without a rudder.”
Currently, the new athletic director position is described as a 12-month, full time, tenure-track administrative position. Qualifications for the position include a master’s degree in education or administration and “successful experience in administration,” among other requirements.
The job responsibilities are extensive, ranging from the supervision and evaluation of teachers and coaches and others in the department to the “interpretation” of health, physical education, wellness and recreation programs.
In addition to the typical duties of an athletic director, the position also entails personnel management. The job description lists recordkeeping, recruitment, preparing reports and other tasks as required duties.
According to the tentative timeline listed on the memo, applications are due by Friday, November 9. On November 13 and 14, applications will be screened, and on November 16 or November 20, the first round of interviews will take place. The second round of interviews will be held on November 27.
Ideally, the memo says, the selected candidate will be recommended to the BOE on Monday, December 3.
Another topic of discussion at Monday’s Board of Education meeting was transportation. The BOE approved several transfers from the 2012-2013 budget, reallocating funds due to the passage of the previous bus proposition. A total of $405,397.18 was transferred from contractual expenses to workers’ compensation, salaries, additional pay and fuel for the district’s self-operating transportation system.
Business administrator John O’Keefe also gave a presentation on the bus system, noting that Sag Harbor had added a route and doubled its fleet of district-run vehicles from last year.
At the meeting, the BOE said members plan to meet with representatives from School Leadership, LLC regarding the selection of a permanent superintendent. The special meeting, which will take place on October 24, will not be open to the public.
In other news, the BOE voted to approve the district’s Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) plan at a special meeting on October 10. As of press time, the plan had not been finalized, but it is expected to soon be made available to the public on the school’s website.