RPS Board Member says superintendent search ‘flawed’

Posted at 6:57 PM, Dec 10, 2013
and last updated 2013-12-10 18:57:48-05

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR)--After Richmond’s former school superintendent stepped down earlier this year, school board members promised to include the public throughout the entire search for her replacement.

“We want their input. We want them to participate,” School Board Chair, Jeff Bourne said during a summer interview.

Within the first few months, the school board kept that promise by holding meetings to get public input on who should be picked. Now, with just 16 days remaining, the board hasn't announced any plans to introduce the still unknown, final three candidates to the public.

CBS 6 questioned Bourne about this on Monday and he said board members are working harmoniously right now and the members will simply decide by Christmas.

“What we don't want to do is prematurely identify a candidate. That not only impedes our ability to get the right person, but, we also don't want to damage anybody's professional reputation or credibility,” Bourne said.

Yet several board members have reached out to CBS 6, by phone and email, and said they disagree with Bourne.

“I strongly feel the process has been flawed and we need to start over," Shonda Harris-Muhammed said.

She went added that she doesn't "trust this process."

"We need to apply for an extension with the state board of education," she said. "We are not ready to name a superintendent.”

Bourne told CBS 6 reporter Lorenzo Hall that he will touch base with all board members to figure out how to include the public in the final stage of this process.