APS Superintendent Search - 2021

The Andover School Committee is seeking a Superintendent of Schools to hold the position beginning July 1, 2021. On March 25th the preliminary screening committee announced two outstanding finalists:

Dr. Magda Parvey is currently Chief Academic Officer of Middletown Public Schools in Middletown, Connecticut. Prior to that, Dr. Parvey served as the Interim Superintendent of City School District of New Rochelle, New York; Chief Academic Officer in New Rochelle; and Assistant Superintendent for Instructional Services in North Carolina’s Chapel Hill-Carrboro City School District. As a lifelong educator with a career spanning over 25 years, she has served in additional leadership positions as a principal, assistant principal and teacher.

Please also view Dr. Parvey’s biography and resume.

Q & A Forum Feedback: Finalist Candidate Impression Form

Dr. Stephen Zadravec: is currently Superintendent of Portsmouth School Department in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Prior to that, Dr. Zadravec was an Assistant Superintendent in School Administrative Unit 39; and a middle school math teacher and curriculum coordinator at Amherst Middle School in Amherst, New Hampshire. As a lifelong educator with a career spanning over 30 years, he has served in additional leadership positions as an interim principal.

Please also view Dr. Zadravec’s biography and resume.

Q & A Forum Feedback: Finalist Candidate Impression Form

Latest Recordings: 

Chronology of Process:

In April, the finalist candidates will have opportunity to introduce themselves to Andover and share their individual strengths. We hope all in the school and town community will participate in this process and provide feedback prior to a final decision by the School Committee. A feedback form will be made available for this purpose.

Most immediately, we encourage you to submit questions for inclusion at the April 5th Q/A forum. Submitting questions ahead of time will allow us to de-duplicate and combine like-themes in order to cover as many areas as possible. We hope to have a broad range of stakeholders join in this process and submit questions using this online form. The form closes on April 2nd at 5:00 PM.

The tentative schedule of events for finalist candidates includes (specific times to be announced):

o  Televised and recorded Q/A forum with each candidate the evening of Monday, April 5th

o  Dr. Parvey site visit to Andover on Tuesday, April 6th

o  Dr. Zadravec site visit to Andover on Wednesday, April 7th

o  Televised and recorded interviews with each candidate by the school committee the
    evening of Thursday, April 8th

o  Deliberation and vote by school committee the evening of Monday, April 12th

Youtube Profile Picture

Profile of the Next Superintendent

Through a community-wide survey, 15 focus group meetings, and interviews with district leaders, the profile for the next Superintendent has been determined. Thank you to everyone who took the time to engage in this process. 

View the Superintendent Profile 

To finalize this profile, community feedback was discussed by the School Committee in a televised workshop on January 28th. The profile provides the basis for candidate selection criteria, job posting and other recruitment materials used by our executive search firm. The posting has been advertised in multiple print and online locations, through Ray and Associates’ extensive networks, and with their professional recruitment team. Candidates were asked to submit their applications to Ray & Associates by February 28, 2021. 

View the Superintendent Recruitment Flyer 

Preliminary Screening Committee

The School Committee established a preliminary screening committee to perform the following functions:

  • screen candidates identified by Ray and Associates for consideration, 
  • determine candidates to interview, conducting first round interviews, and 
  • determine finalist candidates to move on to the next step of consideration

The composition of preliminary screening committee, and process for soliciting and confirming membership were discussed and voted by the School Committee at their February 4th and March 4th public meetings. The 11-member preliminary screening committee is comprised of:

1 teacher, Ann McNamee, Screening Committee Chairperson
1 principal, Caitlin Brown
1 assistant superintendent, Sara Stetson
1 program coordinator, Steve Sanborn
1 administrative director, Steve Chinosi
1 facilities representative, Janet Nicosia
1 Town Manager, Andrew Flanagan
2 community members, Emily DiCesaro and Jayashree Mohandas
2 School Committee members, Paul Murphy and Shannon Scully

The hiring process is being lead by HR Director, Jess Porter in conjunction with the executive search firm, Ray & Associates.  By statute, the final hiring decision falls to the full school committee.  

In order to attract as many qualified candidates as possible, the preliminary screening committee conducted most of its activities in executive session, as allowed under purpose 8 of Massachusetts Open Meeting Law.  The names of candidates who have applied for the superintendent position will be held confidential, with only the names of finalists released to the public.

Topics taken up by the preliminary screening committee that fall outside of executive session purposes - such as election of committee Chairperson, deliberation around interview questions, and open meeting minutes approval - were held in open session. Recordings of these meetings are in the AndoverTV archive as a matter of practice:

  1. Video of open session meeting of the preliminary screening committee March 19, 2021
  2. Video of open session meeting of the preliminary screening committee March 20, 2021
  3. Video of open session meeting of the preliminary screening committee March 23, 2021
  4. Video of open session meeting of the preliminary screening committee March 30, 2021
  5. Video of Q & A Candidates Open Forum April 5, 2021

Continuing Timeline

January 2021
  • Ray & Associates distributed a survey to the community to focus on the desired qualities in the new superintendent.
  • 15 meetings held with various constituent groups
  •  School Committee held a workshop to finalize the profile for superintendent candidates.
February 2021
  • Identification and recruitment of candidates by Ray & Associates
  • Candidate applications collected and reviewed by Ray & Associates
March 2021
  • Sub-committee of the School Committee established for preliminary candidate screenings and initial interviews
  • Candidates selected by Ray & Associates for review by interview preliminary screening sub-committee (March 11)
  • Interviews of first round candidates (March 19 and March 20th)
  • Determination of finalist candidates by preliminary screening committee in executive session (March 23rd)
  • Announcement of finalist candidates (March 25th)
April 2021
  • Community Q/A forum with finalist candidates
  • Site visits by finalist candidates
  • Interviews of finalists by School Committee in open meeting
  • Additional community feedback
  • Superintendent selection by School Committee

Executive Search and Recruitment Assistance: 

In order to best engage the community in this effort and to identify a highly qualified and diverse candidate pool, in November 2020 the School Committee solicited proposals from qualified firms or individual consultants to provide Executive Search Consultant Services. Through that process, defined in M.G.L. Chapter 30B, the firm Ray and Associates was chosen to lead the search in conjunction with the School Committee.

Ray and Associates, Inc. is a professional organization that specializes in school executive leadership searches. The firm has been in the school executive search business since 1975 and has established a reputation for recruiting outstanding candidates that match the expectations of the Board and community. They have also been successful in recruiting women, minorities and non-traditional candidates for school districts. 

All of the consultants within the firm have years of experience in the school executive search field. More information on Ray and Associates can be found here