By Charles Sercombe
The search for a new public school superintendent is ramping up next week.
Some 28 educators applied for the job, but the school board whittled that list down to six candidates to interview.
Interviews begin next Wednesday, April 24, and run through Friday, April 26.
The public is allowed to sit in on the interviews, which will be held at the Hamtramck Public Schools Administration Building at 3201 Roosevelt, located next to Keyworth Stadium.
Current Superintendent Tom Niczay is retiring after 40 years in education, the last 10 of which as superintendent.
Niczay became superintendent during a financial crisis when the district was millions of dollars in debt. He and his administration managed to climb out of it, and the district now has a $9.8 million budget surplus.
Niczay’s team also grew the district’s student population back up and now boast of having over 3,000 students.
The district had seen a dramatic drop in students because of a dozen or so charter schools that popped up in the city and right outside in Detroit.
The district grew to the point that a couple of years ago it had to purchase a former charter school building on Hanley.
Niczay’s last day is June 31 of this year.
According to a press release issued by the district, the following candidates, which includes one current administrator, will be interviewed:
• Wednesday, April 24 at 6:30 p.m.: Dr. Youssef Mosallam, Executive Director of Community Partnerships, College & Career Readiness Achievement, Dearborn Public Schools
• Wednesday, April 24 at 8:10 p.m.: Jaleelah Ahmed, English Language Development Director, Hamtramck Public Schools
• Thursday, April 25 at 6 p.m.: James Baker, Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources, Lakeview School District
• Thursday, April 25 at 7:40 p.m.: Yvonne Lewis, Instruction & Curriculum Specialist, Harper Woods School District
• Friday, April 26 at 5 p.m.: Dr. Richard Klee, Director of Curriculum & Instruction, Crestwood School District
• Friday, April 26 at 6:40 p.m.: Dr. Jamii Hitchcock, Director of Character Education, Diversity & Equity, Birmingham Public Schools
A second round of interviews will be held starting April 29 for candidates who make the cut. The school board is expected to make a decision on who to hire during the week of May 13.
The school board could also decide to pass on all of the candidates and start a new search.
April 19, 2019