Washington County Public Schools announces next superintendent


With a break up vote Wednesday afternoon, the Washington County Board of Schooling authorised David T. Sovine as the faculty system’s up coming superintendent.

Sovine has been superintendent of Frederick County Public Educational facilities in nearby Virginia for 11 a long time. His retirement from the Frederick County situation, powerful at the conclude of June 30, was announced all through that university board’s assembly on Tuesday night.

The seven-member Washington County faculty board the two appointed Sovine superintendent and approved his 4-calendar year agreement with a 4-2 vote all through a meeting with about 40 people in the viewers.

Board President Melissa Williams, Vice President Stan Stouffer and associates Pieter Bickford and Linda Murray permitted the appointment and agreement. Voting against had been associates Darrell Evans and Mike Guessford. Board member April Zentmeyer abstained.

Sovine, 54, will succeed Boyd Michael, who is retiring after serving the faculty system for 43 several years, extra than the previous five as superintendent. Michael’s very last day is June 30.

Sovine instructed the board he was enthusiastic and honored to be the next superintendent.

“I am a relational chief. … I think in a collaborative partnership with the internal and exterior community,” Sovine informed the board after the vote. He commented on the faculty system’s “normal of excellence” being a level of satisfaction in the local community.

Sovine will take over as superintendent on July 1 for a college process that is more substantial than the just one he’s been helming in Northern Virginia.

Washington County Public Universities has an approximated 22,000 college students and 3,500 personnel.

The Frederick County method experienced 13,919 pupils and the equal of 2,376 entire-time workforce, in accordance to its web page.

A copy of Sovine’s agreement was not straight away obtainable. It is for the 4-12 months phrase July 1 via June 30, 2026.

Williams and Stouffer explained immediately after the meeting that Sovine’s foundation income will be $236,000. The agreement is equivalent to Michael’s deal, which delivers contributions for retirement, Williams reported.

Michael’s recent wage is $225,354, which include a elevate that went into influence last July.

Williams reported soon after the assembly that she was impressed by “so considerably” about Sovine, together with that he had an entry program.

That prepare, Stouffer explained, contains how to carry on by assembly with staff members and stakeholders in the neighborhood.

Sovine advised The Herald-Mail he will start off a “listening tour in which I will have interaction with important stakeholders, both equally internally and externally, to listen to what is valued about Washington County Public Universities and also recognize, potentially, some possibilities for improvement.”

Williams said Sovine’s “philosophy is learners initially as effectively and that’s as it must be.”

“I just believe he’s going to work really hard for us and do a good career,” Stouffer explained.

Williams claimed there are heading to be folks who are satisfied with the superintendent range and some who will not be.

“I have no question they will appear to recognize him as the educational chief he is and he will be embraced by the group,” Williams mentioned.

David T. Sovine, right, who takes over as Washington County Public Schools superintendent on July 1, listens to Superintendent Boyd Michael on Wednesday afternoon after it was announced Sovine would be the next superintendent. Michael is retiring. His last day is June 30.

David T. Sovine, appropriate, who requires over as Washington County Community Educational facilities superintendent on July 1, listens to Superintendent Boyd Michael on Wednesday afternoon following it was declared Sovine would be the next superintendent. Michael is retiring. His previous day is June 30.

Why failed to three board users vote sure?

In describing his no vote, Guessford outlined considerations about the contract when an additional trainer or other employees could have been hired, that he felt rushed to choose a superintendent with a July 1 deadline, and that he struggled with a nationwide research that only created 5 candidates from within just a 50-mile radius. He reported he believed the university program, which experienced two interior candidates for the posture, “missed our mark on rising our possess.”

Guessford also explained that through an job interview, Sovine stated he was a rule follower but that he experienced picked not to follow a new Virginia get.

Requested to what Guessford was referring, Sovine referenced recently inaugurated Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s directive about making masks optional in educational facilities in early 2022.

At the time, Frederick County was dealing with a superior COVID-19 group changeover amount and regional health and fitness officers had been pleading not to make masks optional, Sovine stated. The area clinic was overcome and on the verge of not currently being equipped to supply standard providers.

Sovine explained a greater part of the college board supported empowering him, with the guidance of the faculty system’s wellbeing and basic safety team and the regional health and fitness section, to determine no matter whether to make masks optional. Masks ended up produced optional about two weeks later on when local COVID quantities enhanced.

Guessford stated he will often aid the will of the board and that Sovine “most likely will do a incredibly, very excellent occupation.”

Conveying his no vote, Evans famous the board only experienced two finalists and he struggled to feel there have been no interior candidates who ended up “worthy” of an job interview.

Evans also stated he felt rushed and that the contract was a “small little bit rich,” noting the college board has not been equipped to give lecturers the raise they’ve wanted in some time.

Evans claimed it was a “large crimson flag” when he acquired a few comments from stakeholders that they weren’t ready to question their possess questions throughout stakeholder team interviews with the two finalists.

Judy Sclair-Stein, a consultant with Nebraska recruitment organization McPherson & Jacobson LLC, claimed in a mobile phone job interview that each individual stakeholder team experienced a chief who solicited prospect inquiries from their team. The consultant then cleaned up the questions — “generating su
re they were grammatically proper, but not wordsmithing” — and printed copies for the job interview groups.

The marketing consultant did not obtain the submitted queries from just one of the stakeholder groups till the early morning of the first candidate’s team interviews, Sclair-Stein claimed. That certain team leader experienced an world wide web issue and experimented with to ship the queries to the specialist, but didn’t notice they hadn’t gone via, she stated. So Sclair-Stein claimed she wrote questions for that stakeholder group and had the copies all set for the start off of the initial working day of interviews.

Stakeholders were being not allowed to check with stick to-up thoughts simply because of restricted time with the candidates and also to retain the procedure objective and as steady as attainable so both equally candidates confronted the very same concerns, she reported.

Evans said he experienced absolutely nothing in opposition to Sovine and that his no vote mostly expressed his disappointment with the approach. He reported he hopes in 4 decades to be renewing Sovine’s contract.

Zentmeyer claimed she thinks establishing talent inside of the program is the ideal employing exercise and that is why she was against a countrywide look for for a superintendent.

She stated she was amazed with Sovine and when Sovine confided he walked and prayed at 4 a.m., “her vote was secured.” But there was a hiccup with a deal counteroffer.

“For me, it is not about the measure of the gentleman, but investing cash you don’t have,” she said.

About the break up vote, Sovine stated he respects the “will of the total board,” and seems to be ahead to working with the board and the community.

David T. Sovine

David T. Sovine

Who is David T. Sovine?

Sovine has reported he grew up in the small city of Hurricane, West Virginia, west of Charleston. His father was a meat cutter and shown a excellent function ethic, Sovine advised The Herald-Mail previously this month. His mother stayed at home and volunteered at church. His moms and dads taught him it is important to operate tough and give back to the community, he reported.

He said he was the first in his family to go to higher education. Sovine attended a occupation truthful at nearby Marshall College and was offered a teaching work in the Richmond suburb of Chesterfield County, Virginia.

In his to start with 12 months instructing he was acknowledged with the Sallie Mae Instructor Award for becoming a person of the leading 100 new teachers in the country, according to his biography at the Frederick County college technique. Sovine stated he was instructing health and actual physical schooling at an elementary school and coaching higher college soccer at the time.

He was named Virginia Department of Education’s superintendent of the yr for Area IV in 2018, in accordance to posted experiences.

Sovine has a health care provider of training from the College of Virginia. He also is an adjunct professor and a regional coordinator for instructional leadership at James Madison University.

Sovine acknowledged the aid of his wife, Kelly, who was at the Wednesday conference with him, as very well as some previous FCPS teachers who are now WCPS workforce and were being at the assembly.

Sovine has reported he and his wife have twin daughters, both of those of whom had been educated through a community faculty procedure and are now educators in distinctive Virginia school devices. One particular is an elementary school trainer and a single is an elementary university counselor.

The few plans to move to Washington County.

Commenting on Sovine’s introduced retirement from the community Virginia college process, Frederick County college board Vice Chairman Bradley Comstock said for the duration of a Tuesday night time board conference to Sovine, “Thank you for your assistance to this group. We are a superior area now for the reason that of you,” according to a YouTube video of the board meeting.

All through Sovine’s 11-12 months tenure as superintendent, the initiatives the Virginia college process concentrated on bundled early literacy, offering all college students with supports essential to triumph, and acquiring and applying a strategic system, in accordance to a FCPS university method information release.

“When I began my time as Superintendent, fifty percent of our elementary universities had been not fully accredited and ranked in the base 10 p.c of elementary educational facilities in the point out dependent on scholar accomplishment on the Benchmarks of Finding out (SOL) exams,” Sovine stated in the information launch. “We also experienced a center faculty that experienced not been totally accredited for a 10 years and was in the base five p.c of center universities in the condition primarily based on students’ efficiency on the SOL exams. As I get ready for my retirement, all of our faculties are completely accredited. That is a final result of the really hard operate and perseverance of our teachers, administrators and guidance staff members. Their do the job and motivation to ongoing improvement has created a favourable influence on our college students and schools.”

The research for the upcoming WCPS superintendent

The school board introduced on June 1 that Sovine and Theo L. Cramer had been finalists for the superintendency.

Cramer explained to The Herald-Mail recently that he retired as a Howard County (Md.) Public Universities local community superintendent past year.

More: Understand about finalists for Washington County Community Colleges superintendent career

McPherson & Jacobson, the recruitment firm the board hired, received 19 applications for the Washington County superintendent career.

Immediately after penned responses to queries and, afterwards, submitted videos from 9 candidates responding to presented questions, five candidates ended up advised to the school board. Three have been decided on for finalists’ interviews, but just one chose to withdraw.

A number of variations amid Maryland’s college superintendents

Michael is amongst a number of university superintendents in Maryland who are retiring or shifting on this 12 months.

Sclair-Stein claimed
there were being “well above” 800 superintendent openings throughout the nation this spring.

Amongst the superintendents in Maryland retiring is Wicomico County Community Colleges Superintendent Donna Hanlin, a previous affiliate superintendent with Washington County educational institutions who retires June 30 from the Reduce Japanese Shore faculty system. The Wicomico college board a short while ago appointed Micah Stauffer, who was elevated in that local community, as its up coming superintendent.

Far more: WCPS Superintendent Boyd Michael announces his retirement, successful July 1

This short article originally appeared on The Herald-Mail: David Sovine named Washington County Community Educational facilities superintendent



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