Stein Selected for Wayland Superintendent Position
The committee agreed to enter into contract negotiations with Newton's Deputy Superintendent.
Wayland School Committee members Monday night voted 4-1 in support of entering into contract negotiations with Newton's Deputy Superintendent Dr. Paul Stein to become Wayland’s next superintendent of schools.
Stein was tapped in late December as one of three finalists for the top position with Wayland schools.
During the past two weeks all three finalists, Stein, Dr. Anne Wilson and Dr. Jonathan Landman, each spent a day in Wayland visiting schools and meeting with individuals and groups before being interviewed publicly by members of the School Committee.
Monday night marked the first time committee members gathered to discuss their impressions of the candidates following the finalists’ days in town. The lengthy interview and vetting process, committee members agreed, revealed that all three candidates possess skills that could make them successful in Wayland.
In the end, however, Stein’s diverse experience and array of skills convinced committee members to take the next step in the process with him.
“I think that Dr. Stein would be an excellent fit,” said committee member Beth Butler. “I think that the town would be very proud to have him as a superintendent.”
Richard Warren, senior consultant with Future Management Systems, a firm that conducts leadership and executive searches and has assisted during the search process, recapped the leadership profile School Committee members previously established as their rubric for the ideal candidate.
Warren reminded the committee that honesty, integrity and accessibility in a person who is easily approachable, a good listener, and a strong educational leader were some of the components of their model candidate.
On the way to the vote, committee members took turns noting the strengths of each candidate as well as expressing any concerns they had about each.
Wilson, committee members said, was extremely thoughtful and they universally praised her as a warm, personable, skilled and student-focused education professional. There were concerns, however, that her administrative experience was not as extensive as that of the other candidates.
Likewise, committee members praised Landman’s enthusiasm and focus on students and teachers. They found him to be articulate and well-read with a clear desire to proactively seek ways to improve Wayland schools.
Committee member Shawn Kinney, the one vote against continuing the process with Stein, noted that Landman was his first choice as Wayland’s next superintendent.
“I feel Dr. Landman is the best candidate based upon his enthusiasm [and] his knowledge of instructional science,” Kinney said. “He is a person that wants a challenge. He wants to pick up and move things forward.”
Kinney said he was a somewhat concerned with Stein’s coming to the much-smaller Wayland school system from the large Newton school district. Even so, Kinney said he found Stein to be a well-qualified and exceptional candidate who is “very interesting” and “extremely knowledgeable” and whom he would support fully should Stein be the committee’s leading candidate.
Other committee members said they appreciated Stein’s thoughtful and reflective approach to questions as well as his emphasis on cultivating great teachers.
“We want continuity and careful change for the good,” said Malcom Astley. “I see [Stein] being able to bring that about.”
Contract negotiations are the next step toward hiring Wayland’s next superintendent, and the School Committee began that process Monday night with an executive session to discuss the contract terms.