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The Wahluke School Board is excited to begin the work for finding the district's next Superintendent. Robert Eckert resigned in March of 2020. Junior High Principal, Andy Harlow, stepped into the position on an interim basis and has helped bridge the gap between Mr. Eckert's exit and this time.

The school board members decided to hold a nationwide search for candidates to fill the vacated position. They enlisted the services of William Jordan and Sergio Hernandez of Northwest Leadership Associates to lead the search.

On Thursday, February 5, 2021, during an Executive School Board Session, the board agreed to offer preliminary interviews to five applicants. Those interviews took place over two days - Tuesday, February 9, 2021, and Wednesday, February 10, 2021. The interviews were held at the Wahluke High School auditorium. Included in the interviews were five school board members, Mr. Jordan and Mr. Hernandez, and the candidates. A 24-member observation panel was identified and invited to attend the interview process through Zoom. The observation panel completed and submitted grades and comments through an electronic form for the school board members' reference.

The preliminary interviews were open to the public via Zoom Webinar. An archive of those originally streamed dates, times, and links can be accessed here.

Following the interviews, the School Board meet in an executive session to determine the three finalist candidates.

The Wahluke School District Board of Directors will be conducting final candidate interviews with the three finalist candidates for the open Superintendent of School position on Tuesday, February 16, Wednesday, February 17, and Thursday, February 18. All candidates will be on campus on their defined interview day.

Opportunities to meet each candidate will be held via Zoom and will be open to the public. Dates, times, and links can be located in the column to the right. The Wahluke School Board invited the following applicants to interview for the superintendent position:

Mr. Ed Murray – Tuesday, February 16

Mr. Murray is currently the Director of Personalized Learning and Public Relations in the Laurens County School District 55 in Laurens, South Carolina. Mr. Murray has been in the Laurens School District since 2014 and served as an Assistant Principal and Athletic Director and as Director of Administration/Chief of Staff. Mr. Murray previously served as an assistant principal and teacher in North, South Carolina, and Gault, California. Before entering education, Mr. Murray served in the Navy as a Nuclear engineer. Mr. Murry received his BA degree from California State University, Sacramento, two Master’s Degrees, one from National University and one from the University of Texas Arlington, and is finishing his Doctoral work at Clemson University.

Andy Harlow – Wednesday, February 17

Mr. Andy Harlow is the current Interim Superintendent of the Wahluke School District. Previously, Mr. Harlow has served as principal at Wahluke Junior High School since 2012. Mr. Harlow has also been a teacher and a coach at Morris Schott Middle School and Wahluke Junior High in the Wahluke School District. Mr. Harlow received his BA from Central Washington University and his Master’s Degree from Grand Canyon University.

Kelly Thorson – Thursday, February 18

Mr. Thorson is currently the principal at Tieton Intermediate School in the Highland School District in Cowiche, Washington, and has been in that position since 2015. Previously, Mr. Thorson was principal and Vocational Director at Highland Junior/Senior High School and served as an assistant principal at Prosser High School, and was a teacher and coach in the Selah School District. Mr. Thorson received his BA at Central Washington University, his Master’s Degree from Heritage University, and his Superintendent Certification from Washington State University.

Official Press Release

Finalist Interview Schedule (February 16-18, 2021):
All times and links are for Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday

Time: 8:30 AM - 9:15 AM
Group: Review the day's schedule and a brief tour of the facilities
Host: Lorraine Jenne
Location: Superintendent's Office

Time: 9:15 AM - 10:15 AM
Group: Administration Team (AM Option)
Host: Lorraine Jenne
Zoom: Search email for link to "Meeting ID: 812 0867 2603"

Time: 10:15 AM - 11:15 AM
Group: Non-represented - District Support
Host: Craig Sabin
Zoom: Search email for link to "Meeting ID: 875 1717 4882"

Time: 11:15 AM - 12:00 (NOON)
Group: Student Representatives
Host: Maybeline Pantaleon
Zoom: Reach out to your principal for a Meeting ID

Time: 12:00 (NOON) - 12:45 PM
Topic: Lunch with Tracy Plouse (Director of Finance and Operations)
Host: Tracy Plouse

Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Group: Administration Team (PM Option)
Host: Seth Weeks
Zoom: Search email for link to "Meeting ID: 840 6455 6426"

Time: 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Group: Business Leaders/Elected Officials/Desert Aire
Host: Seth Weeks
Zoom: https://wahluke.zoom.us/j/84840601084?pwd=N2IxZTJxcWFFOEhkKzZSVXYwOXhzdz09
Passcode: 459160

Time: 3:15 PM - 4:30 PM
Group: Certificated & Classified Staff
Host: Jesse Chiprez
Zoom: Search email for link to "Meeting ID: 864 3065 2644"

Time: 4:30 PM - 6:00 PM
Topic: Executive Session with Board
Host: School Board
Location: Board Conference Room

Time: 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Group: Community (Interpreter)
Host: Lorraine Jenne
Zoom: https://wahluke.zoom.us/j/85156310100?pwd=M2dJb2s1NTh5K3h1RmRaUy9udjJXZz09
Passcode: 720429

Time: 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Topic: Executive Session with Board
Host: School Board
Location: Board Conference Room via Zoom. Link here.

Please email information@wahluke.net for more information or link details.