In December of 2014, Dr. Rose Ellis retired as the superintendent of Mt Greylock Regional School District. Dr. Gordon Noseworthy replaced her as the interim superintendent. Since then, the Mt Greylock School Committee has been conducting a search for a new superintendent. From four final candidates, the School Committee narrowed their search to two for final review: Dr. Frank Baran and Dr. Douglas Dias.
On March 23rd, members of the Mt. Greylock community and the School Council conducted interview sessions throughout the day with two candidates, collecting final input and knowledge to inform their decision. The two candidates presented themselves professionally and convincingly, albeit with different approaches towards and experience with superintendency.
Dr. Baran is a superintendent with thirteen years of experience at the Woodstock School District in Connecticut, a school district divided between two towns, similar to the structure of our own district. Previous to that position, Dr. Baran served in U.S. military for two years, one year in the continental United States and one year in Vietnam. He later worked as a superintendent in several other schools, a principal, and a science teacher. In his interviews, Dr. Baran spoke eloquently and calmly, discussing his long years of experience, his support for the performing arts, and his understanding of the budget crisis at Mt Greylock.
Dr. Dias is applying for the superintendency from his position as principal in Medway in Eastern Massachusetts. Previously, he worked as an engineer for General Dynamics, helping to build nuclear submarines until he chose to reconsider his career, deciding to help build the world rather than destroy it, and he move to science teaching. After teaching, Dias was promoted to vice principal, working in several schools and dealing with two renovations in the process. In his bid for the position, his first attempt at a superintendency, Dr. Dias focused on his past experiences in high schools and how he hopes to transfer these skills to the Mt Greylock Regional School District, as well as his belief in student empowerment, the arts and technology, and elective options.
At a late night meeting the same day as the interviews, the Mt Greylock School Council debated whether to immediately vote on the candidate they wished to move forward with or spend time reviewing the candidates’ referrals and go through vote on a later date. Weighing the risks of potentially losing the candidates to other schools, and after reviewing reports of the candidates generated by the community, the council decided to vote immediately. They unanimously voted to continue the search with Dr. Douglas Dias as the only candidate. Shortly afterwards, the Council made a formal job offer and drafted a contract unanimously approved by both the Mt Greylock School Committee and School Union 71, which Dr. Dias plans to sign next week. Dias will assume the position of superintendent on July 1st. He is also expected to move to the area before then, and will be offered a $150,000 salary.
Written by: Kyle Alvarez, Simon Kent and Noah Savage