ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It’s just eight months before the state’s largest school district will need a new leader and today, the APS School Board took its first steps in the process of figuring out how they’ll find who’s next. The APS Board took part in a workshop today, outlining how they’ll oversee a national search for a new superintendent. 

“We know this is without a doubt the most important undertaking that boards of education are faced with and so we want to do everything in our power to make this a success for you and the students and staff and community of APS,” says Dr. Walter Cooper, consultant for McPherson & Jacobson Search Firm. 

A search firm called a “McPherson and Jacobson” is leading the process to replace current superintendent Scott Elder. He’s slated to retire at the end of June, having led the district since the pandemic. 

Today we learned more about a timeline and how the search firm will do its work. The national search will include video interviews with applicants which they’re hoping to do in December. The search firm says APS should aim to narrow its candidates to five or six top choices by the end of January. 

Next month voters will pick at least two new board members, while one incumbent is running for re-election versus others. One board member stressed the importance of making sure new board members are included in superintendent search. 

“We’ve got a very aggressive calendar coming forward and some real good guidance in terms of the things that we need to think about to prepare so that we can make sure that we get adequate community input and thinking about the qualities and the traits that we’re looking for,” says Yolanda Montoya-Cordova, APS Board Chair President.   

Board members are also considering where to post the job, public input surveys and if they’ll change the pay from superintendent Elder’s around $240,000 a year base salary. The board says they hope to have a new superintendent by spring, so they can begin July 1st. The search firm says it could have the job posted as early as next week.