Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q: Why did the Board choose to hire a search firm to find a new superintendent?
    The Board of Education held open work sessions to decide on whether to hire a search firm. They sought out expertise from staff who had experience in previous superintendent searches and consulted with external experts and leaders from other schools districts.

    The Board also worked with the Minnesota School Boards Association and Council of the Great City Schools to identify best practices in the search for a new superintendent. After review, board members opted to use an external search firm for a few key reasons.

    • Transparency: They wanted to allow the search to take place without perception of the Board influencing the process or the selection of candidates for final consideration.
    • Confidentiality: Many candidates may not apply for a job unless the process is confidential. If Saint Paul Public Schools conducted its own search, every application would become public whether or not the applicant is a viable candidate.
    • Reach: A search firm would have greater access to qualified candidates not only in Minnesota, but across the country.
    • Resources: Search firms have greater capacity, experience and resources to fully evaluate candidates.


    Q: How much does a search firm cost?
    The cost to contract with a search firm can typically run up to $150,000, but depends on the final services they offer. The costs and fees associated with a search firm are evaluated before final selection by the Board of Education.