Superintendent discussion planned at Scottsdale school board

The Scottsdale Unified School District will allow public comment on the interim superintendent search process Thursday, April 12. (file photo)

The Scottsdale Unified School District Governing Board is allowing community input on desired qualities and qualifications for an interim superintendent at its special meeting Thursday, April 12.

The Governing Board will allow for public comment on the matter at its 3 p.m. meeting at Mohave District Annex, 8500 E. Jackrabbit Road.

Written comments are also being accepted through the Governing Board’s website.

Within the meeting’s agenda includes discussion on the interim superintendent selection process including search methods and timeline, and the process of selection. Process for selection includes methods of communication to the community.

The Governing Board also has a discussion of permanent superintendent selection process slated on its agenda, although public comment on the permanent role isn’t noted on the agenda.

Action may be taken on matters to include:

  • An abbreviated timeline for selecting an interim superintendent;
  • A request for proposals from search firms to assist the district in securing a permanent superintendent;
  • Directing administration or its attorneys to proceed with seeking candidates for consideration by the board for the position of interim superintendent;
  • Revising the Governing Board’s policy on school attorney.

The school district’s former superintendent, Dr. Denise Birdwell, and the Governing Board agreed to settlement terms with a lump sum of $150,000 on April 6, allowing SUSD to begin discussing a new superintendent.

In March, the Governing Board moved to dismiss Dr. Birdwell and former Chief Business and Operations Officer, Louis Hartwell.

The administrators dismissals come amidst an Arizona Attorney General’s investigation into SUSD’s business practices, among other public outcries regarding school construction projects, teacher employment agreements, a hired architecture firm, procurement practices, nepotism, conflicts of interest and overall lack of community trust for several months.

The district claims an internal investigation into alleged wrongdoings revealed Dr. Birdwell violated 14 Governing Board policies and Arizona Administrative Code, as well as her employment contract.

Dr. Amy Fuller was appointed to acting superintendent on Feb. 27.

Northeast Valley News Editor Melissa Rosequist can be e-mailed at or can be followed on Twitter at

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