Position Details
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District: Planada Elementary School District
Position/Title: Superintendent
Salary: Competitive and Negotiable
Closing Date: Friday, September 24, 2010

The Position

The Board of Trustees of Planada Elementary School District invites qualified, successful leaders to apply for the position of district superintendent. The current superintendent is the newly elected Merced County Superintendent of Schools and will assume office in January 2011.

The ideal candidate will be someone who is a strong leader with excellent communications and interpersonal skills.

The superintendent must be a "generalist" with experience in instruction, finance, budget, personnel, and special education.

The successful candidate will also be someone committed to becoming part of the Planada community and being highly visible and involved in the schools.

The Community

Planada, CA, is located nine miles east of Merced, CA, known as the "Gateway to Yosemite." Planada Elementary School District is a rural elementary district with a current enrollment of over 750 students. The district has been in declining enrollment, and growth in the community is not as fast as other adjacent areas in Merced County. It is a close knit community and very supportive of the school. The district is in the Le Grand High School District in Le Grand, California located four miles south of Planada.

Higher education opportunities include the University of California, Merced, which opened in 2005 and is the first research university built in the U.S. in the 21st century, and Merced College.

The District

The district is committed to preparing students to be productive, actively contributing citizens and continually strives to provide the best instruction from highly qualified teachers. Teachers collaborate weekly to update pacing calendars and to share teaching strategies. The curriculum is rigorous with high expectations. The district offers ongoing support for powerful uses of technology for staff and students, professional development for new and veteran staff, and electronic links to resources that are not available locally. The district continues to update technology and give students unlimited access.

The PESD Board and staff are committed to informing parents and community about the district's activities and look for feedback from parents to help shape the district's instruction and program.

The community is very supportive of the school district. In 2008 the community passed a $3.1 million bond to build a new middle school multi-purpose room and gymnasium.

Planada Schools have continuously improved their Academic Performance Index scores over the past six years. The elementary and middle schools have grown from deciles 1 and 2 to deciles 9 and 10. The current API for Planada Elementary is 738 and for Cesar Chavez Middle School 703.

Selection Criteria

The following criteria represent standards to be used in the evaluation of applications and in the selection of the superintendent.

Professional Experience and Preparation

  • California Administrative credential required
  • Principal experience required
  • Classroom teaching experience required
  • Superintendent, Assistant Superintendent or other district level experience desirable
  • Bilingual ability desirable

Personal Characteristics

  • Has high integrity and is honest, fair, and trustworthy
  • Is accessible and easily approachable and has an "open door" policy
  • Is a "people person" with strong public and human relations skills
  • Has excellent communications and listening skills and relates to people at all levels
  • Treats everyone equally and with respect
  • Is a strong leader who makes consistent and firm decisions
  • Is conscientious, highly motivated, and accepts responsibility
  • Is highly visible and active in the community, schools, and worksites and is committed to becoming part of the rural community the school district serves

Professional Skills and Abilities

  • Has a clear vision for education that maintains a focus on improving student performance
  • Is an instructional leader who can maintain the continuous student achievement improvement in the district
  • Is committed to work with the Board to develop a strong governing team and to provide the Board with relevant, timely, and accurate information, alternatives, and recommendations to make informed decisions in a timely manner
  • Is a strong visionary leader who sets achievable goals and holds self and staff accountable
  • Has excellent fiscal management skills as well as the ability to seek and find new funding grants
  • Has in-depth knowledge of the Education Code and other laws related to education programs
  • Has excellent knowledge of K-8 curriculum and understands current education theory, instructional techniques, curricular expectations, and laws and regulations at the state and federal levels
  • Has the ability to create a district climate of cooperation and collaboration in working with staff, parents, and community members
  • Demonstrates an understanding of collective bargaining and the ability to create a positive climate in employer/employee relations


Application Procedures

All applications will be held strictly confidential. Each applicant is requested to follow the procedures listed below. Those applicants wishing additional information should contact the board consultant:

Dr. Wendell Chun at (209) 613-2409

Applications must be submitted online to:

Planada Elementary School District
c/o Dr. Wendell Chun, Consultant
Dave Long and Associates, Executive Search Services
31500 Grape Street. Suite 3, # 412
Lake Elsinore, CA 92532-9702

All applicants must provide the following items by the closing date, September 24, 2010 (5:00 p.m.), to be considered:
  • A completed Application Information Form. (Please complete as instructed: do not complete by stating "see attached résumé".) The Application Information Form and brochure may be completed via the Dave Long and Associates web page at DLAssoc.com.
  • A personal letter of application stating reasons for interest in the Planada Elementary School District School District superintendent position
  • A résumé providing biographical background information about educational preparation, experience, and achievements
  • A placement file and/or five (5) current letters of professional references describing the applicant's performance in previously held positions
  • A photo copy of academic degrees and administrative credential(s)

It is the applicant's responsibility to submit placement papers or reference letters online to meet the September 24, 2010 (5:00 p.m.) deadline.


Selection Procedure

A professional screening committee of respected educational leaders will evaluate the qualifications of each applicant. The board and the screening committee will use the described criteria during the screening, interviewing and final decision-making process. After receiving the report of the committee, the board will select and interview the top candidates.

The board will then select and invite candidates for the final interviews, conduct the interviews and select the superintendent. Any applicant who contacts a board member with the intent of influencing the board's decision will be disqualified. Travel expenses for those candidates selected for the initial interview will be the responsibility of the candidate.

Salary and Contract Terms

The Planada Elementary School District Board of Education will offer a multi-year contract of employment with a salary that is competitive and negotiable based on the qualifications and experience of the successful candidate, plus fringe benefits.

It is the candidate's responsibility to provide the district with employment eligibility and verification of citizenship in compliance with the Immigration Reform and Control Act. The finalist will also be required to provide the district with certified transcripts that verify attainment of academic degrees and proof of appropriate credentials.

Board of Education

Term Expires

Mark Mendez, President


Yolanda Pino, Clerk


Daniel Chavez, Member


David Rodriguez, Member


Ignacio Yanez, Member


Applications Close

September 24, 2010 (5:00 p.m.)

Interviews are tentatively scheduled for October 15 and 16, 2010