OZARK, Ala. (WDHN) — The Ozark City School board is on the hunt for the next city superintendent and residents are making sure their opinions about the new leader are heard.
“We need more African Americans in our system,” Ozark resident Gene Lynn said.
This sentiment echoed throughout the meeting Tuesday morning between citizens of Ozark and the chief search consultant from the Alabama Association of School Boards.
Multiple meetings were held throughout the day in order to learn what residents, educators, and city officials want from the next superintendent.
In addition to asking for more representation in the schools and on the board, attendees also said the next leader must be an active member of the community.
“We need somebody young, energetic, and really believes in Ozark and will be involved in the community,” Dale County District Attorney Kirke Adams said. “Like they said, not just sitting in school and they drive to Dothan to live. That they are at ball games, they’re at church here. They’re at events here and they’re seen and they’re known who they are.”
Not only were citizens clear about what they want, they also described what needs to be fixed in the school system.
Topics included standardized test scores, virtual teaching delivery methods, and more diversity in the school staff.
“When we go to the school board and the superintendent, we’re always told we’re doing the best that we can do,” Lynn said. “We’re doing the best that we can do we just can’t get teachers to come here. That’ s an indication to me that maybe just maybe you’re not qualified to do what it is we need to have done.”
Now that the search has started and voices have been heard, who will be the next school leader?