Former Supt. Dennis Soustek was hired Monday to oversee the search for a new superintendent for School District 135.
Soustek, who served as superintendent from 2006 to 2010 and again from January to June of this year, will be paid $60 per hour to screen applications, check references, and to make sure the candidates meet the criteria established by the district.
He said he would work a maximum of 100 hours on the search.
“Actually, it will probably be closer to 50 hours by the time it’s all over,” he said.
“I will help them in the search process as much or as little as they want me to,” Soustek said after Monday’s school board meeting.
The board hired Soustek in part because Dr. Carol Kunst, who is acting as interim superintendent, is seeking the position permanently.
“There are some tasks a superintendent or interim superintendent performs during searches that Carol can’t perform because she is applying,” Board President John Carmody said last month. “Dennis is going to fill in that void. He could be in when we conduct interviews but he can’t ask questions. He’s really augmenting the process.”
Board member Joe LaMargo said the board wanted to conduct its own superintendent search this time.
Soustek said the Illinois Association of School Boards helped in the earlier search and winnowed a list of applicants down to five candidates earlier this summer but the school board rejected all five candidates and decided to conduct its own search.
Kunst was hired in July after Soustek declined to take another interim appointment.
“I’m retired and can only work 100 days,” he said. “A district this size really needs a full-time superintendent.”
The deadline to apply for the superintendent’s position is Sept. 21.
“I hope to have all of the applications ready for the board to consider at its Sept. 24 meeting,” Soustek said.
The board has said it hopes to have a new superintendent in place by January. The opening was created when Paul Howell stepped down in January to return to teaching.