Starting Point                                                 Page 6


Transition Tales

More so than just about any other public leadership role, superintendents fill a profession on the constant move, not always planned or desired.

This month’s issue examines some distinctive aspects of career transitions. Art Stellar, a veteran of six superintendencies, shares his experience-based advice on exiting gracefully and what to do once you’ve left a job. Freelancer Scott LaFee describes the unique handoff of district leadership taking place when the incoming and outgoing superintendents spend a year together. Joshua Starr, superintendent in Montgomery County, Md., details the formal approach of listening and learning that he followed upon entering the nation’s 17th-largest school district. Education writer Sarah Carr captures the eye-opening realities of working in higher education after years of public school leadership.

These stories are supplemented by several illustrative, first-person sidebars, all written by former superintendents: Steve Webb on spending two years as an understudy; Valerie Spriggs on working on the job with her successor for six months; Marsha Carr and Eugene Linton on moving into university roles; and Robert Zorn on a departure checklist for the end of a superintendency. (We’ve titled his piece, “Don’t Leave Behind a Mess.”)

Naturally, there’s much more to say on this expansive subject, so I’d like to hear from readers on other aspects of career transitions. It’s a subject we’ll be revisiting.


Jay P. Goldman, Editor
Voice: 703-875-0745
E-mail: jgoldman@aasa.org


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