Greenfield Public Schools

4 finalists nominated for Greenfield supt.

GREENFIELD — A search committee has nominated three long-time principals and a chief schools officer as finalists to be the next Greenfield school superintendent.

All four candidates are from out of town and at least two are finalists for other superintendent jobs in the Pioneer Valley. The Greenfield School Committee plans to visit the finalists’ school districts and then interview them in Greenfield next month, before choosing one to succeed retiring Superintendent Susan Hollins.

Jordana Harper-Ewert, a chief schools officer for Springfield Public Schools, is one of three finalists in Northampton’s superintendent search. That school board, which is conducting its third search in two years, is interviewing candidates this week and plans to choose a candidate Tuesday .

Timothy Lee, another contender for the Greenfield job, was one of three finalists rejected by the Northampton school board last fall. Lee, principal of Lenox Elementary School, is also a finalist in the Belchertown superintendent race, which will be decided in mid-April.

Two other candidates didn’t turn up as finalists in any superintendent search announcements online, although some school boards, like Greenfield, may be announcing finalists this week.

Jahmal Mosley, principal of Somerset Berkley Regional High School, is one of four finalists vying for a high school principal position in Reading. And James O’Shea, principal at The Bromfield School in Harvard, tried unsuccessfully for superintendent of North Middlesex Regional School District two years ago.

The search committee selected the finalists from nine semi-finalist candidates. One dropped out of contention but the other eight attended one-hour interviews at Greenfield Community College this month. The Massachusetts Association of School Committees collected applications, did the initial screening and is assisting with both the semi-finalist and finalist interviews.

All of the candidates are licensed to be superintendents in Massachusetts, although none have superintendent experience.

Harper-Ewert’s job is the closest in description: as one of four chief schools officers, she supervises 16 schools and more than 6,000 students. She started her career as a teacher, including her first job at Greenfield Center School in 2003, before spending six years as an elementary school principal in Chicopee.

Lee, a former Spanish teacher, has 10 years of principal experience plus five as a director of an independent school. The Great Barrington resident has served in his current principal position in Lenox since 2008.

Mosley, a Somerset resident, was a special education teacher before spending four years in middle school assistant principal positions. He served for five years as house principal of Brattleboro Union High School, in Vermont, and was then hired for the Somerset principal job in 2011.

O’Shea, of Bolton, began his career as a social studies teacher in New Hampshire before moving into the North Middlesex Regional School District as dean of students. He spent eight years there, moving his way up the ranks to principal, before taking his current job in Harvard eight years ago.

Three have advanced degrees and Harper-Ewert is currently pursuing a doctorate. They all earned master’s degrees in Massachusetts.

Three of the finalists earned their undergraduate degrees at one of the schools in the Five College Consortium: Harper-Ewert went to Mount Holyoke College and both Mosley and O’Shea attended the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Lee attended school in Iowa.

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