Lycée narrows interim CEO candidates to two

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The committee tasked with finding Lycée Français de la Nouvelle-Orléans’ next interim CEO voted Sunday to move two candidates forward in the application process.

Keith Bartlett, a former principal of John Dibert School who now mentors principals through Louisiana A+ Schools, will progress to the next step, the committee voted.

So will Joseph Daschbach, an educational consultant. Daschbach has worked in several schools, including Lagniappe Academies and New Orleans Center for Science and Mathematics.

Daschbach and Bartlett will be given until the end of the day Friday to complete a project that’s intended to showcase their skills as educational leaders, said committee member Tim Gray.

The project asks the applicants to make a 90-day plan outlining what they would do with their first few months at Lycee Francais, committee member Kelly McClure said.

“Obviously we’re looking at understanding what they know, how much work they’ve done, but also pulling on their experiences and skills, in what it is they look for, what they prioritize, and how they might go about it,” McClure added.

The committee hopes to hold a meeting next week so that the candidates can present their projects, Gray said.

Gray said that the committee is working on setting a date to recommend one of the candidates as the school’s next interim CEO to the board. The plan and timeline adopted by the board allows interviews to continue until June 22 with a goal of recommending an interim CEO to the board by June 30.

The committee amended Sunday’s agenda in order to be able to vote to move the candidates forward. The meeting was called initially in order to discuss four additional applicants.

Members held the Sunday meeting outdoors because the school was closed. They climbed into someone’s car for a brief executive session to discuss the new applicants.

After they emerged from the car, committee members announced that they wouldn’t be interviewing any of the four newest applicants.

Greenwald said that the committee compared the applications to the other nine they had already received, but decided against moving them to the next round.

Parents who had come to the meeting had several questions.

Parent Niki Rachal wanted to make sure that the candidates who were moving forward were available to start working at the school immediately, should they get hired.

Committee chair Erin Greenwald confirmed that they were.

And parent and Loyola English instructor Robert Bell wanted to make sure that the candidates were likely to accept the position if offered.

“And they want the job? We think?” Bell asked.

Previously, the committee had voted to extend its top job offer to Mireille Rabaté, the San Francisco school administrator. But she turned them down in May, just a week after being offered the job.

“I feel extremely comfortable with these decisions,” Greenwald said about the current candidates. “We’re in a very lucky, I think, position.”

With three of five members present, the committee had a quorum present.

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