One of the top two candidates for the Anchorage School District superintendent position is finished with his first day of an interview that will last until this weekend.
Jim Browder had a very busy Thursday, meeting with school district and city leaders as well as local media.
Browder spent the day touring several schools in the district as well, meeting students and principals.
Browder worked for about six months at Edison State College in Florida after spending seven years as superintendent of Lee County schools in that state.
In the short time he was at Edison, he generated controversy among some faculty there, who said they were concerned about Browder’s qualifications. But the Anchorage School Board has pointed to Brower’s Lee County school experience, saying he was able to turn around student performance.
“I think you’ll see positive academic growth every year,” said Browder of his record at the district. “I think you’ll see the graduation rate going up to the highest level in the history of the district, the dropout rate the lowest in the history of the district.”
School board president Gretchen Guess says that having Browder in Anchorage gives both parties a better chance to assess Browder’s fit with the job.
“You can really understand their personality,” Guess said. “You can follow up easily with questions you have, you can get a sense of how people interact, and how they will interact with the board.”
Steve Atwater, the current superintendent of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Schools -- and the other finalist for the superintendent position – will undergo a similar interview process next week.
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