Community gives feedback on superintendent search

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DICKINSON, N.D. - The Dickinson school district needs to hire a new superintendent, and Thursday, plenty of people came out to voice their opinions. Superintendent Douglas Sullivan announced his retirement after nine years.

Gery Smith doesn't want nine years of progress to stop.

"It's running OK, but we need someone to take it to the next level. Especially on the communication side of things,” said Smith.

It's Rick Mill's job to make sure the district moves forward.

"Dickinson's in a great place. I look at that as an opportunity coming in here and facilitating in the search around rapid growth in student enrollment,” said Mills, who works for the search firm Ray and Associates.

That growth in enrollment led the current administration to reopen Berg as an elementary school. The district has more than 1,900 kids in K-5. But, the new superintendent will have to staff that school, as well as others around the city. Hundreds of years of experience are retiring.

"Their focus needs to be on students and be open to the community,” said Youth for Christ Executive Director Brett Eliason.

Smith says Dickinson High needs improvements, too.

"Either updated or look at a completely look at different type of school. It's been there a long time, it's served it's need. It needs an upgrade,” said Smith.

Mills, a former superintendent himself, says both the district and candidate have to benefit.

"Make sure that this is a good fit for you and a good fit for the school district,” said Mills.

Ray and Associates says that the deadline for hiring the next superintendent will be sometime in mid-April.