Leadership changes at Montera, Joaquin Miller and Oakland High

principal2resize.jpgLast week, I was allowed to sit in on the auditions — I mean, interviews — for new principal at Joaquin Miller Elementary School and at Montera Middle School.

I wrote one story about the new process being used by the Oakland school district to choose school leaders, and another about the challenges and the potential at Montera. (One candidate, pictured here, goes through a role play during the interview.)

This week, the state administrator approved the committee’s selections of Russom Mesfun for principal at Montera, and Ifeoma Obodozie for Joaquin Miller. It’s not official yet — apparently there are still the fingerprints, TB testing and other loose ends to deal with — but it’s close. 

Now, Oakland High School is trying to fill its leadership void. On Monday, while I was away, district administrator Alison McDonald held a meeting at the high school after the sudden resignation of Clement Mok, who had led the 1,900-student school since 2002.

Oakland High will likely have an interim principal while the district recruits a permanent replacement, said Joel Baum, the district’s leadership development manager. Then, possibly sometime in mid-fall, a select committee including parents and teachers will use the same process as Montera and Joaquin Miller to help choose a new leader.

In other words, they’ll put the candidates through hours of role plays, interviews and case studies before comparing notes and making their picks.

Any thoughts on the subject? Feel free to discuss them here.

Katy Murphy

Education reporter for the Oakland Tribune. Contact me at kmurphy@bayareanewsgroup.com.