May 23, 2012


City BOE hires Lutz as interim superintendent

Finalists announced next week

Staff Reporter

The Cortland Board of Education temporarily replaced departing Superintendent of Schools Larry Spring with his predecessor, John Lutz, as interim superintendent Tuesday.
The board voted unanimously and without discussion to appoint Lutz, who was the Cortland city school district’s superintendent of schools from 2000 until 2005, at a rate of $550 per day, starting June 1 and extending until a new superintendent of schools starts work.
Lutz will not receive insurance or benefits because he already receives them from New York state through his retirement.
He was not present at the meeting.
Spring takes over the Schenectady city schools on June 1. He has been Cortland’s superintendent since 2006.
The board has met with four candidates to replace Spring permanently, out of about eight to 10 resumes submitted to the board by Jessica Cohen, district superintendent of Onondaga-Cortland-Madison BOCES, the search consultant.
Board President Joe Lyman and Cohen said the board has been pleased with the range of applicants. About 25 people applied.
The board plans to have two to three finalists meet with community and teacher focus groups and then with the public on May 29 and 30, Lyman said. He said the finalists might be announced after they have accepted the offer to come back and speak with the public.
The board’s goal is to extend an offer by early June and have the person in place in September.
Lyman thanked Spring for his service to the district and wished him luck in his “daunting task” of managing the Schenectady district, which is about three times the size of Cortland’s.
Lyman said the board that hired Spring thought the Cortland district had become stagnant and complacent, giving him a mandate to change things.
“It wasn’t pretty, there were bumps along the road,” Lyman said.
Spring made the district stronger academically and excelled at setting goals, Lyman said, and helped the district’s finances become more stable.
The board and the 19 members of the public in attendance applauded. Nobody else commented. Spring thanked Lyman and said, “It’s been fun.”
Board member Janet Griffin earlier thanked the public for responding to a survey on the school district web site concerning the new superintendent.
The results, listed on the web site, say 150 people responded, 42 percent of them teachers and 29 percent parents of Cortland students. Of the rest, 16 percent were noninstructional staff, 3 percent were students and 10 percent were community members without children in school.
The survey asked respondents to list traits they would like to see in the new superintendent of schools.


To read this article and more, pick up today's Cortland Standard
Click here to subscribe