TAMPA — What do you want from your public school system?
A lot depends on who is running it. And if you live in Hillsborough County, now is your time to weigh in on who will serve as the next superintendent.
Jeff Eakins, who is retiring in June, will have held the job five years. His predecessors — MaryEllen Elia, Earl Lennard and Walter Sickles — each served for roughly a decade. That’s unusual. And it shows how powerful this person is.
The superintendent will lead the eighth largest school district in the United States, educating more than 200,000 students and supervising a workforce of nearly 25,000.
So what kind of person should be hired for this job?
The school district has a survey on its website that you can use to provide some guidance. A link is here: hillsboroughschools.org/superintendentsearch
It doesn’t take long, and this decision matters to the entire community and the next generation of children.
The survey was to close on Sunday. But, as of Friday, only 1,960 people had responded and the consultants want the best possible measure of what matters to the community. And so they extended the deadline to 8 a.m. on Monday.