Tuckahoe Superintendent Joseph Chris Dyer is once again considering leaving the one-school district at the end of this school year, having been named one of two finalists for a superintendent’s position at the Marion Independent School District in Iowa.
The potential move was announced on the Marion Independent School District website on Tuesday morning. The statement said the superintendent position will go to either Mr. Dyer or Dr. Michael Houselog of Illinois. Both men are looking to replace Sarah Pinion, who will retire from the Marion district on June 30.
The announcement comes just four months after Mr. Dyer, who joined the Tuckahoe School District in 2010, turned down a similar administrative position at the Susquehanna Valley School District in upstate New York after receiving a substantial raise from the Tuckahoe Board of Education.
Mr. Dyer declined to comment on Tuesday morning, saying the firm responsible for the search in Iowa, Ray and Associates, has asked him not to speak to the press. In a statement on the district website, Mr. Dyer said it was the Marion community that most drew him to the district.
“My hope is to serve where educational needs are a professional match with my skills as an educational leader,” Mr. Dyer said in the statement. “I highly regard the excellence and community pride that are characteristics of Marion Independent School District and am honored to be considered for the position of superintendent. Thank you for your attention and interest in my application.”
The Marion Independent School District features six schools and a home-school program in Iowa. Calls to the district office were not immediately returned on Tuesday.
According to a report in The Gazette, an Iowa-based newspaper, the search firm hired to replace Ms. Pinion filtered through 46 applications before presenting 11 to the Marion School Board. Five people were interviewed, through a Skype video chat, before Mr. Dyer and Dr. Houselog were announced as finalists. Both finalists will be in Iowa on Thursday, April 23, for another round of interviews, with the board expected to make a decision on Thursday night. The Marion School District hopes to name the new administrator by Friday.
Last October, Mr. Dyer had announced he would be leaving the Tuckahoe School District in January to take an administrative position in the Susquehanna Valley School District. However, after failed contract negotiations with the Susquehanna Valley district, a second defeat by voters of a proposed merger between the Southampton and Tuckahoe school districts, and a $32,000 raise to $190,000, Mr. Dyer announced in December that he had decided to stay with Tuckahoe.
At the time, he said he had unfinished business in Tuckahoe and hoped to see some form of stability in the small district’s future.
“I really appreciated the hard work the Tuckahoe and Southampton communities put forth for the merger, and I just see that there is unsettled work that needs to be completed from the standpoint of the future for our kids,” he said at the time. “I would like to be a part of that. This is a wonderful community and a wonderful school.”