Smyrna school board seeking to fill district superintendent position by May

Deborah Wicks

SMYRNA — After approving several amendments to the district superintendent job posting at the Smyrna school board meeting Thursday night, the “help wanted” notice officially went live as of Friday.

“The Smyrna School Board approved the second reading of the policy — they just needed to update it because it’s been about 20 years since they offered this position last,” said outgoing Smyrna School District superintendent Deborah Wicks.

The changes were mostly small semantic and procedural ones such as changing Department of Public Instruction, as the department used to be known, to Department of Education as it’s known today, she added.

Announcing her retirement in December, Ms. Wicks be capping off a career that’s been a lifelong endeavor. She has been employed by the district for about 40 years. Starting her career in 1967, she spent a year as an educable mentally handicapped teacher at Clayton Elementary School, 16 years as a special education teacher at Smyrna High School, four years as an associate principal for Clayton Elementary School and the last 19 as the district’s superintendent. She turns 71 in March.

The school board set the closing date for receiving applications for March 2, Ms. Wicks noted. The board will then review candidates, select interviewees and start meeting with them in late March.

According to the job posting on the school district’s website, the start date for the new superintendent will be June 1. Base requirements for the position include:

• Valid Superintendent’s Certification per Del. Admin. Code Reg. 1593

• Master’s Degree with a major in educational administration

• Minimum of seven years of education experience consisting of at least five years of teaching and two years of educational leadership

As of calendar year 2015, Ms. Wicks’s salary was $154,715.53, according to state payroll data.

“The school board’s goal is to make a decision on a final candidate in either April or May to fill the position,” Ms. Wicks added.

After taking some time with planned personal projects in retirement, Ms. Wicks says that she’d be happy to remain as an adviser to the district, should they need assistance.

“I’ve grown up here, I live here and my children are here. I’m not going anywhere. I will remain active in whatever capacity the school district wants me to,” she said. “My door is always open to this district — I really do love it.”

The job posting can be found on the district’s website: under “employment opportunities.”

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