Board Policy 16: Selection of the Director

Legal References:

Education Act: Sections 279-281 Qualifications and Appointment of Director of Education; Education Act: Sections 283-283.1 Chief Executive Officer and Additional Duties of Director of Education; Education Act: Part XI Directors of Education and Supervisory Officers; O. Reg. 176/10: Teachers’ Qualifications: Part III Supervisory Officers’ Qualification; O. Reg. 309 Supervisory Officers; Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act


Related References:

Board Policy 3 Director Job Description; Board Policy 4 Delegation of Authority; Administrative Procedure (AP) 496 Recruitment and Selection of Staff; IEL: The Ontario Leadership Framework

Avon Maitland District School Board recognizes the importance of appointing a highly effective system leader to implement the work of the Board. When selecting a Director of Education, the Board will seek a Chief Education Officer/Chief Executive Officer who will consider the needs of students and staff as the key mission of the organization.

The Board needs a Director who will promote a commitment to students and to student learning, achievement and well-being. The Director must provide educational leadership, and demonstrate fiscal responsibility, successful organizational and personnel management, and strategic planning. The Director will provide system leadership, establish positive working relations with the Board members and maintain valuable communications with students, staff members and the community.

The Director must uphold the Multi Year Strategic Plan (MYSP) of the Board and the Board Improvement and Equity Plan (BIEP). The Director will demonstrate leadership in attracting and retaining quality staff members. The Director will develop effective communications with all stakeholders to promote and protect public education in the District and in Ontario.

Avon Maitland District School Board is committed to a robust and rigorous selection process for the Director’s position, that will ensure the successful candidate can navigate the complexity of the educational landscape and possess the practical skills needed for this senior level position.

Avon Maitland District School Board shall recruit and select a candidate for the position of Director of Education who exhibits strong, responsive, dedicated and knowledgeable administrative leadership for the District. The Director of Education will ensure effective and efficient use of Board resources.

1. The Selection Process

1.1 To ensure a smooth transition from an existing contract to a new one, within one year of the Director’s contract end-date, but prior to the date specified for notice of termination without cause required within the Director’s contract (currently 6 months), the Chair of the Board and Director should begin discussions on whether the Director is planning to leave or whether the parties wish to consider a renewal or extension of the Director’s contract. (see Section 9 below) Either party can initiate the conversation.

1.2 When a) the retirement or resignation date of the Director is announced to the Board of Trustees, b) it appears to the Board that negotiations with the current Director under Section 9, below, regarding an extension or renewal of their current contract may not be successful, or c) in any event, no later than 6 months prior to the expiry date of the current Director’s contract, the Board shall establish, in a timely fashion, an Ad Hoc Director’s Selection Committee. The Director’s Selection Committee shall consist of all the members of the Board. The Chair of the Board, or designate, will act as the Chair of the Director’s Selection Committee.

1.3 All meetings of the Ad Hoc Director’s Selection Committee shall be in Closed Session and shall include Trustees only. In keeping with our Code of Conduct, no questions will be answered in public about the process except with the statement, “It is a confidential process and cannot be discussed.”

2. Determination of Recruitment Method
 
2.1 The Director’s Selection Committee shall determine the process by which to undertake the recruitment process, from the list of three (3) processes listed in Section 2.4, below, deemed compliant with the Board’s Procurement Administrative Procedures.
 
2.2 When considering which process to undertake, the Director’s Selection Committee shall consider: the importance of maintaining objectivity during the process; the expertise available within the committee; and training/support required by the committee in the areas of development of a candidate profile, advertising, screening, reference gathering, interview preparation, selection process, etc.
 
2.3 When choosing the process that allows the use of a recruitment firm, the Committee should carefully consider the attributes desired in the recruitment firm in order to ensure alignment between the values of the Board and the successful firm.
 
2.4 The three (3) options available are as follows:
 
2.4.1 A non-competitive selection of a reputable recruitment firm. This option requires a Board motion to bypass the Board’s competitive procurement rules.
 
2.4.2 An open, competitive procurement of a recruitment firm using a Request for Proposal (RFP) process facilitated by the Board’s Procurement Services Department. This option requires a Board motion to approve the selection of the successful recruitment firm. See Administrative Procedure 516 Procurement (Purchasing) for further information on this process.
 
2.4.3 A competitive procurement of a recruitment firm by utilizing the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services (MGCS) Vendor of Record for Executive/Talent Search Services. This option requires a Board motion to approve the selection of the successful recruitment firm. See the Ontario Government’s MGCS Supply Chain website: https://www.doingbusiness.mgs.gov.on.ca/mbs/psb/psb.nsf/vorsearch?openform for further information about this process.

3. Recruitment Process
 
3.1 Once the method of recruitment has been determined, the following steps shall be followed:

3.1.1 If the Committee uses a recruitment firm, it may ask the successful firm to perform any of the duties outlined in this policy. References below to the ‘Recruiter’ can be read as the ‘Selection Committee’ or as ‘Recruiter, in consultation with the Committee’, as appropriate.

3.1.2 Establish tentative timelines for the various aspects of the process, including advertising, application deadline, short listing, interviews, reference checks, decision and start date.

3.1.3 The Recruiter shall initiate the advertising process in accordance with the Board’s Recruitment and Selection policies and communications procedures in place per the Human Resource Services Department’s standards and at the direction of the Selection Committee, and may include:

3.1.3.1 Posting the vacancy within the Board and making every reasonable effort to ensure that qualified Board employees are made aware of the selection process;
3.1.3.2 Posting the vacancy externally in any location deemed appropriate by the Selection Committee.

3.1.4 Review the existing Board Policy #3 Director of Education and Secretary of the Board Job Description to determine if any changes are required or desired to support the Director of Education selection process. This document will be distributed to applicants.

The planning and development of a candidate profile for the Director of Education position criteria will be undertaken through collaboration between the Selection Committee and Recruiter. The Recruiter may seek input from senior staff and other stakeholders as appropriate. The profile will incorporate key components of Board Policy #3 Director Job Description, leadership qualities and attributes sought in the ideal candidate, key priorities of the Board to be accomplished by the new Director and any other pertinent selection criteria that reflect the needs of the system. This document will be distributed to applicants.

3.1.5 Review the current Director’s existing contract with the Board’s Legal Counsel, and create a draft contract by looking at the existing contract, current Board policies (Policy #3 and #16), and gathering information on Ministry regulations and what is competitive to determine the parameters of the negotiations with the successful applicant. Review the draft contract with the Board’s Legal Counsel who will ensure compliance with all relevant legislation and provide any further advice to the Chair that Counsel considers advisable in ensuring the clarity of the contract and in protecting and advancing the interests of the Board. Update Board policies if necessary.

4. The Screening Process

4.1 The Recruiter will study all submissions from all candidates, and undertake necessary means to determine each candidate’s qualifications, and select an appropriate number of candidates for further consideration (a ‘long-list’). The Director’s Selection Committee will review the ‘long-list’ candidates and determine a ‘short-list’ for interviews.

5. Candidates Selected for an Interview

5.1 The established interview format and process must be conducted in a fair and consistent manner and align with all applicable Board policies regarding hiring and human resource practices, including all equity policies and the Ontario Human Rights Code.
 
5.2 Final consideration will include an interview of all short-listed candidates and a review of all information gathered to date. If necessary, a second interview may be undertaken. The successful candidate requires the support of at least a two-thirds majority of the Director’s Selection Committee.

5.3 Members of the Committee must participate in all aspects/steps of the selection process where continuity and consistency are required. A Trustee who cannot participate in all aspects of the process will be kept informed and input may be sought from them.

6. Negotiations with Selected Candidate

6.1. Once the successful candidate is determined, the Chair will contact the candidate, and the Chair of the Board, or designate, will begin negotiations over the contract. The contract will be reviewed by the Board’s Legal Counsel to ensure compliance with all relevant legislation and to provide any further advice to the Chair that Counsel considers advisable in ensuring the clarity of the contract and in protecting and advancing the interests of the School Board.

6.2 The unsuccessful candidates will be informed by the Recruiter following a procedure determined by the Director’s Selection Committee.

7. Director’s Selection Committee Decision

7.1. Once Ministry approval has been received for the appointment of the Director, the Committee of the Whole Board shall make a recommendation in Regular Session that the Board hire the successful candidate to the position of Director of Education and Secretary of the Avon Maitland District School Board. A two-thirds majority is required.

8. Appointment of Director of Education and Secretary of the Board

8.1 The Board members resolve to appoint the candidate as Director of Education and Secretary of the Board.
8.2 The Board motion shall include the start date.
8.3 The status of the contract is noted in the motion. If a contract is not yet finalized, a later motion to accept the contract is required.

9. Contract Renewal/Extension Process

9.1 Within one year prior to the conclusion of the term of the current Director’s contract, but prior to the date specified for notice of resignation/retirement within the Director’s contract (i.e. 6 months), the Chair of the Board and Director may wish to consider a renewal or extension of the Director’s contract. Either party can initiate the conversation.

9.2 In the event that, under Section 9.1, above, the Director indicates a desire to extend or renew the contract, the Chair will present the Director’s position to the Board of Trustees in a Closed Session meeting of the Committee of the Whole Board, attended by Trustees only.

9.3 The Committee of the Whole Board will consider, in such a meeting, the Director’s prior Performance Assessment reports and the most recent Leadership Review report as part of their decision to extend or renew. The Chair will communicate regularly with the Director throughout the process, bearing in mind any guidance provided by the Committee of the Whole Board.

9.4 Where, by a motion supported by at least two-thirds of the Committee of the Whole Board, the Committee indicates its desire to negotiate a renewal or extension of the current Director’s contract, the Chair will negotiate the terms of the new agreement with the Director.

9.5 Subject to the limitations set out in Section 9.7, below, the terms of the extended or renewed contract may include amendments to the existing contract that are acceptable to the Director and are endorsed by the Board under Section 9.8, below.

9.6 In conducting these negotiations, the Chair will consult with Board Legal Counsel who will ensure compliance with all relevant legislation and provide any further advice to the Chair that Counsel considers advisable in ensuring the clarity of the contract and in protecting and advancing the interests of the Board.

9.7 Signing a new contract:

9.7.1 Renewal of a contract shall not exceed the length of the current contract except under extraordinary circumstances. Legal counsel shall be consulted in this case before discussions continue.

9.7.2 Extension of a contract should be up to two (2) years in length.

9.8 The Board of Trustees may agree to renew/extend the contract through a Board motion. Any such motion requires the support of at least a two-thirds majority of the Board.
 
Revised May, 2022