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Residency rule has purpose

February 19, 2012
The Leader Herald

The Gloversville Enlarged School District withdrew its offer to a candidate for superintendent because of apparent problems he had meeting the district's residency requirements.

The district requires its superintendent to live within the Hamilton-Fulton-Montgomery Board of Cooperative Educational Services district.

Some observers take issue with the residency requirement. They contend the district would have a better chance of finding a qualified superintendent without requiring the person to live in or near the Gloversville school district.

Perhaps without the requirement, the district would attract more interest, but the residency rule serves a valid purpose. The district should stick to its guns on this.

The superintendent of schools makes decisions and offers recommendations to the Board of Education that affect not only the schools, employees and students, but also parents and the surrounding community. The superintendent should have a stake in the area. He or she should be here to see and feel Gloversville schools' local involvement and reach. The superintendent should attend after-school activities and be around parents, students and teachers during weekend events. The superintendent shouldn't be someone who rushes out at the end of the workday to drive 50 or more miles to get home, or who puts Gloversville schools out of mind on weekends.

The boundaries of the three-county BOCES are generous. Anyone who sincerely wants the job should have no problem finding a nice home in the counties. We would hope the chosen candidate not only would want to live within the BOCES district, but also the Gloversville school district.

In Gloversville's recent round in the search for a superintendent, the residency rule may have helped the district realize its candidate would have been the wrong fit for the job. As long as the district offers a competitive salary, it will find the right person.



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