On Wednesday, Sept. 13, the Red Clay Board School Board unanimously selected longtime Chief Financial Officer Jill Floore to serve as interim superintendent until they name a permanent replacement.

Floore’s start date is Nov. 1, when current Superintendent Dr. Merv Daugherty leaves to lead Chesterfield County Public Schools in Virginia.

According to a press release from the district, board members said they felt fortunate to have someone on staff with Floore’s experience and skills who can manage the district while board members work with the community to find Daugherty’s successor.

Board President Catherine Thompson said her fellow members the utmost confidence Floore’s abilities to manage the district while searching for Daugherty’s replacement.

“She knows our plan and she will carry it out,” Thompson said.

Board members also expressed the desire not to name an interim who might apply for the permanent position, the press release states.

Floore said she does not plan to apply for the superintendent position.

According to the release, the district has maintained “excellent financial stewardship” and implemented significant investments in operating and capital infrastructure under Floore’s guidance. 

In August, Floore announced that the state of district finances would allow Red Clay to delay an expected operating referendum for at least 18 months.  This followed Floore’s July announcement that district residents would see a tax rate decrease for the current fiscal year.

Floore was named Business Manager of the Year by her peers in 2017.  Under her leadership, the district created the Community Financial Review Committee and instituted transparent and effective accounting practices.

Floore, who has worked 11 years for the district, said she is honored to take the job.

“I have great respect for the teachers in our district as well as Red Clay’s outstanding administrative team,” Floore said.  “My goal is to ensure continuity and provide a smooth transition as our team builds on the district successes and supports the Board in their search for the next superintendent.”

The district has retained the Institute for Public Administration (IPA) at the University of Delaware to assist in the search for Daugherty’s permanent replacement.

Since 2009, the IPA has worked with eight Delaware school districts in their search for a new leader, including Red Clay, Colonial and Christina.

“They are familiar with Delaware and their plan calls for a very open and transparent process that provides for a lot of community input,” said Thompson.

Plans for the search include multiple public meetings to gather input during the process, and an online survey. 

The district will announce details on the search shortly and expects to name a new superintendent by March 2019, the release states.

Red Clay is Delaware’s largest school system and leads Delaware in a number of academic markers, including SAT and ACT scores and Advanced Placement classes, the release states.

In March, the district was named a national Grand Prize winner of the Magna Award from the National School Boards Association for its college and career readiness programs.