NewsEducation / May 28, 2019

IPS School Board Picks Superintendent Finalists In Secret, Public Interviews Set For Mid-June

The Indianapolis Public Schools logo in the central administration office. - WFYI News

The Indianapolis Public Schools logo in the central administration office.


Indianapolis Public Schools Board will hold public interviews for the next superintendent on June 18.

Of the 11 applicants who applied to be the superintendent — six are from out of state, and five are in Indiana, says Board President Michael O’Connor.

The full board spoke with five semi-finalists Tuesday in a closed-door session that began at 8:30 a.m.  By the end of the day, O’Connor says, the board chose an undisclosed number of finalists.

O’Connor declined to name any finalists Tuesday evening, instead waiting until mid-June. He says the finalists all share an attraction to Indianapolis.

“All very interested in the things going on here,” he says. “They all want to be part of an urban school system that is moving in the right direction.”

An IPS spokesperson would not comment on whether interim-Superintendent Aleesia Johnson is a finalist.

The board will hold a one-day public interview session for each finalist on June 18. The community will be able to submit potential questions to be asked of the finalists through the district website.

“We will say, ‘Public, please submit any questions you would like us to ask,” O'Connor says. “We won’t ask all of them obviously, we will sort them out.”

O’Connor says a hiring decision will be made “as soon as possible” following the interview.

Former superintendent Lewis Ferebee left IPS earlier this year, to lead Washington, D.C. public schools.

During IPS's superintendent search in 2013, a private search firm suggested 40 applicants to the board. For its new search, the district opted out of using a private firm and relied on local and  national organizations to get the word out.

The next superintendent is expected to face decisions about school closings, the use of Broad Ripple High School, the district's deficit and partnerships with charter school operators.

Contact WFYI education reporter Eric Weddle at or call (317) 614-0470. Follow on Twitter: @ericweddle.


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