The new principal hiring process

AHSs current principal and ASDs new Assistant Superintendent, Tharyn Mulberry.

Photo Courtesy of Tharyn Mulberry

AHS’s current principal and ASD’s new Assistant Superintendent, Tharyn Mulberry.

Now that AHS Principal, Tharyn Mulberry, has taken the new position of Assistant Superintendent for the ASD, the administration must go through the process of hiring a new principal for AHS.

In the process of hiring a new principal, the first step is for the administration to hire a search firm. The search firm will post the position, meaning that they post it in newspapers, on our school websites, etc. The search firm also headhunts, which means that they know of professionals that are looking for jobs, and they match them with positions. All of these things happen at the same time.

After applicants send in their applications, an application pool is created. A group of people, including the board of directors, the hiring committee, and the Superintendent and Assistant Superintendent, will get together and screen the applicant pool, followed by rounds of interviews. The pool of applicants gets less by about half every round of interviews until they get to about the final four. This is where the students get involved. The hiring committee, a group of students and the board of directors, get together for the final interview and ask the applicants questions. At the end of it, everyone who is in the final interview meeting gives recommendations to the hiring committee as to who would be the best for the job.

As the Assistant Superintendent, Mulberry will have a significant part in the hiring process. As the former principal of AHS, Mulberry will have a lot of insight into the characteristics the next principal must have.

“I think that Aspen’s a unique animal. I think you’re gonna have to be smart, you have to be out there with kids, and you have to be relatable. I think you have to have the characteristics of one, connecting with kids, and you also have to have that other special skill of connecting with teachers and making sure that works. And finally, if you want to hit a home run, you also must connect with the parent community,” Mulberry said.

Mulberry is also excited to have his experience in this position at AHS become a great use in the hiring of the new principal. Mulberry believes he will be able to be a good judge of character, among other things he can do.

“I can use my position to just be a mentor for whoever starts there, so just to help them out. I know the parents, know the students, know the teachers so I can help them out for a bit,” Mulberry said.

The AHS Board of Directors approves hiring. One or two of them usually serve as members of the hiring committee as well to represent the board, because they know what administration is looking for and how the process goes.

Susan Marolt is a member of the Board of Directors. She would love for the hiring process to have as much student input as it is possible.

“Hopefully we will get student participation. I think that’s important. When we hired Tharyn, we had some great student participants, so I certainly hope they will be involved in this process,” Marolt said.