The board is expected to have a contract with a new superintendent by the July 30 board meeting.
By MARALINE KUBIK
VINDICATOR STAFF WRITER
CANFIELD -- After nearly seven hours in executive session, the board of education passed a resolution at 1:34 a.m. today to enter into contract negotiations with Dante Zambrini to fill the superintendent's seat when Superintendent Doug Hiscox's resignation becomes effective Jan. 31, 2003.
The board called a special meeting for the purpose of choosing from among three candidates for the position -- Dennis Kowalski, Strongsville schools superintendent; Charles Swindler, Western Reserve schools superintendent; and Zambrini, Canfield's schools' assistant superintendent -- and went into executive session almost immediately after the 6:30 p.m. meeting began.
The vote was 3-2, with board members Chuck Eddy, Sam Pitzulo and Martha Zarlenga voting for Zambrini and board President Mark Squicquero and Bruce Brocker opposed.
During a regular meeting Wednesday, the board and several invited guests spent several hours in executive session questioning the candidates.
According to Hiscox, the board is expected to have a contract with Zambrini by the July 30 board meeting.
Despite the long wait, five Canfield residents were on hand to hear the board's recommendation.
"It's important for us to show the board that there are people who care what they do," said Dave Moore, a metallurgical engineer and 24-year resident of Canfield. Moore has two sons attending Canfield Village Middle School.
"We care about the kids in this community," said Anne Davis. Davis, a former Canfield school board member, is a graduate of Canfield High School and a high school teacher at Howland. Her oldest son is a graduate of Canfield, her younger children attend Canfield High School and Canfield Village Middle School.
"We have seen a district that was in sound financial shape -- or at least we were led to believe it was in sound financial shape last December -- and now we're inches away from being taken over by the state," Davis said. She believes the district's fiscal problems were brought on by unchecked spending proposed by Hiscox.
Waiting to hear the board's decision "is our civic responsibility," added Clair Glove, the mother of three and an 18-year resident of Canfield. "We're not necessarily all here hoping for the same outcome," she said. "We're just all concerned."
Glove's two daughters graduated from Canfield. Her son is in eighth grade at Canfield Village Middle School. She also sent three other students to Canfield schools -- exchange students who lived with her family.
Glove works as a special-education aide in Canfield's elementary schools.
Shara Simone, a graduate of Canfield, moved back to the community eight months ago because she wanted to be in a good school district before her 2-year-old son enters kindergarten, she said. Her husband is also Canfield High School's varsity soccer coach.
Adrianne Sturm has lived in Canfield four years and has two children attending Canfield Schools. One is in third grade, the other is in 10th.