After three years as superintendent of Coeur d’Alene Schools, Steven Cook will leave at the end of the school year to take the same position in Bend, Oregon.
Cook was selected Tuesday night during a meeting of the Bend-La Pine School Board. He will remain in his current position through June.
The Board of Trustees for Coeur d’Alene Public Schools will meet in the coming weeks to establish a process and timeline for selecting a new superintendent, chair Jennifer Brumley said.
However, Brumley said Wednesday afternoon that the board hopes to name a replacement by mid-April.
Also Wednesday, the board considered six executive search firms and decided to invite two of them to meet with the board before making a final selection.
They are Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates of Schaumburg, Illinois, and Human Capital Enterprises of Washington, D.C.
In the meantime, Cook said his focus “remains on the students and employees of Coeur d’Alene Public Schools as we continue to implement significant improvements.”
Cook said he was proud of the district’s recent efforts to craft a long-range facilities plan, enhance safety, update attendance zones and launch the online eSchool for all grades.
“I’m proud of what our staff, students and community have accomplished together, and I’m encouraged by the momentum along this path toward ever-growing successes for our students,” Cook said.
Brumley also thanked Cook for his work.
“Especially over these past 10 months, as the district has confronted unprecedented challenges to operate through a pandemic, we appreciate the leadership Dr. Cook has demonstrated,” Brumley said.
Cook was named superintendent of Coeur d’Alene Public Schools almost three years ago. Previously he was deputy superintendent of the Douglas County School District in suburban Denver.
Cook’s last day on the job in Coeur d’Alene will be June 30.
Located in fast-growing Central Oregon, the Bend-La Pine district has 18,000 students – considerably larger than Coeur d’Alene’s 11,000.
“Among an exceptional pool of candidates from across our nation, Dr. Cook rose to the top,” board chair Carrie Douglass said after a unanimous vote.
“During this search process, which began more than a year ago, our community came together to identify four key competencies that they wanted to see in a next superintendent,” Douglass said. “Those values are what guided our rigorous selection process and we are thrilled to say Dr. Cook meets and exceeds all of the attributes we were looking for.”
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