The Adrian School District sign. (The Enterprise/Rachel Parsons)

ADRIAN – The application window for a new superintendent in Adrian has closed, with three people applying. 

The post of superintendent opened up in late August when the Adrian School Board fired Superintendent Kevin Purnell because he wouldn’t flout the governor’s mask mandate. Since then, three complaints about masking triggered an investigation of the district by the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which is ongoing.

Mark Redmond, superintendent of the Malheur Education Service District and interim superintendent at Adrian, said the three candidates were local to Malheur County. 

“Considering the time of year, and most potential candidates being currently employed and tied to a 60-day opt-out clause, I believe to have three applicants that can step in immediately is actually fairly reasonable,” he said.

Normally, the process to hire a new superintendent would begin in January and take about two months, often under the management of a search agency. That would have left time for a community forum and for board members to tour the applicants’ home districts as part of the interview process.

However, Redmond said that the circumstance of needing a new superintendent mid-year was forcing Adrian to expedite the hiring process. 

“We will have interviews for the three candidates, possible second interviews following that, and ultimate approval by the board,” Redmond said. “The initial interview committee is composed of two board members, four staff members, four community members, and myself.” 

News tip? Contact reporter Liliana Frankel at [email protected] or 267-981-5577. 

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