Last Thursday, the school committee met to vote in favor of hiring Dr. Stephen Zrike as the next superintendent of the Wakefield School District.
At Monday's meeting, members found themselves discussing how much time to give him for contract negotiations - as well as how much time should be expected for Zrike to actually say whether he will accept the job.
Committee Chairman Tom Markham reported that on Monday night, New Bedford had decided to choose another candidate for its own superintendent, having also interviewed Zrike as a finalist.
"We are still waiting for Dr. Zrike to communicate in a formal manner with the Wakefield School Committee," said Markham. Zrike apparently did indicate to the Wakefield committee on Friday that he wanted to take time to consider his options in light of the then-pending decision by New Bedford.
In voting for Zrike on Thursday, the committee also set a March 22nd deadline for negotiating a contract with him.
Committee member Kevin Piskadlo, one of three members to initially vote for Dr. Kimberley Smith for superintendent last week, offered a motion to set a deadline for the end of business Thursday to initiate contract negotiations or have the offer withdrawn."He's made quite clear that this isn't necessarily a place he wants to be," said Piskadlo.
Markham seconded Piskadlo's motion, but did not support it because, as other board members on hand also noted, the March 22nd time frame had already been put in place with last Thursday's vote. "That was the date we set," said Janine Cook.
"We can just relax for a minute and not rush the process," said committee member Lisa Butler, noting that Zrike had found out about the New Bedford decision just the previous night.
"I think we all presumed he was going to accept it on Friday," said Markham.