The Montana School Board Association will run focus groups on March 19 at the Ennis schools as part of their effort to gather community input into the Ennis School Board’s search for a new superintendent.
The focus groups during the day will include staff and students. A community focus group will be held at 5:30 p.m. at the cafeteria in the new school, which has been recently equipped with acoustic tiles to help with sound quality.
The Ennis School Board hired the MSBA to conduct a search for a superintendent to replace Doug Walsh, who is retiring in June. The board requested that the search include outreach to the community and staff, said Joe Brott, director of policy services with the MSBA.
The focus groups will address these questions specifically: What are some of the good things taking place in the Ennis Schools today that you would like to preserve into the future? What challenges do you see for the Ennis School District over the next five to ten years? Will changes be necessary to address these challenges? In light of the good things you would like to preserve and the challenges ahead, what qualities and characteristics do you think an individual should have to be successful as the superintendent in Ennis?
The idea will be to get people to talk about the future and needs of the school district, Brott said.
“We don’t want them to dwell on the past and we do that with every school district,” he said.
MSBA representatives will run the groups and people will be asked to voice their comments as well as fill out questionnaires with the same questions. The results of the focus groups will be presented to the school board on April 3, prior to its review of superintendent candidate applications, Brott said.
The student focus groups will be done in the early afternoon March 19 and the staff will do their focus groups after school is out, said Ennis K-8 principle Brian Hilton.
People can also complete an electronic survey online here.