Bradley Bourbonnais Community High School.

BRADLEY — A consulting firm has been selected to assist in the search process to hire a new superintendent at Bradley-Bourbonnais Community High School District 307, with the plan to name that person in six weeks.

Superintendent Scott Wakeley, who has been with BBCHS the past eight years, is set to take over as co-superintendent for Homewood-Flossmoor High School July 1 and officially become the high school’s only superintendent the following school year.

H-F made its decision just last month.

“This has been the joy of a lifetime to be here,” Wakeley said. “It’s not lost on me the terrific place this has been. Two out of my three kids graduated from here, and BBCHS has changed their lives.”

After hearing from three different consulting firms via Zoom interviews during Monday’s meeting, the BBCHS School Board approved the hiring of BWP & Associates, an educational leadership search firm based in Libertyville. The other choices included HYA & Associates and GRRecruiting. All three were in the same price range.

Services from BWP & Associates will cost $16,500. Among the firm’s services are background checks of candidates, assistance through the interview and negotiation processes, and one year of mentoring for the new superintendent as well as the board.

The job posting can be found on the firm’s website and indicates that the process will be a rolling search, with applications screened as they are received until the position is filled, and interviews are expected to be held the first week of May. The right candidate will be a “longterm, career focused educational leader,” the posting states.

David Williams, president of the Bradley-Bourbonnais Education Association, said that the teachers union wants to have a good, working relationship with the new superintendent.

“We know this is the school board’s decision, ultimately, but we just would like to be a part of that [search] process in some way, shape or form,” he said.

Board President Justin Caldwell said the board “absolutely” wants teachers to be part of the process.

BWP & Associates presented a six-week timeline with the goal to have the BBCHS board select the new superintendent by around June 1. That person would have a July 1 start date.

The timeline includes starting to recruit candidates as quickly as possible, seeking input from board members and constituents, and creating a “leadership profile” to help in evaluating candidates. Internal candidates would be invited to participate in the same application process.

The firm will narrow down the list to eight to 10 candidates before presenting the best four to six candidates to the board.

The board will then select two or three finalists from that group to bring back for a final round of interviews, which will take place from May 17 to 25.

Firm representatives acknowledged the shortened timeline was “aggressive, but very doable.”

In the event the board does not find a suitable candidate from this search, the firm also provides services to help identify an interim superintendent at no extra cost.

“If we don’t find a candidate that is suitable for the district, then we want to have a plan for an interim superintendent,” Caldwell said.


Stephanie Markham joined the Daily Journal in February 2020 as the education reporter. She focuses on school boards as well as happenings and trends in local schools. She earned her B.A. in journalism from Eastern Illinois University.