NORWALK, Conn. – The Norwalk chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is lobbying for more input into the city's search for a new superintendent of schools.
A 10-member search committee was created by Board of Education Chair Michael Lyons last month, and the group will begin holding public meetings around the city next week to gather input from residents on the selection of a new superintendent.
The NAACP Tuesday urged the Board of Education to add a member of its group to the committee, even though board member Rosa Murray, who is also a member of the NAACP, is on the search committee.
Local attorney Darnell Crosland, president of the Norwalk Branch of the NAACP, praised Lyons and the board for taking a proactive approach to the selection process, but made clear that it would like its voice heard.
“We are also of the position that the superintendent must be effective and he or she must be able to move this district from a district in need of improvement, to a district that stands as a model for other districts,” said Crosland in a statement. “In order for this to happen, the superintendent must have the support of the community. Laying a strong foundation for success during the selection process is vital and foundational support begins by allowing the community to be a part of the selection process.”
Lyons has resisted increasing the search committee above 10 members because he said it could become unwieldy, but he assured Crosland and others that the NAACP will be an important part of the process.
Seven meetings will be held this month to gather input from residents about what they are looking for in a superintendent, and one of those meetings, on Feb. 21, will be specifically for the NAACP. The meeting will be held at Grace Baptist Church, 17 West Ave., at 7 p.m.