It was no surprise when the Berkeley Township Board of Education voted to appoint James Roselli as the district's next superintendent at a special meeting on Monday night.
And it was even more obvious that Central Regional Schools Superintendent - who had offered to assume the duties for free - never had a chance.
and some members of the school board had been grooming Roselli for months to take over the district. They appointed him acting director of the district's special services in January. Roselli had been principal of the Berkeley Township Elementary School prior to that.
Board President Steven J. Pellecchia gave a not-so-subtle hint of what he thought of Parlapanides back in April. His remarks came shortly after the board spent $6,500 to hire the consulting firm Leadership Advantage to begin a search for a permanent superintendent.
in terms of test scores compared to the Berkeley school district.
"That's not what the board wants," Pellechia said. "Our board wants a superintendent that will maintain the reputation we have. In my heart, I really feel he's not qualified, even with a doctorate."
Pellecchia did not return repeated calls for comment for this story.
Vicari announced at the April 19 board meeting that he had spoken with Parlapanides earlier that day and that Parlapanides was not interested in assuming superintendent duties for both districts.
That came as news to Parlapanides.
He said on April 20 he was very much interested in taking over Berkeley as well and wanted to apply for the position. He denied telling Vicari he wasn't interested and said he wouldn't ask for additional money for Berkeley duties.
"I'm shocked he would stoop to the level of calling my superintendent a liar," Pellechia said then.
Parlapanides did not accuse Vicari of lying. He denied he told Vicari he was not interested in the position.
Pellecchia went on to say that Parlapanides could apply for the position and the board would consider his application.
Berkeley board members voted unanimously on April 19 to hire Richard Morasco of Leadership Advantage to conduct a superintendent search. Morasco said then that the average time to find a new superintendent is six months.
At Vicari's last board meeting before his departure, he cautioned against sharing administrative positions. had questioned why the board would pay someone $59,000 to oversee the school transportation department when Central Regional had offered to share a supervisor at a much lower cost.
Vicari called the term shared services "a buzzword."
"You need to be very careful with it," he said then.
popped up during the public portion of the meeting and said that consolidating administrative positions "doesn't always work that well."
"There's a lot of personal things you lose through shared services," Roselli said then.
The board voted unanimously at a meeting to approve Roselli as superintendent. His contract has to be approved by the Ocean County schools superintendent.
pledged to consolidate services during their successful campaigns for board seats in 2011.
So why did they opt to hire a superintendent rather than one who would do it for free?
The board's personnel and negotiations committee consists of board members Sophia Gringrich, Kowalewski and Pellecchia. Eight people applied for the position.The list was narrowed to six and then to the final three, said Gringrich, who chairs the personnel committee.
Board members were limited to candidates who were interviewed. That left out Parlapanides, who submitted an application and was never interviewed.
"The Central Regional superintendent was not considered by the board," Fulcomer said, speaking for himself. "You can't vote for somebody who is not interviewed."
Gingrich said the reasons why the board opted for a paid superintendent will be discussed at tonight's meeting, which gets underway at 6:30 p.m. at the Berkeley Township Elementary School on 10 Emory Avenue.
"We're going to make that announcement tonight," she said. "You'll have to wait until then."
Gingrich said she expected the board to formally vote on Roselli's appointment tonight.
Business Administrator/Board Secretary Laura J. Venter said copies of Roselli's resume and contract could be obtained through the state's Open Public Records Act. The contract cannot be released until it is approved by the board, she said.
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