- Associated Press - Sunday, March 30, 2014

MCCOMB, Miss. (AP) - The North Pike School District Board has narrowed the field to three candidates in its search for a new superintendent of schools.

The Enterprise-Journal reported (https://bit.ly/1hiaNPl) the board completed a second round of interviews this past week, and reduced the pool from six to three contenders.

The remaining candidates are Dennis Penton, Jay Smith and Janice Wilson.

Penton is a junior high school principal in the Biloxi Public School District and a former superintendent of the Pearl River County School District. Smith is interim superintendent of the North Pike School District. Wilson is assistant superintendent of the Biloxi Public School District.

“It’s going to be a tough decision,” board secretary Kevin Matthew said Wednesday after the cut was made.

The Biloxi district has an A rating from the Mississippi Department of Education, while both the North Pike and Pearl River County districts have a B rating.

The school board will meet Tuesday at the Southwest Mississippi Community College Workforce Training Center to hold a final round of interviews. The meeting is open to the public.

Matthew said the board will ask the candidates questions concerning curriculum, finances, the new Common Core standards and other issues.

The superintendent’s position became vacant after Ben Cox resigned in December 2013 to accept a job with the Brookhaven School District.

Matthew said the board hopes to have its new superintendent working by July 1.

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Information from: Enterprise-Journal, https://www.enterprise-journal.com

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