Distirct is planning a Monday, March 19 event for the community to meet the candidates

CENTRAL OREGONIAN FILE PHOTO - The Crook County School District has narrowed its superintendent search down to two candidates.

The Crook County School District Board of Directors announced Monday evening that two finalists have been selected for further consideration to be the district's next superintendent, beginning July 1, 2018.

Superintendent Duane Yecha will finish his time in the district on June 30, 2018.

According to district officials, the board and a screening committee of staff and community thoroughly reviewed a strong applicant field of 26 candidates, and the board conducted initial interviews with several candidates before selecting finalists.

The two finalists are Sara E. Johnson and Dianda "Dandy" L. Stevens.

Since 2016, Johnson has been the Director of Assessment, Equity and School Improvement for the Klamath County School District in Klamath Falls with about 6,500 students. Before, she was superintendent for the Sumner School District in Sumner, Washington, with a student enrollment of about 9,500 for three years.

Other administrative experience includes three years as assistant superintendent at Lincoln County School District in Newport with 5,200 students. She was named Oregon Principal of the Year in 2007.

Johnson has a Doctorate Degree in educational leadership from George Fox University and a master's degree in teaching education from Eastern Oregon University.

For the past four years, Stevens, the second candidate, has been assistant superintendent at Silver Falls School District in Silverton, with about 3,900 students. At Silver Falls, she also served as middle school principal for three years.

Her teaching experience includes four years as a language arts teacher in high school and four years teaching overseas. She became a nationally board certified teacher in 2002.

Stevens has a master's degree in curriculum and instruction from Portland State University and a Bachelor of Science Degree in journalism from the University of Oregon.

The Crook County School Board will now begin thorough background and reference checks for these finalists.

While the background and reference checks are underway, the board will bring the finalists to the district for an opportunity to meet with staff and community on Monday, March 19. The exact times for meetings are not yet scheduled.

The board will also conduct a second interview with each finalist in executive session to finish the visit. The board expects to announce the next steps in the superintendent search soon.

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