By all appearances, Kent Paredes Scribner is the right person at the right time to be the next Fort Worth school superintendent.
Trustees are set to take a formal vote, likely unanimous, to hire Scribner at their board meeting Tuesday night. It’s the right thing to do, with one unfortunate flaw.
Board President Jacinto Ramos Jr., the board’s public spokesman during the hiring process, has declined to make public the terms of Scribner’s contract until after the formal vote to accept it.
There will be no opportunity for public feedback on those terms before trustees bind the district to them.
It’s a shame Ramos and the board have determined to abandon openness and transparency at this final stage of the hiring process.
It would have cost them nothing to release key terms — salary and benefits, if nothing else — and to give their constituents a chance to speak up before the vote.
That would have strengthened their own show of confidence in Paredes and his contract. Instead, they will only listen afterward, with a legally bound deaf ear.
That’s an opportunity lost for trustees who have been trying to turn the final corner in what has been a rocky superintendent selection process.
Fort Worth school board meeting: 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, 2903 Shotts St.
The difficulties started last year when it became apparent that a majority of trustees did not see eye-to-eye with then-Superintendent Walter Dansby. A year ago in June, the veteran Fort Worth administrator abruptly resigned.
The bright spot since then has been Pat Linares, hired as interim superintendent shortly after Dansby left. Originally scheduled as a short-term replacement with a six-month contract, Linares was a former deputy superintendent in the district who had retired and said she was not interested in the top job long-term.
She has run the district well much longer than expected, and for that the trustees are in her debt.
The first attempt to hire a new superintendent was aborted early this year when Joel Boyd, the superintendent in Santa Fe, N.M., who was named the lone finalist for the Fort Worth job, withdrew after some trustees doubted his qualifications.
The search restart languished until after the May 9 board elections. On Aug. 12, the board selected Scribner, 49, superintendent of Arizona’s Phoenix Union High School District.
Scribner has been a high-energy aspirant, participating confidently in news media interviews, joining the convocation for teachers and other district employees before the start of the new school year and greeting students and parents at Diamond Hill Elementary on the first day of class.