Two Shikellamy school directors want to meet girls basketball coach applicants

May 17—SUNBURY — Two Shikellamy School District directors say candidates for the open varsity girls basketball coach position are more than qualified, and their no vote Tuesday night on hiring a coach was directed at the hiring process, not any person.

On Tuesday, by a 4-3 vote, the board rejected a candidate recommended by the hiring committee. Directors Julie Brosius and Joe Stutzman said Rachel Herb is highly qualified from what they have been told and they would have loved the chance to meet her, but they were not informed about the interviews.

Board members, Brosius and Stutzman, along with directors Jenna Eister-Whitaker and Tom Webb voted against the hiring because of the process — not the candidate, they said.

"Any viable candidate for a position should be considered and the board should be a part of all aspects of the interview process," Brosius said Thursday. "Those same candidates should not be subjected to any public disparaging flack as they are not at fault in any way. The failure lies with the interview process or the lack thereof, by the school board."

Brosius and Stutzman said all the candidates should reapply and she would be thrilled to meet them.

"I had no involvement in the interview process of any candidates for any of the positions looking to be filled," Stutzman said. "As a representative of the public, I can't with good conscience recommend anyone until I meet them. I would ask that the people of this school district do not think this was against any of the candidates. This is a process issue and all we want to do is be involved."

All four directors said they hope interviews are scheduled as quickly as possible and they look forward to meeting whoever applies. The four directors said they would have no issue choosing the most qualified for the position and if they were part of the interview process they would listen to the recommendation of the committee before they voted.

All four directors said in no way do they want to hold up the process or hurt the girls basketball program, but instead want the other board members to know they are also elected and should be included in the decision-making and not just expected to vote without any knowledge.

The directors said they were not made aware of any names being brought forward until it was placed on the agenda and were surprised to learn they would be voting on the position and salary without getting any notice.

Stutzman and Brosius said they still have not been informed of what will come next in the process by Superintendent Jason Bendle. Bendle has not responded to the newspaper's request for comment on the next step for the district in getting the position filled.

Longtime girls basketball coach Lew Dellegrotti retired at the end of last season.