News 12 speaks with top 3 superintendent candidates

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AUGUSTA, GA -- Richmond County's Superintendent search is now down to three. All are from out of town and two of the candidates are women.

News 12 spoke to each of the candidates by phone to find out why they want to be the next Superintendent of Richmond County Schools.

Dr. Dana Bedden is currently the Superintendent of Schools in the William Penn School District in Pennsylvania. He's been there for two years and he says during his short time there, he has turned the district around.

Before his tenure the district had never made AYP and now they do.

He told us why he's the best candidate for the job. " I believe education is a civil rights issue. It is a great equalizer and when everyone has an education, it means everyone has an opportunity to be successful."

Dr. Shirley Carraway is also a Superintendent for Orange County Public Schools in Hillsborough, North Carolina. She's been there four years and says she's ready to make the move to Augusta. "From what I’ve read and the information we have about the school district, I think I would be able to help the school district in continuing it's quest for excellence."

Dr. Susan Clark is an Assistant Superintendent in McDonough, Georgia. She's also been on the job there four years and she's the only one of the three who isn't already a Superintendent. However, she says she knows Georgia schools and knows what it will take to fix them. "Everybody in the state of Georgia is struggling with mathematics and Richmond County is no exception. It's more about working on instruction and the kind of instruction that takes place in the classroom."

All three candidates agree on some things: they love Augusta and want to move their families here. All three also agree community involvement is key and say they'd work on improving communication between the school district and the board.

The school board is wasting no time bringing these candidates in for a second interview. Dr. Bedden and Dr. Carraway will be down next week for their second sit down with the board. Dr. Clark is scheduled for her second interview the following week.

One big topic will of course be salary. Dr. Bedden is the highest paid candidate at $170,000 annually. Dr. Shirly Carraway makes $149,000 annually. Dr. Susan Clark who is an Assistant Superintendent makes $114,000 yearly.

To listen to our full interviews with the three candidates, click here.

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