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          Front Page




5 APS Employees Seek Chief Position

By Zsombor Peter
Journal Staff Writer
    At least five Albuquerque Public Schools employees are vying for the district's top job.
    They include: Mike Bachicha, Sandia High School principal; Diego Gallegos, assistant superintendent for continuous improvement; Allan Holmquist, Chelwood Elementary School principal; Tom Ryan, executive director of technology; and Linda Sink, interim superintendent/associate superintendent for instruction.
    The district won't release an official list of applicants until March 1.
    Even then, it intends to conduct its deliberations about the finalists behind closed doors.
    All the application material the district has published included a deadline of Tuesday for applications. But according to the school board's deliberations last week, "deadline" meant postmark date.
    Because all applications might not have arrived by Tuesday, board President Paula Maes said, the district wants to wait for any potential stragglers before it releases the names.
    APS' 27-member search committee will meet earlier March 1 to whittle the names to an unspecified number of finalists.
    Once the committee convenes, district officials predict it will move behind closed doors to discuss personal details about the candidates, in line with the state's Open Meetings Act.
    The district has taken the extra step of having all search committee members sign confidentiality agreements.
    "At the point where someone says 'I know something terrible about this person, or I know something fabulous,' that's not going to be in the paper the next day or on the TV station," APS attorney Art Melendres told the board in January. "That was the goal."
    The finalists will gather in Albuquerque on March 7 to be screened by students, business and government leaders, APS employees and parents in a marathon of meetings. The board will meet the next day to choose the district's next superintendent.