4.27.12 -- I believe George Kazanas is a good pick as superintendent for Midway ISD, and I am pleased to see him come our way. He supports knowledge-based, academic education and wants all students to be well-prepared for college/university/workplace. From those who have taught under him, I have been told that Kazanas is fair minded, believes in good discipline, supports teachers, has a good rapport with students/parents, wants all students to receive a well-rounded education, and tries to avoid fixating on state accountability ratings. -- Donna Garner] http://www.wacotrib.com/news/149177495.html
Midway ISD board excited about new superintendent Kazanas
By CINDY V. CULP firstname.lastname@example.org
Friday April 27, 2012
Midway school board members on Thursday made no secret of how excited they are to have George Kazanas as the district’s new superintendent, handing him an ID tag and box of business cards just seconds after officially hiring him for the job.
Kazanas, a former China Spring Independent School District superintendent, was announced as the sole finalist for the Midway job earlier this month. State law requires school districts to wait at least 21 days after picking a finalist to extend a contract.
In a short speech after the meeting, Kazanas said he and his family are glad to return to Central Texas. He has been superintendent of the Wichita Falls Independent School District since 2009.
But, he grew up in West and served as China Spring superintendent for 10 years.
“This is home for me,” said Kazanas, who will start at Midway on June 1. “I’m ready to get to work and serve.”
The district hired a search firm to help fill the superintendent spot after Brad Lancaster left for the Lake Travis Independent School District in Austin. The firm brought in 30 applicants, with the board interviewing five.
School board president Peter Rusek said officials were impressed with Kazanas’ credentials and like that he doesn’t view the district as just a career stepping stone.
Rusek said they are confident the 44-year-old Kazanas has the skills needed to lead the district through challenging budget times and changes in student demographics.
Nearly 30 percent of Midway’s student body now is considered economically disadvantaged.
About 60 percent of Wichita Falls students are low-income. It has about 14,500 students, compared to about 7,100 at Midway.
Kazanas’ contract is for three years. He will be have an annual salary of $188,000, which is almost the exact amount Lancaster was paid.
“We had five top-notch finalists,” Rusek told the Midway community at Thursday’s meeting. “Any of them you would have been pleased to have as your superintendent. But this is our guy.”
Kazanas said part of the reason he decided to come to Midway is because of the strong community support the district enjoys. Taxpayers have voted in favor of bond issues for new facilities and the schools have great parent-teacher councils, he said.
“If you look at school districts across the state, Midway is always at the top of the list,” Kazanas said. “It’s a beacon of excellence.”
Also at Thursday’s meeting, the board named Herb Cox as the new principal of Midway Middle School. He has been the principal at McGregor High School for the past four years.