JEFFERSON — Parents, students and other interested members of the School District of Jefferson community can weigh in on the three finalists for the Jefferson school superintendent position this week by accessing taped online interviews and submitting their input.
The pre-recorded interviews, with superintendent finalists Amy Vesperman, Dr. Charles Urness, and Dr. Peter Wilson, will be available via the School District of Jefferson website at sdoj.org.
Meanwhile, the school board is preparing to conduct in-person interviews with the final candidates during a closed session meeting tonight.
Following that final interview on Friday the board has set a special meeting to select the next superintendent.
Feedback submitted by members of the public who have viewed the taped interviews will be considered as one factor in the decision-making process.
The pre-recorded interviews will be available on the district website beginning at 8 a.m. Thursday. The interview links will remain open through 3:30 p.m. Friday.
To access the interview links, people may log on at https://www.sdoj.org/district/superintendent-search.cfm.
Community residents will also have the opportunity to take a survey for viewers to share feedback on the candidates, with the feedback to be shared with the school board at its Friday meeting.
These finalists are vying for the opportunity to replace Jefferson superintendent Mark Rollefson, who is retiring July 1.
District officials noted that the process started with 13 highly qualified individuals. There were no internal candidates for this position.
Vesperman currently serves as the superintendent of the Plum City School District.
She started her educational career in 1997 as a high school/middle school language arts teacher in Belmont. She also taught high school and middle school in Fall River, and Waterloo.
In 2002, she returned to Fall River to serve as a middle school teacher, athletic coach and curriculum coordinator.
Moving into administration, she took on the role as dean of students in Germantown, then moved on to become assistant principal in the Delavan-Darien district, next serving as the director of curriculum, instruction and assessment for the Wisconsin Heights district.
Vesperman took on the role of superintendent of the Albany school district in 2016 and two years later moved on to the Plum City School District, serving in the same capacity.
Vesperman’s educational background includes a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville and a master’s degree from Edgewood College in educational administration.
Wilson currently serves as director of administrative services for the DeForest Area School District.
He began his teaching career in 2002, overseeing a fifth-grade classroom in the Waunakee Community School District.
He moved into administration in 2008, becoming an assistant principal in the Stoughton Area School District. He also spent one year, in 2011-12, as an elementary school principal before that district named him its Director of Student Services.
In 2016, he joined the DeForest Area School District as the director of administrative services, the position in which he currently serves.
In terms of his educational background, Wilson earned his bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Mich. and his master’s and doctoral degrees in educational leadership from the University of Wisconsin- Madison.
The last finalist, Dr. Charles Urness, was added to the slate of interviews after another candidate, Dr. Jeffrey Fleig, dropped out.
Urness, principal of Franklin Middle School in the Janesville school district, has served in that role since 2010.
He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse in 1993, with majors in history and broadfield social studies.
In 2001, he received a master’s degree in Educational Leadership from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and in 2012, earned his Ph.D. in educational leadership and policy analysis, also from UW-Madison.