Gateway schools to start interviewing superintendent finalists

  • Gateway Regional High School

Staff Writer
Published: 3/22/2021 4:29:17 PM

HUNTINGTON — The Gateway Regional School District is starting the interview process for its superintendent finalists this Wednesday, with in-person meetings with the candidates that will be broadcast to the public.

Two of the four finalists — Kurt Garivaltis, pupil services director at Gateway, and Gina Flanagan, East Longmeadow High School principal — will be interviewed this Wednesday. The two other finalists — Kristen Smidy, Hampshire Regional High School principal, and William Bazyk, Battenkill Valley Supervisory Union superintendent in Arlington, Vermont — will be interviewed the following Wednesday, March 31.

“We’re all definitely excited to finalize the process,” said School Committee member Jason Forgue, who chaired the Superintendent Search Subcommittee.

The four finalists were selected from 22 applications and eight semifinalists.

The interviews will be conducted in the Gateway Regional High School auditorium. Each candidate will be standing at least 20 feet away from the committee members, who will be spaced more than 6 feet apart.

“It’ll just be us and the candidates,” said Forgue, noting that committee members felt it was important to hold in-person interviews.

“A lot of us come from business backgrounds,” he said. “You just can’t substitute face-to-face interaction.”

While speaking, the candidate will be able to remove their masks, although Forgue said that the expectation is that everyone else will keep their masks on.

The meetings will be broadcast over Zoom, the links to which can be found at

Forgue said that this mimics the forums the candidates have had with teachers.

The candidates have done forums with teachers, parents and town officials and Forgue said that the most common areas for questions have been the atmosphere between faculty and staff, student retention and budgets.

Forgue said that a decision on which candidate to pick could be made as soon as next week, and that after the second round of interviews the committee will discuss the timing of their decision. He also said that anyone who wishes to add additional input in the process can do so by reaching out to a School Committee member.

Whoever is chosen will replace Superintendent David Hopson, who is serving in his 18th year in the position and will retire this summer.

Bera Dunau can be reached at

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