And then there were three.
The Wayne County Board of Education named Vallerie Cave, Amy Denty and Sean Kelly as finalists for school superintendent Tuesday night.
Under state law, the Board must now wait at least two weeks before actually hiring a new superintendent. The Board has already announced a called meeting to discuss personnel in closed session for Thursday at 5 p.m.
Current superintendent Jay Brinson’s retirement will become effective April 1.
Cave currently serves the associate superintendent for K-12 school transformation in the Savannah Chatham County school system. She has previously served as the system’s executive director for K-12 transformation and innovation and, before that, as its executive director for elementary K-8 school governance. She has also served as a principal at the middle school and elementary school levels in the Glynn County school system.
In addition, she has served as the vice president of Edutone Corporation and as the director consulting services for Information Transport Solutions, both in Wetumpka, Alabama.
Cave holds a doctorate in curriculum and instruction and leadership from Walden University.
Denty currently serves as the assistant superintendent of teaching and learning for the Wayne County school system and as the Coastal Plains Charter High School mentor coordinator. She has worked in the Wayne County system for 24 years of her 31-year career in education.
She was the 2000 Georgia Teacher of the Year, a 1999 Milken National Educator Award recipient and a 1999 state winner of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Teaching. She is a former president of the Professional Association of Georgia Educators and was named by the magazine Georgia Trend to its list of “40 Outstanding Georgians Under 40.”
She is a doctoral candidate in curriculum and instruction from Valdosta State University.
Sean Kelly currently serves as the executive director of maintenance and operations for the Douglas County school system. He previously served as the system’s executive director of curriculum, instruction and assessment. His 28-year career in education includes stints as a high school principal in Douglasville and as a principal in Tallapoosa, and he has also coached various sports at different schools in Douglasville.
He was twice named as a finalist for State Principal of the Year.
He holds a doctorate in educational leadership for learning from the University of Georgia and Kennesaw State University.
More details about all three finalists have been posted on the school system’s website and Facebook page.
After the finalists were named Tuesday, Board Chair Nick Ellis said, “The Board has reviewed all applications submitted by the deadline on Dec. 20, 2020, to [the Georgia School Boards Association]. We narrowed this down to speak with over 13 individuals and invited seven individuals to come back for a second conversation and deeper discussion about their experience and vision for our school district if selected to be our superintendent.
“Over the last two weeks, I must say I’m extremely proud of the time and commitment this board has put into this process and feel we have reached this level to notify our community.”
(For further coverage see the Feb. 17 print edition of The Press-Sentinel.)