The Neosho R-5 School Board has selected Alma Stipp, current assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction, to serve as superintendent of the district for a one-year term, effective July 1.


The Neosho R-5 School Board has selected Alma Stipp, current assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction, to serve as superintendent of the district for a one-year term, effective July 1.

Brett Day, Neosho school board president, said the board approved Stipp’s hire Friday afternoon in executive session. The vote was 6-0, with Chris Parks, board vice president, absent from the meeting.

Stipp will take over for current superintendent Dr. Richard Page, who announced in April he had accepted a superintendent position in the Gravette, Ark., school district.

“She has the full support of the board,” Day said. “She has 27 years of experience in this district.”

Stipp had announced her retirement from the position of assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction earlier this spring.

She has spent the entire span of her education career in the Neosho R-5 School District, starting at Goodman Elementary School in 1985, where she taught remedial math, second, fifth, and sixth grades. After nine years she moved to Central Elementary, where she spent three years as a third grade teacher. When the Central Elementary School principal Ken Barnes retired in 1994, Stipp moved up to fill the position, beginning her career in school administration.

While serving as principal at Central Elementary, she also went back to school to complete a specialist degree in educational administration with an emphasis in superintendency. She left Central in 2006, when she began her current role in the district's administration.

“Alma is the personification of our character program,” Day said. “We are very pleased to have her for the next year.”

Day said the board plans to do a search for a new superintendent beginning in the fall, with that new hire taking over the position in July 2013.

In a special board meeting held Friday afternoon, Day emphasized the importance of the superintendent search.

“In my opinion what we do as far as the superintendent goes, is going to be the most important decision this board makes and my feeling is I don’t want to rush the decision,” Day said. “It’s my opinion that we should use a professional search service.”

He expressed his desire to conduct the search via the Missouri School Board Association, and said he would like to include them in an upcoming board meeting, where they can present publicly the superintendent search process.

“This has to be a home-run decision,” Day said. “I can’t put enough emphasis on that.”

In an executive session Thursday evening, board members selected Glenda Condict, current Benton Elementary School principal, to fill Stipp’s assistant superintendent position.

The district has found two individuals to fill the assistant superintendent of business and finance position, formerly held by Dr. Jim Cummins, who left last fall to take the position of vice president of finance at Crowder College.

Since Cummins’ departure Rick Cook has filled the position as an interim and was due to leave the district this summer.

However, the position has gotten a name change, and two people will take over the duties of the position beginning in July.

In the same executive session Friday in which board members selected Stipp, they also voted 6-0 to keep Cook on board for one more year in the role of financial adviser.

Before joining the Neosho R-5 school district, Cook had previously served as superintendent of the Seneca R-7 school district.

The district also hired Tim Crawley, current superintendent of the Taneyville R-2 school district, to serve as the newly named director of operations. Crawley said he was hired in March, and will begin his duties in July.