Fairborn chooses interim superintendent

Longtime Centerville educator appointed to lead district through this school year

Terry Riley has been appointed as the interim superintendent for Fairborn City Schools.

Riley, a former associate superintendent at Centerville City Schools, was unanimously approved by the school board at Thursday night’s meeting.

Riley will be paid $485 per day — up to 221 days — on an as-needed basis through July 31, 2016, according to Fairborn treasurer Nicole Marshall. He started his duties Friday morning.

“He has lots of energy, and he’s very knowledgeable about buildings, curriculum, human resources, negotiations,” school board president Tess Little said. “He’ll be very, very good for the district. He has a wealth of experience.”

It was announced last week that Superintendent Dave Scarberry has taken a leave of absence and will not return to work.

Riley, 64, was one of four people interviewed for the interim superintendent position by the school board Wednesday night. Others interviewed were Jay Arbaugh, Michael Nutter and Warren Scholler.

“Fairborn has good administrators, good board members, good teachers who all want the same thing,” Riley said. “They want a good experience for our kids in Fairborn.”

Riley spent 38 years at Centerville City Schools before retiring in 2010. He most recently was the director of the Miami Valley Tech Prep Consortium at Sinclair Community College from 2012-14.

“I feel I’m prepared to do it, and I’ll bring a different perspective that may have value to the district,” Riley said. “My appreciation for teachers and learning will go a long way to students being successful in Fairborn.”

Riley — who lives in Washington Twp. with his wife Francine — said at this point, he’s “looking at this job as an interim position.”

“We wanted to bring someone in who would not be politicking or jockeying for that (permanent) job,” Little said. “We just needed to have a fresh vision for Fairborn.”

Scarberry — Fairborn’s superintendent since January 2003 — stepped aside due to health reasons and is using medical leave and vacation days, school officials have said. His current annual salary is $125,085.

Ed Gibbons, the district’s director of business affairs and classified personnel, had been serving as acting superintendent.

In May, the school board unanimously voted to accept Scarberry’s resignation, effective at the end of his current five-year contract, July 31, 2016. At the time, Scarberry said he planned to stay through the end of his contract.

On Thursday night, the school board accepted Scarberry’s resignation as superintendent and reassigned him in the district, giving him the title of assistant superintendent.

Scarberry will remain in that role until Feb. 9, 2016, when his medical leave and vacation days run out. His departure from the district at that time will save Fairborn $71,314 since it will not be paying him through the end of his contract, Marshall said.

The school board will begin its search for a new superintendent later this year, with the goal of having a new district leader start Aug. 1, 2016. The board approved a contract Thursday night with K-12 Consultants to help with the search.

The district is pursuing new school buildings with assistance from the state, and a bond levy is expected to be on the ballot in November 2016. Also, three board seats are up Nov. 3, and five candidates will be on the ballot.

A community forum is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday in the Baker Middle School auditorium.

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