Superintendent/Principal: Dayville School District, Dayville Oregon

Notice of Open Administrative Position

Position Title:                                 Superintendent/Principal

Closing Date for Applications:     June 1, 2015, or until filled

Employment Begins:                     July 1, 2015

Message to Potential Candidates:

On April 27, I traveled from Pendleton to Dayville to meet with the Board of Education. It was a beautiful day and the scenery along the way was stupendous. Dayville itself captures the attention of travelers because of its setting and the attention that has been given to the community. While some Eastern Oregon towns are showing their age, Dayville has worked hard on its image and attractions.

The Board is proud of the school and what they are able to offer in terms of small classes and plenty of individual attention. In fact, Dayville is an attractive offering for families seeking a small school atmosphere. The Board is hoping to find a superintendent/principal for their 50 students who will provide strong leadership to the program, be a visible part of the life of the school and community, and who will consider staying awhile in order to provide continuity and stability.

Occasionally, when I get involved in these searches I find myself saying “I wish I were younger.” This is one of them. This is a beautiful little community nestled in a pristine valley offering the best in small town, rural values. And, it’s a great place to raise and educate children.

One of the unique things about this professional opportunity is the fact the district provides – rent-free – a four bedroom, two bath home. The superintendent/principal does pay for utilities, but that’s it.

~ George Murdock

About the Position & The District

The Dayville School District is seeking a superintendent/principal to begin work on July 1, 2015. The district serves 50 students and has a proposed 2015-2016 budget of just over $1.7 million. The school operates with a teaching staff of six. This year there is one teacher serving ten students in grades K-3 and another who serves 12 students in grades 4-6. The secondary school which includes 28 students, has four teachers. That, of course, could change slightly next year depending upon enrollment.

Athletically, the district combines almost all of its programs with Monument. The school is an important part of the community and the board is hopeful the new school leader will also become a leader in the community.

Staff include the superintendent/principal, a veteran deputy clerk, a veteran administrative assistant/testing coordinator, a maintenance/transportation staff member, six certified teachers including one head teacher, and six part-time classified employees.
Technology and special education services are provided by the Grant Education Service District headquartered in John Day.

About the Community

Dayville is 125 miles east of Bend, Oregon, in the John Day valley, at the confluence of the main stem of the John Day River with the South Fork John Day River. Main Street in Dayville is U.S. Route 26, lined with large cottonwood trees, a park and other attractions.

Picture Gorge, named for Native American pictographs painted on the canyon walls, is 6 miles northwest of Dayville at the intersection of Route 26 and Oregon Route 19. The Sheep Rock Unit of the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, including the Thomas Condon Paleontology Center and the James Cant Ranch Historic District and museum, are 2 miles north of Picture Gorge along Route 19.

To the East are the communities of Mt. Vernon and John Day.

The region is widely known as an outdoor paradise with ranching, big game hunting, fishing, hiking, camping, bird hunting, photography, rock hounding, and geological study readily available.

Challenges and Expectations

In outlining some of the things the board would like to see from a new superintendent in his/her first year include:

  • Providing strong leadership and management for all aspects of district operations 
  • Maintaining the district’s sound fiscal position 
  • Promoting an effective learning environment and high standards of student behavior 
  • A commitment to following through on board requests

Qualities and Qualifications

  • An understanding of the culture and dynamics of rural communities and an understanding of the values of a farming community
  • An open, collaborative leadership style with a willingness to listen but also self-confident and capable of making and standing behind hard decisions when necessary
  • The ability to develop a strong working relationship with the board based upon mutual trust and respect
  • A willingness to be highly-visible in the community, in the classrooms, and at school events
  • Experience in dealing with school facilities and a broad array of district operations
  • An interest in the improvement of instruction and assuring staff has the resources necessary to enhance classroom performance
  • Sound financial management skills, with the ability to effectively communicate fiscal issues to the board, staff, and community
  • A knowledge of state and federal guidelines
  • Experience in collective bargaining and the ability to implement evaluation procedures for teachers and staff under new state requirements
  • An interest in supporting technology as a tool for both academic instruction and district management
  • Integrity, honesty, and high ethical and moral standards are a must
  • A passion for student achievement, a heart for children, and the ability to be comfortable and interested in regular interaction with the students
  • Experience as a classroom teacher and as a principal is preferred

Application Procedures/Timelines/Compensation

The district is offering a contract in the $70-79,500 range including a generous benefits package.  The contract also includes a nice four-bedroom home with two bathrooms which is proved rent-free to the superintendent/principal. The contract length is negotiable but the district is anxious to maintain a long-term relationship.  Applications are due June 1,  2015 however the district retains the option of accepting applications until the position is filled.

Those interested in pursuing this position are urged to contact Northwest Leadership Associates through George Murdock at 541-278-4691 or at  Contacts may also be made with Dr. Dennis Ray at

Application Materials

A completed application packet should include: 

  • A letter of interest addressing the qualities, qualifications, and expectations outlined in this posting 
  • Resume including information about potential references 
  • Four letters of recommendation 
  • A completed application form

All Application Materials Should Be Sent to

George Murdock, Northwest Leadership Associates
191 NW Johns Lane
Pendleton, Oregon 97801

Candidates sending materials by anything other than the U. S. Postal Service are encouraged to contact the consultant in advance at 541-278-4691. Candidates are reminded that due to the short turn-around time, materials received in advance of the deadline can often receive a more comprehensive review.