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Ross Kasun, one of three candidates being considered for Montclair’s superintendent position, speaks during a candidates’ forum at Montclair High School in February. ERIN ROLL/STAFF

By ERIN ROLL
roll@montclairlocal.news

It may be down to two people in the Montclair superintendent race.

On Tuesday, it was reported that Ross Kasun, one of the three candidates, had withdrawn from consideration for the post in February.

Kasun confirmed to Montclair Local that he had withdrawn. When asked why, he said that he had decided to stay in his current position, but did not offer specific details.

Kasun currently serves as the superintendent in Freehold Township. Prior to that, he had served in different administrative capacities in Colts Neck, Summit, Milburn and South Orange-Maplewood.

The other two candidates are Rachel Goldberg, the assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction in Passaic, and Kendra Johnson, Montclair’s assistant superintendent for equity, curriculum and instruction.

Kasun was also reported to be one of six candidates seeking a superintendent position in Billings, Montana, according to media coverage of that city’s superintendent search. On Tuesday, he was announced as one of the three finalists, according to local media coverage. The search firm Hazard, Young, Attea and Associates is overseeing the candidate searches in both Montclair and Billings, according to the firm’s website.

BOE President Laura Hertzog said Tuesday that she was not authorized to comment on personnel-related matters.

Montclair held a forum in February to introduce the three candidates to the school community.

In March, Montclair Mayor Robert Jackson said that he preferred that the board of education choose someone who had previous superintendent experience. Kasun is the only one of the three candidates to have that level of experience.

Business Administrator Emidio D’Andrea could not be immediately reached for comment on the matter on Tuesday.

Montclair board members said they hope to have a new superintendent chosen in time for start date of July 1, the first official day of the 2018-2019 school year.

Montclair has been without a permanent superintendent since the departure of Penny MacCormack in 2015. Since then, the district has had two interims – former interim Ron Bolandi and current Interim Superintendent Barbara Pinsak.

The district has not specified what effect Kasun’s withdrawal, if any, would have on the superintendent race.

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