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South Bend Schools Superintendent working without a valid license

SOUTH BEND, Ind.—  Leading without a valid license. South Bend Community School Corporation Superintendent Carole Schmidt admits someone dropped the ball when it came to making sure her paperwork was in order.

“Some of our top officials do not have the proper licenses,” said school board member Bill Sniadecki.

According to the Indiana Department of Education, Schmidt does not have a valid Superintendent’s license, something Sniadecki cannot believe slipped through the cracks.

She started as the interim Superintendent of South Bend School’s in June of 2011 and was hired for the position permanently in September of that year.

South Bend’s school board even hired a firm to double check her qualifications at that time.

“When we did this superintendent search we hired a firm for $60,000 plus and they were supposed to do all that research for us,” said Sniadecki.

Schmidt herself seemed just as shocked at the situation when she put out this statement today.

When I applied for the position as Interim Superintendent in 2011, I provided a copy of my Michigan administrator’s license, information about my previous teaching and administrative licenses, my work history, my scores on required examinations, and my educational background.
In June 2011, when I was selected to serve as Interim Superintendent, I made arrangements with administrative staff to process my application for a reciprocal license in Indiana. It was my understanding that my application had been processed and a reciprocal license had been issued.
Today it was brought to my attention that a reciprocal license was never issued and that there is no a record of the information I understood had been submitted to the Indiana Department of Education's Office of Educator Licensing being submitted.
This afternoon, I initiated the process for obtaining a reciprocal license. I have notified the Board of School Trustees about this issue and about the steps I have taken to secure a reciprocal license as quickly as possible.

According to the Michigan Department of Education, Dr. Schmidt does have a school administrative certificate that could be used in Indiana for up to a year as a reciprocal license; however the paperwork needed to verify the transfer was never filed.

Sniadecki says that transfer won’t be enough.

“Even if she gets this transfer, that still doesn’t qualify her as a licensed superintendent in Indiana,” said Sniadecki.

As of July first, a superintendent’s license will no longer be needed in Indiana. However Sniadecki says this does not take away from the fact that Dr. Schmidt has been working without the proper qualifications for the past two years.

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