Phillips chosen as next BCSC superintendent

Chad Phillips. Photo courtesy of BCSC

Note: This story has been updated

Bartholomew Consolidated Schools have chosen their next superintendent, Dr. Chad Phillips.

Phillips appointment will be pending a public hearing and board approval later this month.

Current Superintendent Dr. Jim Roberts is stepping down at the end of June to take on a new role with the Community Education Coalition.

Phillips has been serving as the school district’s assistant superintendent of financial services for the past 7 years and has been with the school district for 20 years. Previously he has served BCSC in roles ranging from principal of CSA Lincoln Elementary to assistant principal at Central Middle School and Social Studies Department Chair at Columbus North High School.

He is a graduate of both Indiana University and Purdue University. He also served in the U.S. Marines Corps and worked in Lebanon as a teacher.

Phillips is married to Nichole, she is the Assistant Chief Probation Officer for Juvenile Services in Bartholomew County. They have four children.

The school board will hold a public meeting at 5 p.m. on Monday to hear public comments on the proposed contract with Phillips. That meeting will be at the administration offices at Central Avenue. The school board is scheduled to consider a vote on the appointment at the board meeting on April 29th at 6:30 p.m. at Columbus North High School.

Original BCSC Press release below

(April 9, 2024, Columbus, Indiana) After careful consideration and a thorough interview process, the Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation’s (BCSC) School Board of Trustees are pleased to name Dr. Chad Phillips as their selection for BCSC’s new superintendent starting July 1, pending a public hearing on April 15 and board approval on April 29.

In mid-January, current BCSC Superintendent Dr. Jim Roberts announced that he would be retiring from his position at the end of June to pursue a new opportunity as Vice President of the Community Education Coalition here in Columbus, Indiana.

After receiving the news from Roberts, the Board of Trustees opened its search for a new superintendent and worked with the University Search Team, a superintendent search group that assists public school districts in finding new leadership. Throughout the process, the Board of Trustees used valuable input from a wide audience to guide their work. This included a community stakeholder survey sent to families, staff members, and community members throughout Bartholomew County. The Board also invited administrators and Columbus Educators Association (CEA) representatives to be a part of the process of selecting the best candidate for BCSC.

“CEA appreciates being able to give input to the BCSC School Board regarding their decision process for choosing the next BCSC Superintendent. We received valuable feedback from our members and were able to ask candidates questions based on that feedback. CEA looks forward to collaborating with Dr. Phillips,” CEA President Amy London said.

After collecting input from the community and interviewing qualified candidates, the Board came to an agreement that proposing the current Assistant Superintendent of Financial Services was the right next step in their search for a new Superintendent.

“The Board completed a thorough and collaborative process in the search for its next superintendent. We started by canvassing the community and teachers understanding the needs of the school system in its readiness to deliver a next-level education experience. During the process, teachers, administrators, and Board members thoughtfully reviewed the candidates and have chosen Dr. Chad Phillips. He is a leader within BCSC and this community is ready to deliver upon BCSC’s vision of being THE choice of education in Bartholomew County” BCSC School Board member Logan Schulz said.

Dr. Chad Phillips is completing his 20th year in BCSC, serving the past seven years as the Assistant Superintendent for Finance. Dr. Phillips manages BCSC’s $150M annual budget that includes operating referendum funds used to improve staff retention and student safety and security. He has been key to the creation of a district-wide facility renovation plan that includes construction of a new elementary school, all without increasing the property tax rate.

“Dr. Phillips is a very thoughtful man and he considers everyone’s input and needs. Our kids will see incredible benefits because he is committed to all of the youth work in our community. I’m very glad to know we’ll be able to continue the close partnership we have with the BCSC team,” Foundation for Youth Director Chuck Kime said.

Before moving to the administration building, Dr. Phillips spent six years as principal of CSA Lincoln Elementary, where the school went from an “F” performance grade in 2010 to consecutive “A’s” in 2014 and 2015. Phillips has also served as an assistant principal at Central Middle School and Social Studies Department Chair at Columbus North High School.

“Our BCSC School Board has once again chosen leadership who believes in the vision of the community to be the best place to learn and grow. Since Dr. Phillips has been an integral part of present and future BCSC endeavors, the transition should prove to be seamless. I feel confident knowing that the board has made the decision to hire a knowledgeable leader to further our advancement in making BCSC the best choice,” Central Middle School teacher and 2024 Edna V. Folger Outstanding Teacher recipient Mindy Summers said.

A graduate of both Purdue University and Indiana University, Dr. Phillips is married to Nichole, who is the Assistant Chief Probation Officer for Juvenile Services in Bartholomew County. They have four children, Emmy Frederick, Mason and Collin Phillips (all proud BCSC graduates), and Ethan Hall (junior at Columbus East High School). Prior to his contributions at BCSC, Dr. Phillips taught social studies at Lebanon Senior High School, managed overnight shifts at the Kirby Risk Service Center in Lafayette, and served in the United States Marine Corps.

“Having had the opportunity to work alongside Dr. Phillips, I have witnessed firsthand his dedication and commitment as a parent, friend and educator. I know he will serve all of BCSC with his knowledge, skills and passion. In this role, I know he will help lead, guide and positively impact, not only the BCSC community, but the Columbus community and beyond,” former BCSF Executive Director and CSA Lincoln parent Suzi Bruin said.

The Board of School Trustees of the Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation will hold a public meeting on April 15, 2024, at 5:00 p.m. in the Terrace Room at the Administration Building, 1200 Central Avenue, Columbus, Indiana, to discuss and hear public comments including objections to and support for the proposed contract between the Board and the candidate for superintendent. The Board will vote on the appointment of the new Superintendent at the regular meeting on April 29, 2024, at 6:30 p.m. at Columbus North High School.