Michael McKie, interim superintendent of Fort Bend ISD, was announced May 1 as the lone finalist for the Hays CISD superintendent position. McKie is a former teacher who has spent more than 30 years in education.
The board plans to offer McKie a contract at its meeting May 23. McKie said he plans to start with Hays CISD on May 28.
What would you like your legacy to be at Fort Bend ISD?
Simply put: that I've made a difference in the lives of countless students and parents in the community. That people would think of me as someone who really cared about the children that we served and the community that I've lived in for many years and that it's a better place.
What was it that stuck out about the Hays CISD job to you?
When you think of the superintendent position, it's not just a job. It's a way of life. So when I look at Hays CISD, I look at a vibrant, growing community that is a wonderful place to live and work. I'm a part of this community, this family, and when we move up to Hays, I'm going to be part of that community. When I look at applying for a position, I'm not just applying for a job. It's a community. It's everything. It's a package deal. Most people want to work and live in a place that will be good for themselves and their family.
Was there anything about the school district specifically that stuck out to you?
Well I think the size of the school district was impressive. When you're looking at 16,000-plus [students], I think that's a perfect-size school district when you look at things you're able to accomplish versus working in a larger system like Fort Bend. It may be a little more difficult to navigate the district in a certain direction just because of the size and number of people who are in the organization. Of course the growth is very exciting to me as well. I've been in Fort Bend for a number of years, and I've seen our district grow and mature and almost double in size.
What is your plan to familiarize yourself with your new district?
I have a fairly detailed entry plan. I've shared a copy of that with the board. I'll be hitting the ground listening and learning. I'll be meeting with a variety of internal stakeholders. That's the senior leadership team, the board, other directors, coordinators, teachers, former teachers of the year, transportation [and] bus drivers. Likewise, on the community side, I'll be meeting with a variety of external stakeholders. The county commissioners, the mayors, those folks are very involved. Students are a part of that, too, especially high school students and middle school students; they're mature enough to sit down and talk to you and really get a feel for what they're thinking.
Does going from the seventh-largest district in the state to the sixth-fastest growing district change your job at all?
I don't think it changes my job at all. I've learned a great deal about systems and processes, so there are a variety of tools in my tool chest that I know I'm going to be able to use, and they'll obviously work to my advantage as far as moving from a large system to a smaller system, but I think the same skill set is required. I've been very fortunate to be in a large system, and I think I'll find that very valuable as I move into the smaller system.
When you came to Kyle for your in-person interview, did you get to look around town at all?
Well I've been through Kyle and Buda before, and my wife graduated from Southwest Texas [State University], so she knows the area very well. ... But this past Sunday (May 5), my wife, my son and I drove up and looked at the area to get a real lay of the land, we drove the entire school district and we drove over to the Salt Lick and had a good lunch.
What was the last book you read?
I've read a couple of books here lately, but right now I'm reading Patrick Lencioni's "The Advantage." It's about why organizational health trumps everything else in business.
What was the last movie you watched?
The last movie we saw at the movie theater was "Zero Dark Thirty."