Frank Rodriguez, one of the four educators in contention to be Palm Beach County’s next schools superintendent, withdrew his name from consideration just hours after being named a finalist.
Rodriguez, one of the school district’s five regional superintendents, applied for the position last week and was one of the four high-level administrators selected by the school board Wednesday night for in-depth interviews. Board members are expected to select a new superintendent on March 7.
The three remaining candidates are Deputy Superintendent David Christiansen, Chief Operating Officer Donald Fennoy and Chief Academic Officer Keith Oswald.
In an email this morning, Rodriguez notified the school board’s chairman that he was withdrawing from consideration “for family reasons.”
“I do appreciate the courtesy and consideration that has been extended to me throughout this process and wish you well in the selection of the next superintendent for our school district,” he wrote.
In an interview, Rodriguez said that he concluded after applying that the obligations of being superintendent would likely strain his ability to carry out his parenting duties.
“I know myself and I know when I go in for a role that I have to go all out,” he said. “Reflecting on it, I know I need time to make sure I’m a dad, too.”
Rodriguez, 47, started his career as a county teacher in 1993 before serving as an assistant principal and principal at several schools, including as principal of Olympic Heights High, and then rising to regional superintendent.
He also applied for the superintendent position in 2015 but was not selected as a finalist in that search, which ended with the hiring of Superintendent Robert Avossa.
In 2015, he was also a finalist to be superintendent of Indian River County’s public schools before withdrawing his name from consideration.
The school board began its search this month after Avossa surprised them by announcing that he would resign in June to take a job at a Palm Beach Gardens publishing company. In resigning, Avossa said the job took too much time away from his parenting duties to his two children.