The two finalists up for the new superintendent position at the newly merged Central Valley School District in the Valley both have some controversy surrounding previous school districts they worked for.

Frank Ferraro, formerly of the Kearny School District in New Jersey and Richard Hughes who currently works as superintendent for the Otselic Valley School District have been announced as finalists for the position.  The two administrators were introduced to the community at a public introduction on Wednesday night. About 35 community members attended the board of education meeting and both candidates answered questions publicly.

One person who attended the meeting, told WIBX that the topic of their administrative leave came up during the question and answer period.

Frank Ferraro, Kearny, New Jersey

Frank Ferraro was on involuntary administrative leave at the Kearny School District in New Jersey earlier this year.  The board of education there actually paid $5000 to a private detective to look into Hughes qualifications, according to The Observer. The newspaper reported that some board members also questioned his hiring practices.  Another board member supported Ferraro and told the newspaper his removal was "totally illegal” and based purely on “politics.”

“You stopped every single action [proposed by Ferraro] because it wasn’t the person you wanted,” Kearny board member John Leadbeater told The Observer. “… Because you don’t like the way he doesn’t do business, the way you expect it to be done, you want to run him out of town,” he told the newspaper.

Richard Hughes, South Otselic Valley

Richard Huges is currently the superintendent of schools at the Otselic Valley Central School District and he faced adversity back in 2010 when he served as the Delhi School District's high school principal.  

Parents started a Facebook group with over 300 members asking for the board to dismiss Hughes because they say he was too hard on the students.  The Watershed Post online said parents were charging that Hughes was running the school 'like a police state."  Soon after, Hughes took a new job as superintendent at the Otselic Valley School District, where he's been employed since 2010.

WIBX contacted school board members who referred us to BOE president, Steve Coupe, who was unavailable for comment.

According to a news release, both Hughes and Ferraro spent the day touring the district and meeting with school, student and community panels prior to Wednesday night's meeting.

The school board will meet on Tuesday to discuss both candidates.  Their plan is to name the new superintendent by November 3rd.