BETHEL TWP. — The Bethel Local Schools Board of Education hired the district’s new superintendent Monday night.
The board approved a three-year contract for Justin Firks, the current superintendent of the Fort Recovery Local School District, and he will start his new job in Bethel in August.
Firks will replace Virginia Potter, who has served the school district as superintendent for the past five years.
The board also hired Firks to act as a consultant from April 8 until July 31, before his contract takes effect. His contract term is Aug. 1, 2019, through July 31, 2022, at a salary of $115,000.
“Justin consistently performed in the top two of all of the community reports that we had, so I’m very, very happy that he’s here with us,” board member Todd Wright said.
The board began a superintendent search in February, hiring K-12 Business Consulting, Inc., a superintendent search firm. The consultants developed a search profile based on community, staff and student input.
The board received 28 applications for the position, which were narrowed down to seven for meetings with community and staff members. Two finalists were invited to return on April 1 and 2 to meet with community and district staff ahead of a second interview with the board.
“We are extremely happy with the consulting company,” board President Jacob King said.
Firks has served the Fort Recovery Local School District as superintendent for the past four years. Previously, he was the junior/senior high school principal at Fort Loramie Schools. Firks was a high school social studies teacher for eight years, sharing his time between Jackson Center Local, New Bremen and Napoleon Schools. Firks served one year as a special education teacher and assistant athletic director at Parkway Local Schools. He has also been a basketball and baseball coach.
Firks received his bachelor’s degrees in secondary education and special education from Wright State University in 2003 and 2008. He earned his master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from Nova Southeastern University in 2006. Firks’ educational administration courses were taken at the University of Dayton and Bowling Green State University.
Firks said that he, wife Kim and their four children are excited about moving to the district. Their children will attend Bethel Schools.