John Silveri joins RCS as interim superintendent

Kristin Bull resigns from RCS school board, applicants sought to fill vacancy

By: Mary Beth Almond | Rochester Post | Published September 6, 2023

 John Silveri was recently appointed as the interim superintendent for Rochester Community Schools.

John Silveri was recently appointed as the interim superintendent for Rochester Community Schools.

Photo provided by Rochester Community Schools


ROCHESTER/ROCHESTER HILLS/OAKLAND TOWNSHIP — John Silveri was selected to temporarily replace former Rochester Community Schools Superintendent Robert Shaner while a search for a permanent district leader takes place.

Shaner, who served as the district’s superintendent since 2013, resigned from his position in August.

While RCS has a process in place for hiring the next superintendent — which involves the Board of Education interviewing, selecting and appointing a new superintendent, and approving a contract — there is no documented process for hiring an interim superintendent within the district.

This time around, district officials said board President Michelle Bueltel initiated the process for locating an interim superintendent candidate after receiving emails or having discussions with other board colleagues, adding that follow-up conversations with leaders from the Michigan Association of School Boards and Oakland Schools, along with board members from other districts, indicated that an interim search is different from a permanent superintendent search.

“I found that, in general, interim superintendents do not ‘interview’ or compete against other candidates for a position in public. In almost all cases, interim candidates are identified by the president of the board or another trustee and that single candidate is brought to the board for approval,” Bueltel said in a statement. “I felt I had approval from a majority of the board to work on identifying a candidate.”

On Aug. 21, the majority of the Board of Education approved the appointment of Silveri to serve as the district’s interim superintendent through June 30, 2024.

He will receive compensation for the performance of duties at a per-diem rate of $1,100 per day for each day worked and for each authorized absence, according to the district. The superintendent may be absent with pay for up to seven business days during the contract term for purposes of vacation, illness or personal leave, and the contract is through June 30, 2024.

Weaver was the lone board member to vote against the motion.

“I urge our board to strongly consider starting this process over,” Weaver said. “We should have identified what our expectations are of this interim position, what do we want them to accomplish, tangible goals over the term in which they serve — we did not do that. We could have done that as a board. There was a long list of people that were interested. We should go through that list and vet it based on some set criteria that we agree on. We can meet at a board table and do that. … There is no reason to do this the way it was done. I think it would show a lot to the community to start over.”

Litkouhi said she is “hopeful” Silveri is somebody “everyone on the board can work with.”

“I’m extremely disappointed in the process. I think this was handled really poorly and there is room for improvement there, as a board, because … it’s hard to trust each other when you cut some of us out of the process,” she said during the meeting. “We’ve been given one candidate to choose from. If we don’t vote to approve this candidate, it will delay us substantially, I suppose. …With that in mind, I’m interested in taking on an interim superintendent who can, hopefully, help us improve in the areas we need to improve to address some of the decline that we’re seeing, so that we can turn that around with the proper support.”

Board member Jessica Gupta said she was impressed with Silveri’s background, experience, candor, and experience with strategic planning and superintendent searches, making him “a stellar candidate.”

“I’m grateful that he is willing to serve our community in this respect,” she said.

Silveri, a 15-year resident of Rochester, began serving in his role with the district Aug. 24.

Bueltel said Silveri is a “distinguished educational leader” who brings “a wealth of experience and valuable qualities to this role.”

He has many years in public education, including initially serving as a teacher and a counselor. He spent 14 years in Allen Park Public Schools as a principal, human resources director and assistant superintendent; five years as superintendent of Marysville Public Schools; and nearly five years as superintendent of the Waterford School District.

Since his retirement in 2015, Silveri has served as Michigan Leadership Institute’s regional president for southeast Michigan, supporting various school districts with superintendent searches, strategic planning, grade level reconfiguration, board governance and leadership coaching. He has also assisted Birmingham Public Schools as its interim assistant superintendent for human resources, interim deputy superintendent and interim superintendent; and served Ferndale Public Schools as its interim deputy superintendent for human resources.

Silveri said he “considers it an honor” to serve as interim superintendent in his hometown.

“To have the opportunity to give back to my own community in this way and help serve as a bridge between your former superintendent and your next superintendent is exciting to me, and I really appreciate the opportunity,” he shared.

Silveri said his greatest strength is his ability to “connect with people and work effectively with people.”

“I have a good track record of being able to build trust among the people that I work with. I welcome folks to be engaged, be collaborative, and provide feedback — I think that’s the most effective way to lead,” he said.


Bull resigns from RCS Board of Education, candidates sought
The RCS Board of Education is seeking to fill a vacant trustee position following the resignation of Treasurer Kristin Bull, who submitted her letter of resignation effective Aug. 30.

Bull said the RCS Board has been an integral part of her and her family’s lives for the past nine years. 

“Serving this community was one of my greatest joys. I am proud of the work I was a part of during the time I served, and I will continue to advocate for public education in all the ways I can. I am very much looking forward to shifting all of my attention right now to priorities in my personal life — mainly, on being a mom,” Bull said in an email.

“We thank Mrs. Bull for her years of service to Rochester Community Schools. Kristin has many talents that have benefited the district over the years. She focused on collaboration and always keeping our students at the center of every decision,” Bueltel said in a statement.

“For nearly nine years, Kristin has been a dedicated public servant, volunteering as a Board member to put the needs of students first,” Debi Fragomeni, deputy superintendent for teaching and learning, said in a statement. “During her tenure, le spending plan that supported high-quality student programs, such as the addition of the district’s orchestra program. Bond and sinking fund programs were also overwhelmingly supported by the community to enhance safety and school security and provide long-lasting districtwide improvements. We are truly grateful for Kristin’s leadership and service to our community.”

The board will follow the Revised School Code and Michigan election laws in appointing an eligible candidate to fill the vacant trustee position. When the appointee is sworn in, their term will begin immediately and continue through Dec. 31, 2024.

For consideration as a candidate, the application, along with a resume, must be received by the president of the Board of Education by noon on Wednesday, Sept. 13. Postmark dates will not be considered. To access the application, go to

The board will identify applicants who will move to the interview phase during a regular meeting at 6 p.m. Monday, Sept. 18, in the Stoney Creek High School media center, 6755 Sheldon Road in Rochester Hills.

On Wednesday, Sept. 27, a special meeting will be held to meet candidates, conduct public interviews, and select a trustee. The meeting is tentatively scheduled for 6 p.m.

To be eligible to serve on the Rochester Community Schools Board of Education, candidates must be a qualified school elector. Being a qualified school elector means a candidate must be a registered voter in the district. Additionally, the candidate must be at least 18 years of age, a citizen of the United States, a resident of the state of Michigan for at least 30 days, and a resident of the Rochester Community School District.

Any individual who has been convicted of a felony involving dishonesty, deceit, fraud or a breach of the public trust related to an elective office or position of government employment is disqualified from service on the board.

For more information, visit or call the district at (248) 726-3000.