Sylvania Schools Leader is 'Undercover Superintendent'

SYLVANIA, OH (WTOL) - Dr. Adam Fineske does not make his way around the halls like most Superintendents.

As boss of northwest Ohio's second largest school district, the new Sylvania Superintendent decided the best way to learn the job is to become the student himself.

"The idea really came about for me as a first year superintendent in a very large school district," Dr. Fineske said. "To get myself out in the trenches of our school district and realize all the important jobs going on to make our district successful."

"I want to get out there and see it. I want to be part of it and I came up with the idea to do it in a unique way."

He is calling himself the "Undercover Superintendent."

Over the next several weeks, Dr. Fineske says he will get out of the office and into his schools, cafeterias and classrooms, taking on the jobs of employees like custodian Carolyn Akins.

"We're all a team here, but mostly we're family," Akins explained. "From the teachers to the principal, down to the kitchen people to us, we're a team to make the school run for our children." 

"I need to understand how hard they're working. For me, it's about appreciating. It's about understanding the job and how important it is for the success of our school district," Dr. Fineske said. "My students, staff, our parents know they're going to see me out and about. Visibility is huge in leadership and making sure you're seeing what's going on so that when you have to make big decisions for the community, you've actually been out there seeing it and doing. Not just, you know, acting like you do."

"It was an honor to let him see what we do as a team here, too," Akins said.

"I want people to see me as all in. That I'm not just sitting in an office somewhere," Dr. Fineske explained. "My goal everyday is to be in two school buildings and I am, everyday." 

Dr. Fineske will take his "Undercover Superintendent" idea to other schools, taking on roles of high school teacher, school secretary, a special needs aide and even a bus mechanic.

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