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Dr. Rupak Gandhi, the superintendent of Fargo Public Schools, discusses hiring personnel, purchasing land, and school vouchers



Fargo, North Dakota – After our most recent interview with the district’s chief executive, it may be even clearer that Fargo Public Schools’ future is promising and expanding.

Several highs and lows of the current academic year for FPS were discussed by Superintendent Dr. Rupak Gandhi, including a recent agreement reached between Sanford and Fargo Schools for land on the city’s south side.

“We know that all of the public school districts here in the FM Metro are going to grow,” said Dr. Gandhi while appearing on WDAY Midday. “So we’re always looking at potential opportunities to purchase land or make moves to that we are not in a bind when that growth inevitably comes.”

Due to aging structures and attendance at some that might not necessitate a full, regular K–5th-grade program, Dr. Gandhi did consider the potential of re-purposing or perhaps establishing new elementary schools in the center and northern parts of Fargo. No specific schools have been mentioned or made public throughout the dialogue.

In terms of personnel, Dr. Gandhi believes that the problem will persist for some time to come because the district faces competition from more than simply nearby schools.

“When it comes to some of the positions in the district that are even outside just teaching positions, we’re no longer just competing with other school districts but the private sector as well,” noted Gandhi. “Whether its individuals that work in nutrition, in service, transportation, custodial or even maintenance operations.”

However, Dr. Gandhi noted that one of the Fargo Public Schools’ staff members and teachers weathering the storm of frequently wearing multiple hats to fill in for those openings has been one of his district’s “wins” this academic year.

While pointing out that his concern is not with the local private schools but rather the resources that are being made accessible, Superintendent Gandhi also talked about the likelihood of school voucher measures being considered in Bismarck during the legislative session.

“Not because of the merit of those schools or others in the community, but rather using taxpayer dollars,” said Gandhi. “That take away from public education resources just can’t happen since we’re already so under-resourced.”

Dr. Gandhi did recently release a “State of the Schools” address that focused more specifically on the legislative session and the district’s long-term intentions.