NEW MILFORD — A three-member committee that will lead the search for a new schools superintendent began this week sketching an idea of how the hiring process should unfold.

Board Chairwoman Angie Chastain and members Bob Coppola and David Shaffer met briefly Tuesday to begin the process of finding a replacement for Superintendent of Schools JeanAnn Paddyfote.

Paddyfote announced earlier this month she will retire Jan. 31, 2016 after more than 30 years with the school district.

The committee members agreed to recommend hiring a search firm to identify an initial round of candidates for an interim superintendent and a permanent replacement. They also considered reaching out to the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education (CABE).

“I’d recommend finding a retired superintendent to fill the interim position,” Shaffer said. “We will be in the middle of the budget season when he or she comes in. We need someone with experience We have to present our budget proposal to the town on Feb. 1.”

Since Paddyfote will use accrued vacation time before her official last day, Coppola recommended hiring an interim superintendent before Jan. 31.

The committee also suggested reaching out to area districts like Bethel, Brookfield, Newtown and Ridgefield that recently hired superintendents and could recommend search firms or refer potential interim candidates.

Bill Dahl, who is running for a Board of Education seat on the Democratic ticket, said during the public-comment period that he has experience with search committees from his years of teaching in the North Salem school system in New York.

“Getting more stakeholders involved in the search committee process assures choosing a person who will best fit the district’s needs,” Dahl said.

Resident Brian McCauley said the search should stretch beyond the New Milford school district and recommended hiring a long-term interim superintendent to allow for a thorough search to fill the position permanently.

The committee will make its recommendations to the full Board of Education at the regular board meeting on Oct. 13.; 203-731-3352