The decision to grant the new Minneapolis schools superintendent a provisional license, which had been expected early next week, has been put on hold.

The school district applied for a state license variance for Ed Graff on June 3, after the school board selected him over state Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius.

Board members and other district officials believed that the state Board of School Administrators (BOSA) would decide on the application Monday. But now the BOSA said that it technically has 60 days from the application date to make a determination and that it needs more information from the district.

"The board needs time to review the information relevant to [the] district's request for a variance for Mr. Graff," said Janet Mohr, BOSA's executive director.

The approval of a variance had been seen as the final hurdle in the yearlong search for Minneapolis' next superintendent.

"This is the final step," said board Chairwoman Jenny Arneson. "We have done what we need to do, from our perspective."

Mohr said there is time on Monday's BOSA meeting agenda to set a new date to determine if Graff will be granted the variance.

Graff is coming to Minneapolis after leading the Anchorage Public Schools for three years.

Out-of-state superintendents often can automatically receive a Minnesota provisional license if they have a license in another state. But Graff is not licensed as a superintendent because Alaska law does not require school district leaders to obtain a license.

Since he does not have a license, the Minneapolis district had to apply for a variance. Board members and officials had expected the BOSA to make that decision Monday.

"The board understands the urgency of this matter to the district," Mohr said.

Amy Moore, the school district's attorney, said the BOSA wanted the district to answer some technical questions related to state rules, including whether the variance would "positively serve an educational need or opportunity."

The school board approved a contract with Graff earlier this week. He is to assume his new position on July 1.

Moore said she expects the BOSA to act before July, which would not affect Graff's contract.

The contract would become invalid if Graff were unable to obtain a variance.