Friday, February 24, 2012

School board renews superintendentís contract

Unanimous vote follows evaluation of Barber performance

Express Staff Writer

Lonnie Barber Steve Guthrie

With little fanfare, the Blaine County School District board of trustees voted unanimously Tuesday to extend Superintendent Lonnie Barber's contract for at least three more years.

The school board also Tuesday approved one-year contract extensions for 14 other top officials, including three district administrators, eight principals and three vice principals.

The vote on Barber's contract followed a statement by board Chair Steve Guthrie, who explained that contract renewal was based upon an extensive annual evaluation by trustees, school district staff and parents.

Barber has served as superintendent since his appointment in 2009 to replace former Superintendent Jim Lewis upon his retirement. Barber served as assistant superintendent for two years before that.

Barber's contract extension was the third he's received since being appointed superintendent.

Assistant Superintendent John Blackman, who oversees personnel issues for the district, explained in an interview Wednesday how school superintendent contracts work in Idaho.

Blackman said that when Barber was hired in 2009, he was given a three-year contract. Each year since then, the school board has voted to extend the contract by another year.

In a prepared statement issued Wednesday, Guthrie stated that Barber's contract renewal was based primarily on the superintendent's success in implementing the district's strategic plan.

"Under Dr. Barber's leadership, the goals of our strategic plan have been accelerated, Guthrie stated. "Dr. Barber has worked closely with the board of trustees, staff and the community at large to implement the strategic plan, which was based on unprecedented community involvement."

In addition to Barber's contract, one-year contract extensions were awarded to Blackman, Director of Student Services Debi Gutknecht and Director of Curriculum Patricia McLean.

Principals receiving contract extensions were Hailey Elementary School Principal Tom Bailey, Hemingway Elementary School Principal Don Haisley, Woodside Elementary School Principal Brad Henson, Wood River High School Principal Pete Jurovich, Bellevue Elementary School Principal Angie Martinez, Carey School Principal John Peck, Wood River Middle School Principal Fritz Peters and Silver Creek High School Principal Lynn Seifert.

Assistant principals whose contracts were renewed are Rob Ditch, Lynn Fuger and Keith Nelson. All three are employed at Wood River High School.

Terry Smith:

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