Minden Press-Herald

Oct 01st

Superintendent search to stay in-house

Members of the Webster Parish School Board (WPSB) Search Committee will perform the search for a new superintendent, rather than paying a consulting firm to do the work for them.

"Our committee met Thursday to discuss the possibility to entertain the possibility to use the services of a consultant as well as conducting the search internally," President Charles Strong said.

jackiesharpThe search committee spoke for about 30 minutes. Two board members, Jerry Lott and Strong, spoke in opposition to using the consultants. Remaining board members Johnnye Kennon, Malachi Ridgel and Frankie Mitchell did not have anything they wished to express at that time.

"I would like to make a motion that the board send the consultants a letter saying we will not be using their services," Mitchell said at Monday night's meeting. "Even though we are not going to recommend their hiring, we did learn quite a bit from the procedure.

"A lot of board members have not gone through the task of selecting a superintendent," she continued. "I make a motion that we go on with the search committee to select our next superintendent."

The consulting firm, McPherson and Jacobson, offered to take the "drudgery" out of the board's work by coordinating all aspects of the search and hiring process with the exception of selecting the new superintendent. These services would have cost approximately $16,000.

With no objection, the board unanimously agreed to conduct the search through their own means.

Continuing in a spirit of agreement, the board named an interim superintendent without any objection.

"I want to make sure that we all understand 'interim'," Mitchell said. "This is a temporary position and will not automatically promote anyone to the position of superintendent."

Lott made a motion to name Assistant Superintendent Jackie Sharp as interim superintendent.

"This would take effect July 1, until such a time that a superintendent is named by the board, with the stipulation that her pay be increased," Lott said.

Sharp would continue to perform the duties as assistant superintendent, in addition to the work of the superintendent during the time she serves as interim.

Mitchell questioned the amount of the pay increase.

Business and Finance Director Crevonne Odom said the additional pay would be a little more than $2,500 a month.

The position of superintendent has a salary of $129,517 and the assistant superintendent salary is $97,853.

Strong said that because only one person would be paid instead of two, a net savings would be created even with paying the supplement to the assistant superintendent salary.

"For the time we would be supplementing the assistant superintendent salary, we would not be paying the superintendent's salary," Strong said.

Ronnie Broughton made comments that were met with laughter from those in attendance.

"On a light hearted note, if we can get Mrs. Sharp to do that long enough we will make up the budget deficit."






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