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Jefferson Board of Ed approves interim superintendent contract

By Staff | Jan 16, 2015

CHARLES TOWN – Even before his contract was formally approved at Monday night’s meeting, Jefferson County interim superintendent of schools Alan Sturm had brought board of education members up to speed about his many activities – including plans to bring a draft inclement weather policy to their next meeting.

Sturm also explained how much time and effort goes into determining whether school should be held during bad weather.

There’s a lot of communication with other district officials, including transportation director Robert Boylan, as well as superintendents in Morgan and Berkeley counties, he said.

“It’s not about being copycats. We do that to get an idea if snow or other bad weather is moving this way,” Sturm said.

During his report, Sturm also announced plans to institute a special program to recognize district students, teachers and staff who “go the extra mile,” he said, adding that the recipient will receive a certificate.

“We want to let the public know what wonderful things are being accomplished in Jefferson County schools,” Sturm said.

In the end, board members – including president Scott Sudduth, who participated via telephone – unanimously approved a six-month contact that will run through June. At that time, a new superintendent will be selected to replace Susan Wall, whose retirement was effective on Dec. 31.

His salary will be $66,789.75, and he will also receive 10 vacation days as well as nine personal leave days, including six sick and three leave without cause days, according to the contract.

It also stipulates that Sturm, who worked alongside Wall before she left, will receive $517.75 per day – the same daily rate utilized to calculate his salary for the interim superintendent period, the contract states.

Later in the meeting, board member Kathy Skinner expressed support for Sturm and what he’s already accomplished, adding, “In the past 12 days you have literally hit the ground running. And if that hasn’t scared you away, I think this is going to work out well.”

Vice president Mark Osbourn, who chaired the session, said he knew Sturm was the right person for the job because of his many years of educational experience and the fact he’d held so many different positions.

“Alan had a lot of experience from working with the board, plus he had such a diverse background, so we were extremely fortunate to find someone with his kind of background. Not to mention the willingness to take this job in the middle of winter, because that often means getting up at three or four o’clock to decide whether to have school,” Osbourn said after the meeting concluded.

Osbourn said work is still continuing on being ready to post the superintendent’s position.

Even after 45 years in education, Sturm said he couldn’t be happier or more excited with his newest post.

“Things are on a really positive track and we are already getting a lot done. I fully expect that we will continue in this positive direction,” Sturm said following the meeting.