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Wednesday, June 26, 2019

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Lafourche School Board advances search for superintendent

Lafourche School Board advances search for superintendent

The Lafourche School Board hopes to have recommendations by May 14 for selecting a new schools superintendent.

The board instructed its search committee tonight to develop procedures for replacing Jo Ann Matthews, who plans to retire in March 2019.

In January, School Board President Al Archer said the board’s finance committee would be looking at compensation for superintendents around the region.

Matthew’s salary has grown 55 percent from $140,623.25 in 2005, her first year as superintendent. Her pay was frozen, at her request, at $219,937.10 per year in 2015.

The board must decide if it wants to hire the next superintendent or let the next board make the selection. The current board’s term ends on Dec. 31.

Hiring the next superintendent before the board’s term ends could potentially lead to the district having two superintendents under contract until Matthews’ contract expires. One suggested possibility is to have Matthews serve as an adviser to the next superintendent during that time.

Board members have started looking into qualities they want in the next superintendent.

The board is also starting on the superintendent’s spring observation for the 2017-18 school year. The superintendent is usually evaluated twice per term, once in the fall and once in the spring.

When performing evaluations, board members look at the superintendent’s record, including how she manages the budget, the finances and the employees. Each board member completes an observation report with scores ranging from 1 to 5, and then the review committee averages and totals the scores.

Board members have until May 21 to turn in their evaluations of Matthews, who typically gets top ratings.

The School Board has praised the job Matthews has done in her years as superintendent, citing financial stability and district performance growth under her watch.

Staff Writer Andrea Mujica can be reached at 857-1148 or Follow her on twitter @CationM.