NEW ULM - The District 88 Board of Education Thursday approved an employment agreement with Washington Interim Principal Les Koppendrayer.
The agreement is for a year, to allow for recruitment of a permanent principal.
Former Washington Principal Bill Sprung left the school in the past summer, after accepting a different position.
Koppendrayer just retired from a school in Mankato.
Under the agreement, Koppendrayer's contract is for a flexible length of time, 178-185 days, depending on need, starting Sept. 11.
The rate of pay is $376 a day.
The contract is modeled after agreements with the other principals on a pro-rated basis, said Superintendent Harold Remme.
Koppendrayer will get up to 18 sick-leave days if needed, and his deferred compensation is capped at $1,500.
He will receive no health insurance and no TRA (teacher retirement account) payments or other benefits.
He will be responsible for supervising six evening activities.
The reduced number of contractual days (other principals work 260 days) and the pro-ration of other contractual clauses results in savings of more than $50,000 to the district, according to Superintendent Harold Remme.
The board also heard a report on activities to campaign for public support of an upcoming levy vote.
Supporters of the levy have formed a committee to raise funds and communicate a pro-levy message.
They plan to distribute lawn signs, produce web videos, canvass neighborhoods, etc.
The district is asking for a new 10-year school tax levy of $575 per pupil unit.
The vote is on Election Day, Nov. 6.
The board also heard a report from professional learning communities coordinator Sue Rosenow about how the state assigns a new multiple measurement rating (MMR) to schools.
MMR is a new state system to track school progress. Last spring, it replaced the adequate yearly progress (AYP) system formerly required under No Child Left Behind.
The new system came as a result of Minnesota obtaining a federal waiver exempting it from some provisions of No Child Left Behind.
The MMR system is based on a larger set of factors than the previous system.
It is takes into account four measures: student proficiency in reading and math, as shown on Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCAs); student growth from year to year; reduction in the achievement gap between majority students and specific other student groups (low-income, minority, special education, etc.); and graduation rate.
New Ulm schools scored well on the measures tested. Jefferson Elementary, in particular, scored the highest rating possible on proficiency (the other measures are not applicable to the school because of how the system works).
Washington and the High School both did well, but also had some areas to work on, especially in terms of narrowing the achievement gap, especially at Washington.