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JCPS Teachers Union Wants More Input Before School Board Considers Superintendent Contract

Eleanor Hasken
Sarah Yost prepares her classroom for her new students at Wesport Middle School, in Louisville, Ky., on Friday, August 8, 2014. Photo by Eleanor Hasken

At its regular meeting Monday, the Jefferson County Board of Education will consider renewing Superintendent Donna Hargen’s contract for another four years, but the teachers union is asking that it be delayed until there is adequate time for stakeholder input.

Since joining the state's largest school district in 2011, Hargens has received mostly positive reviews from the school board, though  the latest review did ask that Hargens share her opinion more.

Hargens oversaw a reorganization of the central office at the recommendation of an independent audit and has led JCPS since the state adopted new standards, known as the Common Core.

Hargens' salary is $276,000.

According to JCPS officials, Hargens has declined annual salary increases provided in her existing contract, and she has requested that there be no increase in her base salary should her new contract be approved.

Hargens also requested that the school district not pay for certain technology and communication devices she’s eligible to receive.

In an email to JCPS board members, Jefferson County Teachers Association President Brent McKim said the union recommends "no less than four weeks for community input after providing notice of when these decisions will be made."

McKim's email goes on to say, "the members of the elected school board have a responsibility to actively seek feedback from stakeholders and employee groups to inform such an important decision as the employment of the superintendent."