For the first time since February, the Whitley County Board of Education held an in-person meeting on July 9, which took place in the lobby of the Whitley County Board of Education Building in Williamsburg.
Social distancing was enforced, and masks were in use when social distancing wasn’t possible, or people were moving around.
During the meeting, the board met in executive session for over an hour to discuss the annual evaluation of Superintendent John Siler before returning to regular session, and announcing their evaluation.
“This has been a challenging year for education in our district, especially considering the COVID-19 pandemic. The board has been able to observe and be part of the successes achieved this year. The evaluation focused on two standards of performance agreed upon by the board and superintendent. The board voted unanimously that Mr. Siler receives a rating of exemplary in the areas of instructional and influential leadership,” said Board Chairwoman Brenda Hill.
“The board will be working with Superintendent Siler to develop goals for the 2020-2021 year. We look forward to working together to make our school district more successful.”
Hill added that Siler is especially deserving of the exemplary status given his outstanding handling of the COVID-19 crisis.
Under the superintendent evaluation system, a superintendent can receive one of four performance levels in one of seven areas of evaluation, including: strategic leadership, instructional leadership, cultural leadership, human resource leadership, managerial leadership, collaborative leadership and influential leadership.
Exemplary means exceeds the standard. Accomplished means meets the standard. Development means makes growth toward meeting the standard, and growth required means areas required to be addressed in the professional growth plan.
This was Siler’s second evaluation as superintendent.
In 2019, he received a performance level of accomplished in all seven areas of evaluation.
Hill said that the board opted to evaluate Siler on the performance areas of instructional leadership and influential leadership because those were the areas Siler identified during his evaluation last year that he wanted to focus on as part of his professional growth plan.
Siler said that he was pleased with his evaluation.
“We have identified a couple of other standards for next year that I am going to focus on. Of course, you want to hit all the standards when you are superintendent. We are going to focus on some of those,” Siler said.
In other business Thursday, Siler gave the board an update on the status of the HVAC (Heating Ventilation Air-Conditioning) replacement at Whitley County Middle School.
Every unit at the school is being replaced this summer.
“I feel confident by the time we start school that we will have this project behind us,” Siler added.