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H-F board extends contracts for top administrators

The District 233 school board extended contracts for several administrators at its March 16 meeting.

Principal Jerry Anderson came to Homewood-Flossmoor High School in July 2017 on a one-year contract, and then received a three-year extension through June 2021. The board extended her contact to the end of June 2022. Her salary will be $186,178.

Quitman Dillard, assistant principal of the North Building, joined the staff for the 2020-21 school year. In addition to his duties as assistant principal, Dillard is coordinating summer school programs at H-F. He previously was assistant principal at Thornridge High School in Dolton. He was given a two-year contract extension. In the 2022-23 school year he will earn $122,767.

Jennifer Hester, director of curriculum, instruction and professional development, came to H-F in the 2020-21 school year. She has more than 20 years experience working as a consultant and in leadership positions, most recently as chief academic officer for Naperville District 203. The board extended her contract through 2022-23 when her salary will be $171,666.

Matthew Lyke, director of athletics, came to H-F in the 2019-2020 year to fill the director of activities spot. He moved to director of athletics in 2020-21. He spent 13 years as a teacher in Lincoln-Way District 210 and then director of athletics for Lincoln-Way North High before it closed. The board extended his contract through 2022-23 when his salary will be $119,646.

The vote was 5-1 with Nate Legardy voting no. Member Annette Bannon abstained.

Before the vote, board member Pam Jackson said the board should have had a closed session on these contracts. She also wondered why the board was approving an administrative team that was extending contracts into the start of the new superintendent’s term.

Before voting on these contracts, the board had approved the hiring of Scott Wakeley as superintendent-elect for the 2021-22 school year. He will become superintendent when Superintendent Von Mansfield retires in June 2022.

Jackson said Wakeley should be able to evaluate the administrative team this next year, before any contracts were extended into the 2022-23 school year.

Member Beth Larocca agreed, adding that she questioned the process that was used arguing each person should be evaluated separately.

Member Debbie Berman said although discussions from the board’s closed sessions cannot be revealed, she wanted the public to know that each administrator was vetted and discussed. She said extending the contracts into Wakeley’s term will give the administrative team “some stability.”

Member Gerald Pauling, chair of the board’s Personnel Committee, said the process used in presenting administrators’ contracts together is one that has been in place for a number of years.

Bannon said she believes the process should be reviewed.

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