Nampa schools discuss possible levy and superintendent search

Nampa schools discuss possible levy and superintendent search

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by Jamie Grey

Bio | Email | Follow: @KTVBJamieGrey

KTVB.COM

Posted on November 19, 2013 at 11:23 PM

Updated Wednesday, Nov 20 at 12:15 PM

NAMPA -- Two big topics in the battle-worn Nampa School District up for discussion Tuesday night were the search for a new superintendent and possibly asking local taxpayers to approve a levy.

It's no secret the district has had a number of financial problems through the last couple of years, but administrators say they're getting on track -- and to stay that way, they need help.

With the possibility of a levy, how much would it be, and why?

The number isn't solidified yet. The school board still needs to decide if they'll ask taxpayers for more money and how much.

The interim superintendent says at bare minimum, they'd need to ask for $1.6 million, which is the amount of a current levy, which will expire at the end of the year.

He says they'd need that to simply maintain, if lawmakers don't start restoring state funding in the upcoming session.

Outside of staying the course, and if more money comes in from the state, he wants to use money to start regaining school days and staff.

"We've zeroed out the debt that we have, we will at the end of this year. So I want to use that money to buy back more contact time for children with their teachers, which means then reducing some furlough days, and I also want to be able to hire more teachers," said Pete Koehler, Interim Superintendent.

The board will meet in December to decide if they'll run a levy, for how much and specifically what for.

If they want to go to voters in March, they must submit the ballot language in January, which would be before state funding is hammered out.

The other topic of the day was the search for a new superintendent for the district. The special search committee discussed focus group and online feedback from employees, parents and community members about what they want.

"What I think I've heard is an awareness of the past. I mean, they want strong financial management. They want strong administrative management leadership. They want a dynamic leader. They want a multitude of things the role of superintendent entails," said Richard Hagood, co-chair of the superintendent search committee.

So far, three candidates have applied, and there is no deadline for this process. The committee said three candidates is a good start early on and anticipate more to come in over the holidays.

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