Board votes to extend Fowler’s contract

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor

The Portales School Board voted unanimously Monday to extend Superintendent Randy Fowler’s contract through the 2009-2010 school year.

Fowler is in his third year as superintendent in the Portales district. He served as a teacher and administrator in the district for 19 years early in his career before becoming superintendent of Eunice schools and an educational consultant in Texas.

“We’re very pleased with his performance,” Board President Rod Savage said. “We’ve been blessed to have him.”

Savage said the things that weighed into a favorable evaluation for Fowler included positive school climate reports, in which faculty and staff are asked to fill out surveys on administration officials. He said other positive factors have been his leadership during the bond issue this fall and his continuing supervision over the early stages of a project to build a new elementary school.

“Our auditor’s report has improved over the last two years, and that’s to his credit,” Savage said. “He’s been putting the right people in place to make those changes.”

The board agreed to delay putting numbers to Fowler’s compensation under his new contract until sometime after the state Legislature meets and the district has a clearer picture of its budget. Fowler’s current compensation is approximately $110,000 per year.

“I think it’s a great place to work, a great school district,” Fowler said. “The board is supportive of our plans to improve school performance and that’s a real positive.”

Fowler said improving student performance is his main focus and goal going forward.

“We feel like we’ll always have room for improvement and we’re going to strive for that every year,” he said. “The good thing is, we have the data to show we are improving.”

In other business the board:
• Presented awards to board members Alan Garrett and Inez Rodriguez for board continuing education achievements.

• Accepted donations from Altrusa of $894 and Big Valley Auto of $1,300.

• Amended the district’s fleet contract payment schedule to reflect a fuel adjustment.

• Gave approval for investment of monies in a local short-term investment fund that officials estimate may bring the district an extra $84,000 per year in interest earnings.

• Approved bids for cafeteria food and supplies that is split variously between Ben E. Keith, Sysco, Shamrock, Super Save and Sara Lee.