Whitehall News

District's streamlining efforts will add, shuffle jobs

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The Whitehall City School District will undergo a major reorganization in the coming months -- one that Superintendent Brian Hamler says will put the district in a better place to serve both students and the community.

Hamler has been making some changes since he joined the district last summer, including in the roles of the director of transportation and maintenance, personnel, and the addition of the director of communications and marketing position.

"I am a firm believer in the thought that performance is greatly impacted through personal and organizational accountability," said Hamler. "This reallocation of resources is designed to improve upon the educational experiences for our children."

A number of new positions are being considered by the school board and are up for a vote this month. They include a deputy superintendent, executive director of secondary education, executive director of elementary education and special education coordinator.

Hamler said the shuffle should not add any cost to the district.

"The approvals that you will see in March are being recommended to respond to the retirement and resignation of two key administrators," he said. "The organizational map is designed to reflect the work currently being done and align roles and responsibilities to support a philosophy of moving decision-making and resources closer to the students.

"The timing of some hires are driven by the retirement or resignation date. I am committed to keep administrative costs neutral."

Late last year, board members approved the retirement of Andy Riggle, the district's former director of administrative services.

Riggle was not replaced. Instead, Dave Hausmann, the district's former director of facilities and transportation, took on additional responsibilities when he was rehired as the director of operations.

"We are currently conducting our job search for the director of elementary education and the director of secondary education," said Hamler. "Committee interviews are scheduled for (this) week.

"The interview process for the deputy superintendent position is now complete and I will be recommending longtime middle school Principal Mark Trace for that position."

Hamler said the district will perform better and respond to today's educational demands much more efficiently with the new structure.

"Cost savings is not driving this plan, but by clearly defining roles and responsibilities, our team will appear to be streamlined," he said. "I believe that you cannot have accountability without autonomy.

"It is my hope that through increased autonomy, we will see better decision-making."

Board members will be asked to approve the new positions when they meet this month in regular session. That meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 11.

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