USD 466 superintendent, Wilson, resigns

6/9/2014

By ANGIE HAFLICH

By ANGIE HAFLICH

ahaflich@gctelegram.com

On the heels of Scott County USD 466's recent budget shortfall, USD 466 Superintendent Bill Wilson has resigned from his post. School board members accepted his resignation, effective June 30, at the June 2 board of education meeting.

In April, it was revealed that the district was facing a $1.1 million shortfall. The board was forced to make cuts in order to make up for it, ultimately resulting in a draining of the district's cash reserves in order to meet 2013-14 financial obligations. At the May 1 board meeting, after board members spent several hours in closed session, the decision was made to cut another $705,000 for the 2014-15 school year. Those cuts included elimination of teaching positions, a district-wide pay cut of 2 percent and a reduction in health care benefits.

Wilson, who had two years remaining on his contract, declined to comment Monday about both the reason for his resignation and the district's budget shortfall.

Brian Staats, managing partner of the district's CPA firm, Adams, Brown, Beran and Ball CPA, of Great Bend, conducted an audit of the school's financial records in April. The board based the cuts on his findings. At that time, Staats said that the superintendent is responsible for reviewing and monitoring the district's budget throughout the year, and that as part of that job, it was his responsibility to bring concerns or updates to the school board.

Meanwhile, Wilson said, it's business as usual for him as Scott County superintendent until his last day on June 30.

"We're looking for a school nurse, and we're getting to review the applications," Wilson said. "So I'm working with the other administrators with those types of duties, filling positions and preparing for next year, getting the agenda ready for next Monday's meeting."

Wilson said that Scott County High School Principal Shelly Turner is in charge of the search for an interim superintendent for the 2014-15 school year.

Turner did not return a phone call Monday seeking comment.

"I know they already put the names out and they've got some applications already, and they'll review some of that at next Monday's board meeting," Wilson said about the search for an interim superintendent. "I would imagine all of that will be executive session to protect those names. Those won't be released until — it will depend on how they go about their process. I'm helping in any way we can, and we're going to be moving forward in the best interest of the district."

Wilson said that the district and board will continue the process until a suitable replacement is found.

"If they can have somebody ready to roll by July 1, they will. And if not, they'll take the due diligence and time necessary to make sure that they get the best solution possible moving forward," Wilson said.

According to an article in the June 5 Scott County Record, at the June 2 meeting, Board President Mark Davis said that in December, the board will decide if the interim superintendent is a suitable replacement or if the district will begin a "full-fledged search" for a permanent one.

Davis did not return a phone call Monday seeking comment.

Also at the June 2 meeting, the board accepted the resignation of Scott City Middle School Principal Jim Howard. Wilson said that Scott City Elementary School Principal Shawn Roberts is heading up the search for Howard's replacement.

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