Haines hires retired educator as interim superintendent

Rich Carlson will be Haines’ new interim superintendent. This photo was taken at the end of his time as Cordova’s interim superintendent. (Photo by Pola Lem/The Cordova Times)
Rich Carlson will be Haines’ new interim superintendent. This photo was taken at the end of his time as Cordova’s interim superintendent. (Photo by Pola Lem/The Cordova Times)

At a special meeting Monday, the Haines School Board approved an interim superintendent contract with a retired educator living in Juneau.

Rich Carlson served as superintendent in Klawock for a dozen years and worked in education for about 40 years after retiring in 2014.

Shortly after retiring, Carlson went back to work. He served as interim superintendent in Cordova for about a year after that district’s superintendent resigned shortly before the start of school.

Haines former superintendent Ginger Jewell resigned unexpectedly in June, after fulfilling one year of a three-year contract. Jewell said the main reason for her early departure was to be closer to family.

Carlson will take over as superintendent while the school board searches for a permanent hire. His start date with the Haines District is August 3rd. His contract is for six months, but School Board President Anne Marie Palmieri says it could be extended to a year if the board’s search for a permanent hire is still in progress.

The school district will pay Carlson $425 per day, which is equivalent to a yearly salary of $110,000.Jewell’s annual salary was $103,000.

The school board took another step in what Palmieri called “making a clean break” with former superintendent Jewell. Last school year, the board agreed to a contract with a company owned by Jewell’s husband, David Thompson. The Atlanta-based Global School Services uses bulk purchasing power to help school districts save money on equipment orders. The school board voted to terminate that contract. The district has not used GSS for any purchases.

The next school board meeting, with the interim superintendent present, is scheduled for August 18th.

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