The Elmbrook School Board on Tuesday approved a restructuring plan for some of its top administrators, a move that is expected to save the district almost $100,000.
The board approved a new contract for Kristi Foy, the current staff counsel, to serve as staff counsel and human resources director and modified the contract of Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Operations Keith Brightman to take on some human resources duties as well.
The restructuring divvies up the responsibilities of former Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Christine Hedstrom, who left the district in June. That assistant superintendent position has been eliminated.
"I give my unreserved and emphatic support (for the restructuring)," Board President Tom Gehl said before the vote. "I believe in the flatter structure, I believe in the effectiveness of it and most of all I believe in Kristi's ability to step into it and do very well."
Candidates didn't fit
Foy will work four days a week with the option to expand to five. She will be in charge of a number of tasks, including hiring, performance evaluations and contract negotiations.
Foy's salary will be $85,000.
In addition to his work on the district's budget and operations, Brightman now will oversee the human resources department. Brightman's salary will be increased by $15,000 to $130,800 annually.
The switch in administrative structure was made because none of the finalists for the assistant superintendent position - Elmbrook interviewed 11 candidates and narrowed the field to three - fully matched what the district was looking for, Superintendent Matt Gibson said.
Board member Meg Wartman, who was part of the search team, praised Foy and Brightman for their hard work and commitment.
"While the candidates were very strong and had a lot of great attributes, I just didn't see one as a perfect fit, probably because we've seen Kristi and Keith in action so well," she said. "They're irreplaceable, so I think this is a great structure."
Savings add up
The district plans to bring in a part-time person to help with staff budgeting and staff modeling, which would save about $7,500 over Foy's previous three-day-a-week position. Elmbrook also will make some other staffing changes in the human resources and business offices, including adding a 30-hour-a-week controller position and adding a half-time benefits assistant.
Additional savings from the district's switch in health care plans - about $100,000 more than was budgeted - will be used to pay for the new positions, Brightman said.
Overall, the change in contracts and new hires will yield a savings of about $93,000, Brightman said.
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