Henning seeking new superintendentPublished 10:34am Friday, April 6, 2012
Henning has 13 applicants for a new school superintendent to replace the retiring Dean Soutor. The school board plans to begin the interview process the week of April 16. Soutor’s final day as superintendent will be June 30.
A public input meeting on the superintendent position was held Thursday, March 29. The school board gave area residents the opportunity to express their views about what qualities they would like to see in a new superintendent.
This past fall Soutor took an active role in helping the school board persuade school district residents to vote yes to renew taxpayer levy funding. There was overwhelming support, of 75 percent in favor of the proposal which passed by 449 to 152.
“Now we have money to enhance technology,” said Soutor. “Short-term goals include adding wireless Internet, iPads and other features. School priorities also include expanded computer labs and smartboards.”
District voters passed a $400 per student levy referendum in 2001 and a $600 per student levy referendum in 2002. The proposal for November 2011 was to combine the two into a continuation of $1,000 per student for the next 10 years.
“The operating levy dollars are locally raised and used at the local level for the students in the Henning School District,” said Soutor. “One advantage of the levy passage is that local tax dollars stay in the community.”
Over the past few months Soutor has thanked area residents for supporting the levy renewal. He also praises them for joining in the school district effort to keep and enhance the level of programming and course offerings for Henning students.
If the levies had failed, Soutor said the school board likely would have started making cuts by increasing kindergarten and first grade class sizes and by slashing electives in high school.
“It would have been an ongoing and negative thing every year,” he said. “Fortunately, school cutbacks don’t have to happen, thanks to the support of district voters.”
Soutor said residents throughout the school district showed their confidence is what teachers and staff are doing.
“They’re pleased with what’s going on in our classrooms and they want it to continue,” said the outgoing superintendent.