Egolf’s contract not renewed by SA board

Authored by Clint Anderson on Jun 23, 2010

Mitch Sprunger ended his brief stint serving on the South Adams School Board with a few parting words and one final motion as he ended Tuesday’s special meeting with the recommendation that the board not allow an automatic renewal of Superintendent Cathy Egolf’s contract, and that her current contract not be renewed on June 30, 2011, thus ending her stint with the school.
Sprunger, who was filling the remainder of the term of Myron Schwartz, began his final address to the board by stating that he was not resigning from the board, but “waiving his constitutional right to a holdover term.” After addressing the end of his service, Sprunger made his motion that carried by a 5-2 vote, with board members Steve Dobler and Julie Mansfield dissenting.
When asked to address the action that gives Egolf just one more year with the school following the meeting, Sprunger declined to go into details, but said that, “it was time to go in a different direction.”
Egolf has been with South Adams since 2006.
Egolf’s contract wasn’t the only one addressed during the meeting as the board passed by 5-2 vote Egolf’s recommendation to not renew assistant athletic director Herb Resler’s contract effective June 30. It was the third time Egolf made the recommendation, and following another lengthy discussion on the matter during a work session that preceded the meeting the board acted with Arlene Amstutz and John Mann voting against the motion.
“This was not easy in any way,” said board president Tony Mellencamp. “I am trusting the expertise of those saying that we can do this, and I want to thank Herb for all his years of service.
“Thinking that if we don’t take this action and that it might mean deeper cuts that could hurt kids more scares me to death.”
Resler has served in the assistant athletic director role for 12 years.
Mann stated during the work session that he had spoken with Resler and understood that he would take a $10,000 per year pay cut to remain in the role and said that he would put it in writing.
“I don’t have that in writing,” said Egolf.
High school principal Trent Lehman explained to the board that he, Egolf and athletic director Mike Pries met with Dave Vorhees, head of building and grounds, and Judy Miller, head custodian, and all three, “felt much more secure that we could make it without an assistant athletic director. There will be a transition and some bumps that come with that, but we’ll have to figure that out.”
“I’ve never been at a school where there’s been an assistant AD,” said Egolf. “We’ve been fortunate.”
The cut stems from a number of reductions the school has made in effort to meet a reduced budget set forth by the state.
The board passed, by 6-1 votes, reducing the athletic extra curricular budget by not filling positions for third through sixth grade boys and girls basketball coaches, third through sixth grade volleyball coaches, and freshman girls basketball if there are not enough players out to make a team, amounting to $7,400 in reductions; and non-athletic extra curricular reductions by not filling elementary yearbook, middle school yearbook, 9-12 student government, 6-8 student government, K-5 student government, six department chairs for single person departments, nine text book adoption positions, machine trades club, Project Lead the Way club, chess club and drama club positions, amounting to around $9,500 in savings.
“We’re already lean with our coaches and working with much fewer assistants than many other area schools,” said Dobler, who made the motion toward athletic budget cuts. “I’m not comfortable making any more reductions that that.”
The board also approved the resignations of varsity girls tennis coach Cindy Greer, seventh grade volleyball coach Edie Coblentz, football assistant coach Brad Buckingham, varsity swimming assistant coach Ashley Koons, varsity track assistant coach Rod Mosser, junior varsity girls basketball coach Darren Williams, and varsity girls basketball coach Kip Jones.



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