Bend-La Pine Schools Superintendent Shay Mikalson will be leading Oregon’s fifth-largest school district for at least three more years — and is receiving an 8 percent raise.
At a brief Tuesday night Bend-La Pine Schools board meeting, which board members joined via conference call due to snow, five of the six board members present agreed to extend Mikalson’s contract, along with those of other top district administrators.
Mikalson’s new contract will pay him a base annual salary of $227,204 — a raise of more than 8 percent from his last contract, which was signed in October 2017. The contract lasts three years and begins July 1, but on every July 1 afterward, an extra year will be added unless the school board or Mikalson decides to not extend the contract by June 30, 2020.
Mikalson, who oversees a district of 18,084 students, can also earn a performance-based extra compensation each year of up to 10 percent of his base salary and will receive a $1,200 stipend each month for expenses such as in-state mileage, cell phone bills and meals.
During his four-year tenure, Mikalson has presided over enrollment increases each year and record-high graduation rates, with particularly high gains for Latino students. In Bend-La Pine, 81.9 percent of the class of 2018 graduated, compared to the state average of 78.68 percent.
Board Chair Andy High said the school board believed Mikalson was doing “an excellent job,” which is why they agreed to the raise and extension.
“We want to keep him going and keep where the district is going,” he said after the board meeting Tuesday night.
Mikalson said he was happy to stick around.
“It’s an honor to do this work, and I feel extremely fortunate to work with the great team at Bend-La Pine Schools,” he said. “It’s really a dream opportunity.”
On Tuesday night, the school board also approved three-year contract extensions for three other high-level administrators: Deputy Superintendent Jay Mathisen, Assistant Superintendent Lora Nordquist and Chief Operations & Fiscal Officer Brad Henry. Unlike Mikalson, their salaries receive a slight cost-of-living increase each year, and their 2019-20 salaries will be finalized in the spring, according to Andrea Wilson, the school board and superintendent’s executive assistant.
For this current school year, Mathisen earns $141,280 annually, and Nordquist and Henry earn $134,102 per year.
The school board also approved contract extensions for various teachers and other administrators throughout the school district Tuesday night.
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