by Kate Evans
The Morgan County School Board unanimously approved Morgan County Schools Superintendent Erich May’s contract for a two-year term of employment beginning July 1 at their May 22 meeting. May has been serving as Interim Superintendent since
May’s salary for the first year of his term will be $105,120. His salary will increase to $107,223 in the second year.
Board president David Ambrose noted in a phone call that May’s salary is among the lowest 20% of superintendent salaries statewide and is the lowest of all RESA 8 superintendent salaries. The second year salary increase for May is 2%.
Board member Pete Gordon said that May had done a superb job at many things this year- he’d done a great job supporting the special levy and with communication despite many challenges.
Gordon felt there were areas that needed attention but was casting his vote to ensure May’s success as superintendent and for the success of staff and Morgan County Schools to work together in continuing rigor in instruction, imparting creative thinking skills, creating trust among employees and support among staff and encouraging cooperative decision-making.
Board member Laura Smith agreed with Gordon and was anxious to see where things would go with improvements continuing from May’s first year.
Board member John Rowland said that in his 40 years in education he has never seen a superintendent facing so many challenges in one year. May had to learn West Virginia Code, work to ensure the special levy passage and deal with an employee walkout and key staff leaving all while working on his doctorate.
“It’s amazing that you’ve been able to do so many things so well,” Rowland said of May.
Rowland said he had great confidence in May. He felt that this school year had gone very well and said that the board appreciated all that May has done.
“It really is an honor to serve in this capacity. We’ve got great kids. They deserve the best. The fundamentals are strong — the community, the district and the resources,” May said.
May noted that he has room to improve as a superintendent and the school district does as well. Steady and sustainable improvement is his goal, he said.
May said he deeply appreciates the faith, trust, guidance and support that the school board has given him and that he’s gotten great advice from all five board members. Morgan County has a uniquely qualified school board, he said – they have worked as educators and are well-rounded in business, which had attracted him to the school district.