Details aired on superintendent proposal

Published: Wednesday, May 21, 2014 at 11:15 AM.

“All elections affecting the school district tend to draw employees into the politics of the election,” he said.

Blanton said that terms of a contract between the school board and the superintendent are negotiated, and generally run three years, with provisions for termination, buyout, sick leave, and such. He said that while candidates from within Florida may seek ways to remain on the state retirement system, those from out-of-state generally will negotiate an annuity or some other retirement option.

Overall, the cost of an appointed superintendent is expected to run more than that of an elected one, depending on education and experience, Blanton said.

Asked about the effect of a switch from elected to appointed on academic performance, Blanton said he has not seen a pattern. “I thought I could find a difference and I have not been able to find a significant difference whether student test scores differ between elected and appointed,” he said, while noting that Florida scores tend to outpace those in the other two states that still elect superintendents.

Blanton said he knew of only one Florida district to have switched back to an elected superintendent. He said Lake County went from elected to appointed, then back to elected, and six years ago went back to appointed. “It’s the only one I know of in 39 years,” he said.


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