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Jacobus meets the mark in job review

School District 833 Superintendent Keith Jacobus enters the final year of his contract with an affirming performance evaluation.

Jacobus met expectations over the past year, School Board Chairman Ron Kath said in summarizing the recently conducted annual job review.

As top administrator for South Washington County Schools, Jacobus was praised for his professional accomplishments, his visibility in schools and the community and for other administrative work. He earned an overall evaluation score of 3.7 on a 1-to-5 scale. The score demonstrated that the board feels Jacobus is meeting expectations, Kath said.

“The board also is very excited for Dr. Jacobus to begin his third year,” he said during the evaluation summary Aug. 7.

All seven board members met with Jacobus for the closed-door evaluation July 24. In that assessment, he earned a score of 3.7 for work toward his three goals of the past year. Those included passage of last fall’s school levy; implementation of the district’s strategic plan; and determining a new process to update and maintain district policies.

Voters approved two of three ballot measures last November. While the third levy question — a request for money to buy land — failed, the board applauded Jacobus’ effort in developing what Kath said was a successful communications campaign during the levy and for being committed to publicly reporting how referendum revenue is spent.

Jacobus credited administrators, teachers and staff and the community for achievements of the past year.

“I’m very pleased with the collaboration that we have in the system,” he said, “and certainly I’m given … a lot of credit that’s due to the team.”

Kath said the board was pleased with Jacobus’ work toward his goals; his positive attitude during an administrative transition in recent months; use of the district’s “service matrix” that is applied during the budget process; his visibility in school and public events; and other accomplishments.

The recent transition involved the resignations of six cabinet-level administrators this spring and summer.

Jacobus received constructive feedback in two areas — governance and communication. Board members want more input in agendas for their meetings. They also want him to write editorial submissions to the Bulletin newspaper on behalf of the district, and to actively communicate with staff to “minimize the rumor mill during transition.”

Jacobus’ contract expires in June 2015. Kath said it likely would be the end of this year before contract renewal discussions would begin.

According to his contract, Jacobus received a 2.25 percent raise this year and earns $186,100.

Scott Wente

Scott Wente has been editor at the South Washington County Bulletin since 2011. He worked as a reporter at other Forum Communications newspapers from 2003 to 2011.

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