WATERTOWN — The Watertown Board of Education, meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 30, reviewed the superintendent’s contract and performed interviews for the director of curriculum and instruction position.

The board offered a brief moment of silence for Tyler Palmer, a recently graduated Swift Middle School student who passed away in July.

After the moment of silence, Superintendent Rydell Harrison gave his report and alerted the board of various appointments and reappointments for positions in the school district.

The board discussed the facilities of the town’s schools and possible maintenance to be performed before the school year begins.

The board went into executive session to discuss the superintendent’s contract and interview two candidates for the director of curriculum and instruction position.

During the executive session the board discussed pending litigation.

After the session, the board opened the meeting for the public again.

The board unanimously voted in favor of the new superintendent’s contract.

The new contract will last until June 2022 and give Dr. Harrison a two percent raise, setting his new salary to  $163,200.

“[The salary increase] will move Watertown from the second lowest superintendent salary in our district reference group to the third lowest,” said Board Chair Leslie Crotty.

There are 24 towns in Watertown’s district reference group and they are a similar financial make up to Watertown.

“Although Watertown’s superintendent wages do have a way to go, this is another step in the right direction. We must continue to work to provide competitive salaries for the top job in our district,” added Ms. Crotty.

She believes that keeping Dr. Harrison is important for the stability of the district, especially since he has shown a deep commitment to students and the community.

Dr. Harrison thanked the board for accepting the new contract.

The board voted to choose a candidate for the district’s director of curriculum and instruction.

They unanimously voted to appoint Lisa Fekete as the district’s new director of curriculum and instruction. Ms. Fekete expressed her gratitude to the board for selecting her.

Those interested in learning more about the board meeting may view the meeting minutes at https://whs.watertownps.org/o/watertown-public-schools/browse/57064.

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