Dist. 304 hires next Junior High Principal

The United School District 304 has hired their next Junior High Principal.

Last night the school board approved hiring Chad Robertson, who currently serves as a teacher at the Mercer County school district.

Robertson will be taking over the Junior High when Principal Chris Schwarz takes over at the High School following the retirement of current principal Amy Schmitz.

Superintendent Jeff Whitsitt tells WGIL that Robertson will be their “principal in waiting” during this next school year.

“So he’s going to come and he’s going to work with Mr. Schwarz [during the 2020-21] school year and then that’ll free Mr. Schwarz up to have time to come work with Mrs. Schmitz so that basically we get a transition year for both principals.”

Whitsitt said the district had 14 applicants when the position opened up and they were able to bring that number down to 8 and then to three finalists before the board members chose Robertson.

Robertson was a graduate of the Warren School District, one of the three districts that consolidated to make up District 304.

The board also got some good news last night regarding additional Health/Life/Safety funds that

Superintendent Whitsitt says that the district has more cash for Health/Life/Safety work because the Junior High School’s roof is coming in significantly under budget.

“We are up money. We sold $6.5 million worth of bonds for [Health/Life/Safety purposes.] This Junior High roof that we’re doing this summer we estimated at [ around $1.2 million] so we bonded at $1.2. The bid came in at $760,000 so we’re a little bit better than $500,000 to the good on that project alone.”

Whitsitt says that the board will continue discussions over the next several months to determine what additional projects can be done.

The roof project at UJHS was approved last night for $762,097

In other action, the board approved some minor increases to fees in the district, including Drivers Education, school lunches, and basketball officials fee.

Whitsitt said many of these fees hadn’t been increased at all, and with the cost of things rising, these fees have to rise too.

Finally, the school board approved the 2020-2021 school calendar.

Teachers will start on August 17 while the student’s first day will be August 19. The school district will give students a full week for Spring Break and school will wrap up on May 25 with five emergency days that could push the final day of classes to early June if needed.

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