MABTON - A new superintendent begins work in Mabton today.
Sandra Pasiero-Davis of Yakima was sworn-in during a special meeting held at 8 a.m. Thursday morning. Pasiero-Davis was hired to replace former superintendent Kevin Chase, who resigned to take the head position at the Grandview School District.
Pasiero-Davis was offered the position as the head administrator of the school district after the school board reviewed the final two candidates in executive session for more than an hour Tuesday, July 6.
The school board decided to offer the position to Pasiero-Davis, who is employed by Educational Service District #105 as the director of the migrant education regional office.
With the ESD, Pasiero-Davis has worked directly with administrators, principals and teachers at 32 school districts in the state. She said her department makes sure school district employees at all levels comply with federal and state legislation for program implementation. She said her job with the service district was to ensure effective results for children.
As the director of the program, Pasiero-Davis said she has worked with budgets, audits and other details that have to do with administration.
"One of the most important things we do (at the ESD) is we make sure children are celebrated and recognized," she added.
As the new superintendent of the Mabton School District, Pasiero-Davis said her primary goal is to continue the work that is ongoing in Mabton.
She said in the past 15 years of working with the Mabton School District she has noticed a steady progress in student performance.
"People look for big jumps," said Pasiero-Davis. "The true measure is steady progress."
She hopes to continue to see steady growth in the future.
Finishing the hiring process, Guzman said today (Thursday) is a big day for the Mabton School District.
Thursday marked the end of a lengthy hiring process that started with 26 candidates. Guzman said the lot was narrowed to nine, then to four and finally two candidates.
The two finalists for the position were very close, said Guzman.
They underwent a day-long visit to the district, as well as questioning by the school board and by parents in a community forum.
The school board members went to the field to see which finalist would most meet the district's needs and continue the school district on the path they have already begun, said Guzman.
"It was a very hard decision to make," he added.
Pasiero-Davis signed the contract with the school district today, although Guzman said there are two contract inclusions the school board is considering.
Guzman said that the school board will be looking into adding an indemnity clause to the contract, which he said would protect the superintendent in case someone wanted to personally sue her for something the school is responsible for.
According to Guzman, the school district fully indemnifies all of its employees, but they will be looking into formally adding it to the contract. The school board has until March 2005 to make a decision on adding it to the contract.
The second inclusion the school board is considering, said Guzman, is an "...allowance of funds to help realize the goals of getting the superintendent in the district."
Mabton School District finance director Charlie Plesha explained that the board will be looking at providing Pasiero-Davis, who lives in Yakima, with moving expenses.
Plesha said that Guzman was given the authority at Tuesday night's meeting to negotiate the terms of the contract and adding a moving expense was one of the items that came up in the discussion.
"She wants to get into Mabton as soon as possible," Plesha added.
The Mabton school board will be investigating the two items, and, according to Guzman, will make a decision at a later time.