Fairfield Ledger

Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Oct 18, 2017

Pekin to share superintendent with Tri-County

By DIANE VANCE | Jul 03, 2014

PACKWOOD — The Pekin Community School Board agreed last month to share its Superintendent Dennis Phelps with Tri-County Community School District in Thornburg.

Tri-County schools superintendent Alan Meyer retired at the end of this year.

Phelps will split his duties between the districts separated by a county line and 32 miles.

“Pekin will hold the contract,” said Steve Copeland, Pekin school board president. “Our board had good conversations about this idea and both district school boards held a joint meeting and had very open discussions.”

Copeland said both districts will gain benefits, including financial, from the sharing agreement.

“Our board tries to be proactive with our finances,” said Copeland. “Dennis Phelps is the right person to make this work. He’s excited about it; we’re all excited about it.”

Copeland said the specific schedule is still a work in progress.

“Fortunately, the two districts don’t have the same school board meeting dates, so no one has to change that,” said Copeland. “Dennis said he’d like to spend the whole day Friday prior to our Monday school board meeting date in the Pekin district, and vice versa with Tri-County. Otherwise, I believe he intends to spend parts of each day in both districts.”

Copeland said the board and administrators also have discussed a second-in-command when Phelps is physically not present, but the outcome isn’t decided yet.

“We’re still working out options,” he said.

Copeland said he thinks Tri-County school district approached Pekin and Phelps.

“They were having discussions about sharing teachers and classes, and this subject came up,” said Copeland.

Phelps just completed his first year as superintendent in the Pekin school district.

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