Wenatchee Interim Superintendent Offers Plan For Year
There's a more clear picture of the short term future of Wenatchee schools with interim Superintendent Bill Eagle's presentation of his vision.
Eagle indicated he won't be offering major changes in policy, but instead will back the already established pathway forward.
“Because I am serving in an interim role, my plan focuses primarily on providing stable leadership during this transition period,” said Eagle during Tuesday’s school board meeting.
Eagle was appointed to oversee operations at Wenatchee schools while the school board finds a new permanent superintendent. Previous superintendent Paul Gordon resigned at the end of June over family issues that required he move back to the Midwest.
Eagle comes to Wenatchee schools just as the district is going through a financial strain.
"Another priority for me is to work closely with our fiscal department, our HR team, our cabinet team, union leadership, the board as we begin to adjust our budget to better align with our decreasing enrollment trends over time," Eagle said.
Enrollment is down and is projected to fall further over the next four years, which is leading to the loss of revenues and the downsizing of expenditures.
The budget for the upcoming school year was introduced earlier this month, with the district projecting a decline of 700 students and 60 certified employees over the next four years.
Enrollment is expected to shrink from 6,989 in the last school year to 6,289 in 2025-26. Revenues are expected to fall from almost $123 million in the upcoming school year to about$119 million in 2025-26.
Eagle's vision shows aa emphasis on the promotion of existing programs while not disrupting the status quo.
Eagle named his 10 priorities while serving as interim superintendent. No. 1 on the list is maintaining organizational momentum of current programs, followed by enthusiastically promoting existing improvement plans.
Other priorities include handling surprises and working satisfactorily with the board.
Eagle's vision also includes a timeline for action steps that are divided into four 3-month intervals.
The final time period from April-June 2023 includes graduations and retirement celebrations, but lists a top priority of working with the school board and cabinet on a transition plan for the new superintendent.
Eagle also said he'd be involved in the launch of a strategic plan established under previous superintendent Gordon.
"Primarily how I plan to spend my time making myself available to the community and staff, and moving the strategic plan forward and some of the other initiatives that we have," Eagle said.
Eagle is contracted to work as the interim superintendent through June 31, 2023.