School board extends superintendent’s contract

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Naugatuck Superintendent of Schools John Tindall-Gibson

NAUGATUCK — The Board of Education extended the contract of Superintendent of Schools John Tindall-Gibson on Thursday for another year.

Tindall-Gibson’s contract was due to expire June 30, but he will now serve until the same date in 2014 with the same pay, Chairman David M. Heller said. He has lead the borough’s school system since 2006. Tindall-Gibson makes $165,000 yearly.

“The board’s been pleased with the way things are progressing,” Heller said.

The board voted 6-3 on the contract extension, with members Glenn Connan, Dorothy Neth-Kunin and Diana Malone dissenting.

Connan cited the school system’s poor academic performance as the reason for his vote. The borough is one of the 30 lowest-performing districts in the state.

“We’re failing our kids and we gotta do better,” Connan said.

A contract extension was proposed in part because Assistant Superintendent Brigitte A. Crispino, who was promoted to the position to assist in the transition between Tindall-Gibson and his successor, decided instead to retire at the end of this school year, Heller said. She worked “almost around the clock” on the Alliance District application to get borough schools more money from the state, and now wants to spend more time with her family, Heller said.

The board decided to start the search process for a new assistant superintendent, who would fill in after Tindall-Gibson leaves, Heller said.

In the middle of a 2009 financial crisis when borough officials were calling for Tindall-Gibson to resign, he said he intended to retire when his contract expired on June 30 of this year. The school board last year extended his contract through 2013.

Tindall-Gibson, 65, said he changed his mind about retiring because of “some great things going on in the district.”

“It’s hard to leave,” Tindall-Gibson said.

In particular, he cited the project to renovate Naugatuck High School to mint condition, which will break ground this spring. Although the renovations will not be complete until 2015, Tindall-Gibson said he intended to retire when the latest extension was over.

The school board also voted to extend the contract of Business Manager Wayne McAllister, which was due to expire Dec. 31. McAllister will now serve until June 30, when his term as borough controller also expires.

“I’m looking forward to continuing to improve the operations of the Naugatuck public school system,” McAllister said.

McAllister earns a $20,000 stipend to serve as business manager, on top of his $89,000 salary as borough controller.