Sequim School District superintendent Rob Clark, right, discusses terms of his contract extension with the school board while board president Brandino Gibson listens on during the Jan. 21 school board meeting. Sequim Gazette photo by Conor Dowley

Sequim School District superintendent Rob Clark, right, discusses terms of his contract extension with the school board while board president Brandino Gibson listens on during the Jan. 21 school board meeting. Sequim Gazette photo by Conor Dowley

School board extends Clark’s contract

Board removes interim tag from well-liked superintendent

“Interim” no more.

Dr. Rob Clark is now superintendent of the Sequim School District, after Sequim’s school board of directors unanimously approved his new contract at the Jan. 21 board of directors meeting.

Clark’s new contract is for one academic year to keep him in place for the 2020-2021 school year, with a one-year option to be determined at the Dec. 7 school board meeting.

The board voted 4-0 to retain Clark for another year; director Jim Stoffer was excused with an illness.

Clark will be paid $155,000 for the first year of the contract, with the salary of the option year to be determined if and when that option is exercised.

“I feel great,” Clark said when asked about his reaction to the decision. “It’s an honor and a privilege to be a superintendent in my mind, and it always will be.”

Clark was initially hired as the interim superintendent in June 2019 after the departure of previous superintendent Gary Neal, and in the seven months since has drawn repeated praise from the school board for his work in the district.

With plans in motion for a bond measure planned for the November ballot, board president Brandino Gibson had previously indicated that he and other board members felt that it was the wiser course to keep Clark on-board to plan and oversee the bond drive efforts.

Discussions and planning for a new contract have been in motion since October, and Clark and his wife Linda have since purchased a house in Sequim after previously living in Port Ludlow.

A discussion about final terms in Clark’s contract during the meeting was fairly smooth, with only a few questions about various parts of the contract.

Before the discussion even started, Clark requested the removal of one clause in the contract regarding supplemental contract days, saying that it’s inclusion had been “a miscommunication.”

That removal solved most of the questions that board members had, though multiple members sought clarification over the handling of the cap on vacation days.

Vacation days ultimately wound up being a sticking point with Neal after he announced his resignation, having accumulated more than his contract allowed him to receive a payout for.

Clark assured the board that there would be no such problems with him, and the board members were satisfied.

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