Lakota superintendent gets new 5-year contract, 13% raise

Lakota Schools Superintendent Matt Miller this week received a new contract into 2025, a raise and praise from the school district's governing board for the work he has done in modernizing the school system. (File Photo\Journal-News)
Lakota Schools Superintendent Matt Miller this week received a new contract into 2025, a raise and praise from the school district's governing board for the work he has done in modernizing the school system. (File Photo\Journal-News)

The leader of Lakota Schools got a raise last week, and the school board members who oversee his administration of the district said it was deserved.

The $22,100 raise for Superintendent Matt Miller came with a new contract that has him employed through July 2025. If Miller has his way, he told the board, he’d like to stay even longer.

“I feel very fortunate to be at Lakota and can think of nothing better then to retire from Lakota,” Miller told the Lakota Board of Education.

Members voted 4-0, with board member Michael Pearl absent to a death in his family, to approve the new contract and raise of about 13% to a base salary of $192,000 beginning Jan. 1.

Miller’s salary will increase with yearly raises of 1.97 percent each August during the course of the employment agreement.

The 49-year-old Miller, who was hired in 2017, now earns a base salary of $169,900 annually.

Since his hiring in 2017, the Greater Cincinnati native and former superintendent of northern Ohio’s Mentor Schools has led a transformation of the district toward a rapid adoption of digital learning technology and techniques.

And using social media such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, Miller has propelled Lakota into a previously unseen before level of school community outreach via the internet.

ExploreLakota schools continues its digital push with a new way to connect to families

In 2018 and 2019 the district also distributed thousands of free laptops to students as part of the district’s push to modernize learning and his efforts – and those of the districts – have earned national recognition from organizations championing digital learning.

ExploreVideo & story: Lakota schools took its next big technology step on Monday. Here’s what it means for students.

Lakota Board of Education President Brad Lovell said “leadership starts at the top.”

“Over and over and over again we are reminded how lucky we are to have Mr. Miller’s leadership of the district,” Lovell said after the board’s vote.

And, he added, “probably the most important, his leadership through the (coronavirus) pandemic.”

The Lakota Schools, which has an operating budget of $184 million, is the largest in Butler County and the largest suburban district in southwest Ohio with 22 schools enrolling 16,800 students from West Chester and Liberty townships.

According to the Association of American School Administrators the median salary of superintendents with enrollments ranging from in charge of districts with enrollments ranging from 10,000 to 25,000 students was $195,000.

“Lakota is the largest district in the state to maintain in-person learning since the start of the year. Without the vision, leadership and culture he has built in the district, this would not have been possible,” Lovell said.

Fellow school board member Lynda O’Connor said “we really appreciate all the hard work you’ve done.”

Miller deflected the praise and credited his administration’s staff, teachers and school employees for the district’s changes.

He said “I’ll work as hard as I can to go great things for our schools.”

Journal-News media partner WCPO-TV contributed to this story

In Other News