Madison school superintendent gets rare 5-year job contract

A Butler County superintendent recently received a five-year extension of an employment contract, a length that is rare for this region but gaining in popularity statewide.

Madison Schools Superintendent Lisa Tuttle-Huff, who was hired by the district’s governing school board in 2018, now has a contract through 2024.

Three-year contracts were the norm for most southwest Ohio school superintendents, but the president of the Madison Board of Education said members wanted to guarantee continuity in the school system’s top job.

“This agreement will allow our district to maintain stability in key leadership positions long term while continuing our commitment to financial stability with the taxpayers’ dollars,” said Board President David French.

MORE: Madison Schools to move grades within district’s K-12 building

Tom Ash, director of governmental relations for the Buckeye Association of School Administrators, said that “while three-year contracts may have been most typical in the past, we are seeing increasing numbers of longer-term contracts.

“These could reflect continuity for school construction projects or oversight for multi-year strategic plans, mostly they seem to reflect a perceived need locally for stability in leadership.”

Ohio law allows local school boards to issue contracts for up to five years.

Tuttle-Huff’s contract will continue to pay her a base salary of $110,000 for each year of the contract, which is among the lowest pay rates among area superintendents.

According to a recent review of some superintendent contracts in southwest Ohio and Northern Kentucky by the Journal-News’ media partner WCPO-TV, the average base annual salary for superintendents among the 20 largest school districts is $164,304.

The rural Madison school system is one of the smaller districts in the area with an enrollment of about 1,500 students, which is smaller than some other Butler County high schools.

Tuttle-Huff said she appreciates the contract extension coming after her first year as Madison’s superintendent and understands the board’s reasoning behind making the agreement through 2024.

Tuttle-Huff said the extension was “based on my work ethic and scope of work performed over the past year.”

“There was no raise associated with my contract extension. I still am compensated at $110,000 a year. I have enjoyed having an influence in the lives of our students and making a positive impact on education,” she said.

“And I want to be able to look parents in the eye and say we have done everything we can to equip their child for whatever their purpose is in life,” said Tuttle-Huff.

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