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Back to the Drawing Board: Mendham Township Superintendent Kris Harrison Moves On at End of June 2012

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Yesterday, I received the following eBlast from the Mendham Township Board of Education:
“It is with regret that the Board of Education informs you that Kristopher Harrison has notified us of his intent to end his tenure as superintendent of schools at the conclusion of the 2011-2012 school year. It is his desire to pursue a similar position at a K-12 district in New York state. Although we are deeply saddened that Dr. Harrison is leaving, we want to express our appreciation for his outstanding leadership during the past four years. Thanks to our administration, staff and community we are among the highest performing districts in the state. Please be assured that the Board of Education will move deliberately to name a highly qualified superintendent to continue our success. Our focus will remain on continuing to deliver an excellent educational experience for our children.
Thank you. –
Mendham Twp Board of Education”

Apparently, Dr. Harrison is exiting Mendham Township at the end of the school year in June for a K-12 poition with Irvington School District in West Chester, New York. I am sure it is an excellent opportunity for Kris Harrison after a solid run with Mendham Township and I wish him all the best. Since he came to us from Maplewood four years ago, we’ve seen attractively higher scores and strong achievement levels on statewide testing and a noticeable schooll environment of enthusiasm and cooperation among students, staff and administrators.

With his departure, school boards in Mendham Township and our neighboring districts (Mendham Boro and West Morris Regional High Schools) can consider a concept that should be familiar to most kindergartners — sharing. It’s rumored that Mendham Borough has already approached (and been rejected by) the Township about sharing a superintendent, since the NJ school budget cap on superintendent salaries at $135,000-$150,000 (due to the small number of students in the districts) will make it difficult for either school to hire high quality replacements when Mendham Borough super Janie Edmonds retires at the end of the school year.  In addition, the West Morris regional school board forced out their superintendent Anthony di Bautista late last year, so there are big vacancies at the top.

Whaddya think about sharing, Mendhams? 

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