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NEXT SUPERINTENDENT MAY GET A SUBSTANTIALLY HIGHER SALARY

The next superintendent of the Tonawanda City School District may earn as much as $25,000 more than the current superintendent, the School Board decided during a special meeting Thursday.

The superintendent application process will begin soon and will continue until Dec. 15, listing the position with a salary between $110,000 and $120,000, with residency preferred but not required.

The current superintendent, Diana Greene, is expected to be evaluated by board members in November. She is in the last year of her contract with the district, which expires in July 2001, and is paid nearly $95,000.

The board in June decided to start the search process.

The board began the meeting by hearing a report from Vincent Coppola, an adviser hired by the board to aid in the search.

Coppola held meetings with various focus groups, consisting of teachers, students, parents and other staff, to survey qualifications for a possible candidate. Some of the main characteristics rated high by the focus groups included honesty, integrity and close relationships with members of the district and community.

"We're looking for somebody to get along with people, as well as be a leader in the community," said Board Vice President Anthony Melchiorre.

Coppola also advised the board on advertising a salary for the position. He said the average salary for a superintendent in New York State is in the $109,000 range. At this point, the top position in Tonawanda ranks 29 out of 30 among area districts in terms of salary. Coppola commented that the district has a reputation for hiring "on the cheap."

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