Jason Thompson (Marysville School District)

Jason Thompson (Marysville School District)

Major decision awaits Marysville’s interim superintendent

Jason Thompson has already been immersed in a proposal to restructure the two high schools.

MARYSVILLE — The Marysville School Board is preparing to search for a new superintendent and to make key decisions on district operations, including a possible reconfiguration of high schools.

The board on Tuesday named Jason Thompson as interim superintendent during this period of change.

Thompson, who had been deputy superintendent, has filled in since Becky Berg went on medical leave in January. Berg has been recovering after surgery to remove a noncancerous brain tumor. She announced in May that she would be stepping down as superintendent, calling her time leading the district of 11,000 students the highlight of her 32-year career in education.

The contract with Thompson expires June 30, 2019. He’ll make $199,712. If a permanent replacement for Berg is not selected before the end of the contract, it can be extended, according to the agreement.

In recent months, Thompson oversaw the collection of feedback on multiple district planning efforts, including a controversial proposal to restructure Marysville Pilchuck and Marysville Getchell high schools.

Students attend the school of their choice. Marysville Pilchuck is a comprehensive high school and Marysville Getchell has four schools on its campus: the Academy of Construction and Engineering, Bio Med Academy, International School of Communications and School for the Entrepreneur.

The change being considered would have two comprehensive high schools with enrollment based on where students live. It would make each school’s enrollment more predictable and decrease transportation costs. It also would eliminate the small learning communities at Getchell and necessitate decisions about how and where to draw new enrollment boundaries.

Thompson has not yet made his recommendation to the School Board as to whether the district should stick to the status quo or restructure the schools. A recommendation is expected before the end of the school year, at either the June 6 or June 18 meeting, district spokeswoman Emily Wicks said in an email.

The School Board’s decision on the high schools is expected in coming weeks, according to a district news release. The search for a new superintendent is to begin this fall.

Kari Bray: 425-339-3439; kbray@heraldnet.com.

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