The Seguin ISD superintendent received a vote of confidence from the board with a one-year extension on his contract and a 4% pay increase.

Following a lengthy executive session behind closed doors, the board voted unanimously in favor of the raise and contract extension for SISD Superintendent Matthew Gutierrez.

“I am thankful for the board’s faith in me,” Gutierrez said.

Board president Cinde Thomas-Jiminez said the board is pleased with the work Gutierrez has done and looks forward to seeing what he will continue to do.

“We feel as though Dr. Gutierrez has stuck with his strategic plan and he is really bringing forth a lot of confidence in our teachers by providing a lot of professional development,” she said. “A lot of our new rigor and relevance framework, I think is going to really improve student learning at each and every campus.”

In addition to bringing the Rigor and Relevance programing to the district, Seguin ISD has also added a new crew of educators to its roster, Thomas-Jiminez said.

“We’re also very happy with the quality of teachers that we’ve been able to attract this year,” she said. “We’ve got a lot of seasoned teachers from other districts and I think they are going to make a big impact bringing in the knowledge that they have and we’re really looking forward to this school year.”

Throughout the year, Gutierrez said he’s had the honor of working alongside the board and showing members first hand the work that is going on at the district and campus levels.

“It gives them an opportunity to see me in action as a leader, so that when this time comes to conduct an evaluation, they can certainly make a fair assessment,” he said. “I think that we as a team can believe in the work that is outlined in the strategic plan and we’re getting into the second year where we’re really going to be digging in deep to do that work. We are not going to change directions.”

Thomas-Jiminez said there are some challenges that Gutierrez will need to address, but the board has confidence that he’ll be able to take them on with the assistance of his leadership team.

“They’ve started very early already this summer with their administrators’ trainings and Dr. Gutierrez has explained to them that he has very high expectations for improvement and I think we’re going to see,” she said. “I think everyone is game. Every single teacher in the district, every single administrator, and it is really going to make a huge impact on student achievement.”

Gutierrez said he is ready for the challenges that lie ahead and is already working on ways to improve the district as a whole, including STAAR results.

“We have seen some dips in implementation, but we feel strongly as a team — myself and the team that I work closely with here — that this work is going to pay off,” he said. “We just need to continue to invest in that work, we need to continue to build capacity in our teachers and our leaders and continue to move forward. This work is already making a difference.”

The increase in pay will bring Gutierrez’s salary up to $210,038 from $201,960.

Felicia Frazar is the managing editor of the Seguin Gazette. You can e-mail her at felicia.frazar@seguingazette.com .

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