Photo by Jon Anderson
Kathy Murphy 2-13-17
Hoover schools Superintendent Kathy listens during a Hoover school board meeting on Monday, Feb. 13, 2017.
Hoover schools Superintendent Kathy Murphy received an “above average” evaluation for the second year in a row tonight.
Murphy, who came to Hoover in June 2015, received an overall 4.4 out of 5 score from Hoover school board members in an evaluation that was shared publicly at tonight’s Hoover school board meeting.
A score of 3 meets expectations, while a 4 is considered above average and consistently demonstrating high levels of performance, and a 5 represents excellence.
While the school board’s average score for her was 4.4, she also received 4.2 ratings from both a group of 22 people who report to her and a group of 29 stakeholders in the community, said Tim Morgan, a retired superintendent from Sheffield City Schools who presented the evaluation on behalf of the Alabama Association of School Boards.
All the evaluation scores were compiled by AASB, so Murphy could not see how any specific individual graded her. Board members’ evaluations were shown separately, but the board members were numbered and not named.
“These are very good scores,” Morgan said. He does quite a few of these evaluations and “this is the best I’ve seen.”
Murphy’s highest scores from school board members among 10 categories were for professional development (4.7), financial management (4.6) and communication and interpersonal skills (4.6). Her lowest scores were for facilities management (4.2), educational leadership of the schools (4.3), personnel management (4.3), community relations (4.3) and management of pupil personnel services (4.3).
Her direct reports rated her in 30 areas. Her highest scores there were 4.6 for: actively seeking resources, financial and otherwise, for schools and the system; setting high standards for administrator, staff and student performance; and speaking and writing clearly, correctly and coherently.
Her lowest scores were 3.8 for promoting the use of technology in all aspects of schools and the system, and providing support to staff in utilizing technology.
Other stakeholders in the community rated Murphy in 14 areas. Her highest scores from stakeholders were 4.4 for taking a leadership role in improving education, serving as a liaison between schools and community agencies and seeking sufficient funding for the system.
Her lowest scores from stakeholders were 4.0 for leading the use of technology effectively to deliver programs and services and in system management and 4.1 for implementing policies and programs relating to student behavior and discipline, ensuring proper maintenance of school facilities and property, and applying technological knowledge to areas of responsibility.
School board President Stephen Presley said the positive evaluation for Murphy did not surprise him at all. “You do a great job — could not be happier to have you as our superintendent,” he told her during tonight’s school board meeting.
Murphy said there is always apprehension when other people are critiquing you, but she finds them valuable. It helps the school system be successful when everyone is “singing from the same sheet of music,” she said.
Murphy said she definitely sees technology as an area where she can improve, and she believes she needs to do a better job with professional development and meeting with people individually and not just in groups.
Presley tonight recommended the board extend Murphy’s contract an additional two years beyond its current expiration date of June 30, 2018. That would give her three more years from this June. The board is scheduled to vote on that contract extension in March.
Presley did not recommend any increase in pay for Murphy. She was hired with a $195,000 salary in June 2015 and, though she did not request it, recently received a 2 percent raise to $198,700 in conjunction with raises approved by the Legislature. However, other administrators across the state were authorized to receive a 4 percent increase.
In other business tonight, Murphy announced the school district would begin charging people 25 cents per page for physical copies of public documents. In cases where extensive research is required, the cost could rise to 50 cents per page, she said. People who request electronic copies of documents will not be charged unless extensive research is required to provide the documents, she said.
This fee is needed due to the extensive number of public records requests the district receives and the amount of time and resources it takes to fulfill those requests, Murphy said.