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Statement From Mark Williams Regarding the Proposed Extension to Superintendent Meria Carstarphen's Employment Contract

Austin, TX—The Board of Trustees of the Austin Independent School District (AISD) is scheduled to take action on a proposed amendment to extend the term of Superintendent Meria Carstarphen's employment contract by one year at the Monday, September 26 board meeting. On March 23, 2009, the Board of Trustees approved the employment contract of Dr. Carstarphen as the district's Superintendent for a four-year term commencing on July 1, 2009 and ending on June 30, 2013. The proposed amendment would extend the contract by one year to June 30, 2014. All other provisions, including compensation, remain unchanged. The board meeting begins at 6:00 p.m. in the Carruth Administration Center Board Auditorium, Room B100, 1111 West 6th St., Austin, Texas. While the actionable agenda item related to the superintendent's contract is scheduled for 10:10 p.m, the President's Update regarding the superintendent's evaluation is scheduled for 8:50 p.m. (This board agenda also includes two public hearings, an executive session of the Board and citizen's communications.)

Board of Trustees President Mark Williams released the following statement today:

"I am pleased with the work and leadership of Dr. Carstarphen. The proposed extension to her contract shows the Board's commitment to the direction she is taking the district, as well as the need for stability in district leadership to ensure continuity and ongoing focus to the tremendous work that still needs to be done. Nationwide, urban school districts that experience high turnover with their superintendents creates instability, which adversely affects district and student performance. Dr. Carstarphen is a strong leader, and has put together a capable team to tackle the various and complex budget, human capital and other challenges we will face in Austin for the foreseeable future. Therefore, I look forward to the Board's action on this proposed extension on Monday night so that we can make clear our commitment to Dr. Carstarphen, and her commitment to Austin ISD."

In response to the Board's proposed agenda item, Superintendent Meria Carstarphen released the following statement:

"I am delighted at the Board's show of confidence in what we are doing for the children of Austin Independent School District. I believe if we continue to prioritize our work, stabilize our plans around a proven set of standards and optimize our resources, there is no limit to what we can accomplish. I look forward to continuing our work to get our students ready for college, career and life in a globally competitive economy."

For more information, contact the Press Office at 512-414-2414.