Hinsdale High School District 86 has hired two executive search firms to fill three vacant administrator positions on a temporary basis.
In addition, the district will hire a part-time communications specialist to draft a communications plan for the district.
The School Board voted unanimously Aug. 28 to hire The Chatfield Group, based in Northbrook, and Hazard, Young, Attea and Associates, based in Rosemont.
A representative from each firm was at the specially called meeting and explained they had spoken to qualified individuals who are ready to fill the positions.
The Chatfield Group will fill the human resources director position through the first semester, for $720 a day, calculated to be 81 working days from Sept. 9 to Jan. 17.
Hazard, Young, Attea works primarily with schools and education professionals and has a person ready to work in the district’s business office for $1,050 a day. The new hire will work alongside the interim business manager Gary Lonquist, who was hired on a short-term basis in July, when Jeff Eagan left the district.
“There’s enough to do in the business office,” to keep both employees busy, said acting Superintendent Bruce Law, noting the budget not yet approved, and the preparation of the annual tax levy is still ahead.
The new employees are expected not only to handle day-to-day operations, but also to recommend ways to improve the procedures in the business and human resources departments.
Hazard, Young, Attea also will hire a person to help with curriculum, as Law, the assistant superintendent for instruction, has to split his time between his usual responsibilities and filling in as superintendent.
The person hired for the curriculum department is expected to work for just 30 days, at $1,050 a day.
“Those are the going rates, what people expect in those jobs,” said Steve Humphrey, vice president of Hazard, Young, Attea.
Law said he also think it’s important to have someone promoting and publicizing district achievements and activities. The school principals do a good job reaching out to their individual school communities, Law said, but no one is promoting the district as a whole.
He wants the communications person to craft a plan that takes advantage of the new forms of electronic media to let people know about all the good things going on in the district. The plan would then be implemented by existing staff, Law said.
There is no intention that the communications job would become a full-time position, Law said. He proposed Hazard, Young, Attea find a suitable person to work 15 days in the district for $750 a day.
Law said he first tried to fill the positions himself by calling people he knows directly, but realized he does not have the time to work as a temporary staffing agency. By hiring the executive search firms, the district is paying a premium, Law said, but he believes the value gained is well worth the expense.
The new employees will report to Law, but if any of them are not satisfactory, it would be the executive search firms who would have to replace them.
For the days they work, the new employees will cost the district more than the prior administrators who did those jobs, Law said.
But the district already has saved money by having several of the positions, such as the human resources director, vacant up to this point. When those savings are factored in, the new staffing plan costs less than if the administrators who left had stayed on and worked through the summer and first semester, Law said.
School Board member Kay Gallo protested the short 24-hours notice board members were given for the special meeting. When asked, School Board President Claudia Manley said she did not know if there would be the necessary quorum to hold the meeting when she set the date.
Board members Victor Casini and Ed Corcoran were not at the meeting, but participated and voted remotely.