Board approves superintendent contract

Board approves superintendent contract for Dr. Sirko
Posted on 06/05/2019
diana sirko headshot

Grand Junction, CO – Members of the District 51 School Board voted 5-0 Tuesday, June 4, 2019, to approve a superintendent’s contract for Dr. Diana Sirko. 

Dr. Sirko has served as interim superintendent of the school district since October 2018. While the board originally thought Dr. Sirko’s tenure would last through this summer, they quickly learned that her dedication, generosity, and the stability and experience that comes with more than 40 years of experience in education is irreplaceable. 

Board members asked Dr. Sirko months ago to extend her time as interim for at least one year, but ultimately decided more time – and permanency – was needed. The contract approved by the board on Tuesday night will change Dr. Sirko’s title from interim superintendent to superintendent and last for two years, with the option of a third year. 

“Even when we had a national search going on (in 2017), we didn’t have anybody (apply) with the skill set that Dr. Sirko has,” said Paul Pitton, vice president of the board. “It’s not just the skill set, her character and personality…she’s got that personality that she’s like a mother to every one of those kids out there. They all matter, and they have a superintendent that’s super visible in the community.” 

“We found the real deal. We don’t need to go spend $30,000 to do a national search to find what we already have,” Board Member Doug Levinson said. “I think it would set us behind, frankly, because (Diana has) done a lot of foundation-building in our community, and to start that over again would set us back.” 

Dr. Sirko’s new contract takes effect July 1, 2019, and includes an annual pay rate of $205,000 – the same amount paid to Dr. Ken Haptonstall in the first year of his contract as superintendent in 2017-18.

Dr Sirko's experience in education includes serving as superintendent of Roaring Fork School District and Aspen School District, interim superintendent for Falcon School District 49, deputy superintendent for Colorado Springs School District 11, and assistant superintendent for Fountain-Fort Carson School District 8. She has also served as deputy commissioner of education for the Colorado Department of Education, educational leadership MA program coordinator for Colorado Mesa University, and began her career in education as a teacher in 1975.

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