Education board renews superintendent’s contract

The Board of Education unanimously voted to extend Superintendent Karen Baldwin’s contract through June 2020 at its Oct. 10 meeting.

“I think this is a way to communicate to the staff and to the town that we are behind you,” board member Doug Silver said to Baldwin, shortly before the contract extension went to a vote.

In her memorandum written to the board requesting that it extend her contract, Baldwin said managing the work of the school district is “complex.”

“It’s the work I want to be doing,” Baldwin said. “It’s the work of taking a really great community and making it better.”

Baldwin started her position in July 2015. She previously worked as the superintendent of the Suffield school district. During her administration, the board has considered several initiatives with potentially far-reaching impacts on the community — including a proposed plan to move start times later at the high school.

After the motion passed, board chairwoman Fran Walton leaned in conspiratorially to Baldwin, who was sitting beside her.

“You’re locked in till 2020,” Walton said in a dramatic whisper so the room could hear.