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West Jefferson Hills superintendent gets raise after first 100 days of work

| Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017, 11:51 a.m.
Thomas Jefferson High School in the West Jefferson Hills School District.
Thomas Jefferson High School in the West Jefferson Hills School District.
Michael Ghilani was named superintendent of the West Jefferson Hills School District in Jan. 31, 2017. He most recently served as the Montour School District superintendent.
Michael Ghilani was named superintendent of the West Jefferson Hills School District in Jan. 31, 2017. He most recently served as the Montour School District superintendent.

West Jefferson Hills School District Superintendent Michael Ghilani is getting a $2,500 raise after successfully completing his first 100 days on the job.

Board members at a Sept. 26 meeting voted unanimously to approve increasing Ghilani's salary to $180,000 and resetting the start date of his five-year contract to July 1. The contract now expires June 30, 2022.

“It was actually part of my original contract,” he said. “If I satisfactorily completed my 100-day plan and achieved the original goals ... the contract would re-renew itself July 1, dependent upon a board evaluation of me, and that I would receive a $2,500 raise.”

Ghilani started work March 6 at a salary of $177,500 . His 100-day plan included identifying “imperative issues” in the district by holding stakeholder focus groups and communicating his vision for the district with school and community leaders during his first 30 days on the job.

Within 60 days on the job, he was to thoroughly review all district policies and construction documents, gain an understanding of the budget and financial outlook and review all contracts and agreements.

By 100 days, Ghilani, 45, was to identify the district's core values, reconfigure its central administration and construct and communicate goals with the community.

Ghilani responded by seeking feedback from numerous stakeholders in the district and conducted surveys to gather information to implement administrative and building goals for growth and year-to-year improvement. From this, he developed a three-year comprehensive educational plan for the district.

Two assistant superintendents also were hired in May to provide added support for teachers and administrators.

Board members rated Ghilani's 100-day performance as “proficient with distinguishing characteristics,” the second-highest rating, with some top marks.

“He has done an outstanding job. We're very pleased with his performance to-date. This renewal of the contract is a direct reflection of his commitment to the district and to the community,” board President Brian Fernandes said.

Stephanie Hacke is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.

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