The Sag Harbor School District Board of Education will vote on Monday, May 11, on the appointment of Jeff Nichols as the district’s next Superintendent of Schools, the district announced in an email on Thursday. Mr. Nichols has been the principal of Pierson High School for two decades and was named interim superintendent of schools following the resignation of Eleanor “Ellie” Tritt in April.
Mr. Nichols had previously served as acting superintendent in November and December after Katy Graves announced she would leave the post prior to her January 2020 retirement due to medical reasons. During both instances where Mr. Nichols served in dual roles, he did so without an additional salary.
The contract to be voted for on Monday night is for five years, during which is annual compensation will increase from $233,435 during the 2019-2020 school year to $265,000 per year in his new role.
“He shares the goals of the board and the community to educate the whole child to his/her fullest potential,” said district officials in their press release announcing the board vote. “His commitment is evident by the fact that graduates of Pierson High School have gone on to attend highly regarded colleges and universities or pursue their vocational career goals with the skills needed to be successful.”
Under his new appointment, in addition to serving as Superintendent of Schools, Mr. Nichols will continue to serve as Principal of Pierson High School temporarily.
“This will allow the district to minimize disruption to students during these unprecedented times,” said the district in its release. “In addition, the district anticipates realizing certain cost savings by having him fill both roles while the COVID-19 pandemic continues to require remote learning.”
“Over the years, Jeff Nichols’ commitment to put students first has earned him the trust of students, parents, colleagues and community members alike,” said Board of Education President Jordana Sobey. “He possesses a strong commitment to fiscal responsibility along with a heightened awareness of education issues both locally and on a national level, and has demonstrated the ability to view the future through the lens of a leader. His institutional knowledge of our school district and positive relationships with our community will continue to be a critical asset as he transitions into his new role.”
Mr. Nichols’ upcoming appointment will be the culmination of a lengthy and in-depth search process, which began in fall 2019 conducted by School Leadership LLC, a national professional education search firm the district has used in past superintendent searches.
“I would like to express my sincere appreciation to the Board of Education for the confidence they have shown in me,” said Mr. Nichols. “I enjoy working in Sag Harbor and consider it a privilege to work with administrators, faculty and staff who are talented and dedicated to preparing our students for the future. I feel especially fortunate to work with students who are kind, compassionate and willing to work hard to achieve their goals. We have much to be proud of and I look forward to a future filled with new opportunities for success.”
The upcoming board of education meeting will take place on Monday, May 11, 2020 at 6:30pm via zoom videoconference. To register, visit sagharborschools.org.