BERRIEN SPRINGS — Berrien Springs school board members remain very pleased with the performance of Superintendent Dave Eichberg, voting Thursday to give Eichberg a salary increase and salary extension.

Earlier this month board members had heard Eichberg’s self-evaluation and then conducted their own evaluation of him. Eichberg has been with the district for 11 years and is starting his fifth year as superintendent.

Board President Peg Bormann said the board rated Eichberg as “effective” after rating him in several categories and adding in scores for progress toward districtwide goals, plus the percentage of students meeting target scores on national tests. The five category ratings made up 65 percent of his total score, the district goals 10 percent, and student scores 25 percent.

Eichberg was evaluated in five categories. He received 3.7 out of 4 for governance and board relations as well as community relations, 3.3 for staff relations, 3.8 for business and finance and 3.2 instructional leadership. Overall, he received a score of 3.5 out of a possible high score of 4. It was the same score as a year ago.

Board members said Eichberg made substantial progress on three of five districtwide goals and 65.5 percent of students met English language arts and math test targets. Bormann said Eichberg’s total score came out as a 3.0 out of 4 and is in the effective range.

“I wish we could include everything you do to juggle 23 different off campus centers and here,” she said. “You do that very well. Thank you sir.”

Board members extended Eichberg’s contract by one year, through June 30, 2022, and gave him a 2 percent salary increase – the same percentage increase that teachers are getting. Eichberg’s salary will be $146,128, when counting the 2 percent raise for the coming school year.

2019-20 Budget

The district expects to continue to be in good financial health, as evidenced both by the final amended 2018-19 budget and the proposed new 2019-20 budget presented by Business Manager Ellen Hasse. The district’s new fiscal year starts July 1.

Hasse reported that the initial small $31,000 surplus anticipated for the 2018-19 general fund budget has grown to a surplus of more that $1.7 million. Revenue will end the year at $50.04 million, while expenditures will be $48.3 million. The district’s general fund reserves will end the year at $11.1 million, equal to about 23 percent of expenditures.

She noted that the district has made a policy of having reserves of at least 15 percent of general fund expenditures, and has been able to meet or exceed that goal in most of the last 10 years.

The 2019-20 budget calls for a $1.3 million deficit on a budget of $53.37 million in revenue and $54.67 million in expenditures. Hasse said the new budget assumes a $100 per student increase in state aid and total on- and off-campus enrollment of 5,791 students.

She told board members that the budget deficit could be erased and turned into a surplus if the state aid per pupil foundation grant goes up by $150 instead of $100, off-campus enrollment increases by 150 students, and the budget is underspent by 2 percent. That would result in a $1.88 million surplus, she said.