According to seethroughny.net, Ripley Central Schools Superintendent Karen Krause earned $123,000 in 2012. While that is not out of line with what other superintendents receive in salaries in this county, starting next year the workload of the Ripley schools chief decreases drastically.
We might add, however, that as superintendent of Ripley the workload was never that much to begin with when you consider the enrollment is 320. That amount is the least of the 18 districts in the county.
Currently, the school is going through a major transition - one that will benefit both the community and its students.
Starting in September those in grades seven through 12 will be tuitioned to Chautauqua Lake Central School. There, these students will receive additional options for courses, athletics and extracurricular activities. Gone will be the Ripley secondary students biding their time in three study halls per day due to the small class sizes and lack of course offerings.
So while about 165 students make a move to Mayville, the other 155 or so remain in the Ripley district. Does the community - after this decision - need to keep a $123,000 superintendent who is fully compensated at close to $175,000 annually? For only kindergarten to grade six?
Ripley's Board of Education has been making tough decisions for the past five years. It tried to merge with Westfield and is in the process - after a close community vote - of moving forward with an educational alternative that makes sense to everyone involved, including Chautauqua Lake.
But the issue that no one wants to bring up is the elimination of the highest paid position in the district. Why not?
Taxpayers are already seeing a savings in the tax rate due to the tuitioning for next year. Why not take this reduction a bit further by eliminating the superintendent position.
When the district begins next year, only 160 students - or less - will be in the Ripley building. In most districts throughout the county, state and nation, that number translates to a different title that comes with less compensation: building principal.