Sullivan BOE gives Rafalowsi a 4.47 evaluation on scale of 1 to 5

Rick Wagner • Jun 9, 2016 at 9:19 AM

BLOUNTVILLE — Sullivan County’s school board is pleased with the first-year service from Director of Schools Evelyn Rafalowski, based on an evaluation that gives her a composite score of 4.47 on a scale of 1 to 5 among 19 standards. That puts her roughly halfway between a 4 (exceptional) and a 5 (distinguished). The rest of the scoring scale was 3 (accomplished), 2 (proficient) and 1 (developing).

“That’s an excellent evaluation,” said Board of Education Attorney Pat Hull, who compiled the composite score from individual rankings by the seven school board members and revealed it at the June 6 school board meeting.

Her highest score on a standard was a 4.92 on standard 6 in the planning and assessment section, which is “develops plans for effective allocation of fiscal and other resources.”  Her lowest score was a 4 on standard 16 in the communication and community relation, which is “establishes and maintains effective channels of communication with board members and between the schools and community, strengthening support of constituencies and building coalitions.” 

Hull’s tallies do not identify individual school board members but rather assign them a number from 1 to 7. Of those, board member 4 gave Rafalowski 5s on all 19 standards, while board member 5 gave her 17 5s and two 4s. Board member 1 gave her four 4s and 15 5s. The lowest score she received from any board member on any standard were 3s, which came from board members 3 and 6. Board member 6 did not give a score on one standard.

“Thank you very much. It’s more than an evaluation for me. It’s an opportunity,” Rafalowski said, emphasizing that her heart is with the students and she loves to see students excel, like the Sullivan Central High School robotics team that made it to a world FIRST competition in St. Louis as a rookie team earlier this year. “It’s all about the students for me.”

Rafalowski  has spent 38 years in education in Sullivan County schools, including time as a teacher, school administrator and in central office.

Rafalowski was appointed interim director in mid-2015 after Director Jubal Yennie took the position of superintendent of a school system in Laramie, Wyo. Soon thereafter, the board named her the permanent director. Yennie’s last evaluation by the board in September 2014 was a 3.97.

Yennie helped spearhead the facilities study that resulted in a proposal for a new high school and new middle school. The board will meet in called session Tuesday at 4:30 p.m. to consider contracts with the architects to design those two facilities.

The facilities proposal generated kickback from the community and some board members. Member Todd Broughton, who in the August election faces off with fellow incumbent Randall Jones because of the redrawing of school board district lines, maintains the plan is flawed and disagrees with turning Sullivan South High School into a county middle school and selling Sullivan North High School to Kingsport City Schools for $20 million. Kingpsort would convert it to a middle school, which is part of the county facilities plan and the separate but parallel KCS facilities plan.

The four pages of the evaluation can be viewed in images attached to this article. 

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