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School board unanimously approves contract extension for Superintendent Eric Olson

The Monticello School Board has unanimously approved a three-year contract extension for Superintendent Eric Olson. The decision, coming after a thorough review and evaluation process, was made official at the Monday, Dec. 7 board meeting. Olson’s contract, which was extended with no pay increase, will now run until the summer of 2024.

With two board members set to end their terms at the end of this month, the board felt it was their duty to complete the evaluation process on the superintendent prior to that.

Superintendent Olson catches up with students at Eastview Education Center. “The current board has had the most time to review Superintendent Olson's work performance, ensuring that he had a fair and thorough review process,” said Board Chair Jill Hoffman.

Hoffman, who along with Melissa Hanson, will be ending their tenures as School Board members this month, said the board’s evaluation resulted in high marks across the board. The board chair pointed to the way Olson has handled the COVID-19 pandemic, including the expansion of Nature Based Education, as one of many ways that the superintendent has delivered innovation and excellence to Monticello School District.

“He has shown passion, dedication, outside of the box thinking, and has brought an exceptional work ethic to our school district,” said Hoffman. “We have seen this through his handling of his position in unprecedented times. He has worked through the Covid 19 pandemic to deliver a multitude of avenues to meet the needs of the families of this community.”

Olson was hired for the position in the summer of 2018 after years in various positions around Monticello School District, including most recently as the principal at Eastview Education Center. His passion for the district was one of many factors in leading him to suggest his zero percent pay increase to the board.

“I just love being a part of this school district and community,” said Olson. “I’m grateful for the opportunity that I’ve already had and I’m inspired by the incredible work of so many around me. I really appreciate the positive feedback from the board and their faith in me to continue moving Monticello School District to a place of sustained excellence.”

With their vote of approval on Monday night, the board made clear that they believe in both the present and future direction of ISD 882 under Superintendent Olson.

“He is doing an exceptional job.  We feel he will continue to assess our district to monitor and adjust as needed.  We are living in unprecedented times and to see his ability in handling the day to day adjustments assures us that he will be able to handle whatever may come at him in the future,” said Hoffman. “Our wish is that he continues to do what he does with the passion he brings to our district, while caring for himself as we would like him around for a long time to come.”