The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

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July 18, 2014

Conneaut’s soon-to-be former superintendent receives new job title

CONNEAUT — Conneaut Board of Education members on Wednesday night unanimously approved a new job title and duties for Kent Houston when he steps down as Conneaut Area City Schools superintendent at the end of the month.

Houston will become administrator on special assignment effective Aug. 1, the day Michael Notar officially becomes the district’s newest superintendent. Houston’s resignation due to retirement doesn’t begin until Dec. 31, but it is believed he will use accrued time to leave much sooner.

With the new title, Houston will oversee the district’s permanent improvement projects and the SPARC athletic complex taking shape near the football stadium, Cris Newcomb, board president, said after the meeting.

“(Houston) will serve as liaison to the new superintendent and will close projects out,” Newcomb said. “(The move) gives the new superintendent some flexibility. (Notar) will certainly be busy, and this will help with the transition.”

Houston will have an office in the Southeast building and will continue to draw his current salary per his contract. Houston will be involved in on-going projects only; any new projects will be spearheaded by Notar, Newcomb said.

Wednesday marked Houston’s last appearance as superintendent at a regular board meeting. Board member Suzanne Bernardini presented him a gift certificate from a local golf course and also a framed diagram of the SPARC layout, inscribed “Many thanks for all your work and dedication to Conneaut schools.” She told Houston the gifts were reminders of “the great work you did, especially on the SPARC project.”

Newcomb also praised Houston’s “hard work” on the sports complex, which includes a football and soccer fields and a track. Tennis courts are also in the plans.

Houston, a former CHS educator and principal, was hired as superintendent in July 2008.

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