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New Orchard Farm Superintendent Will Make $170,000

Board of Education approved a contract with Thomas Muzzey after interviewing three candidates.

The new Orchard Farm Superintendent Thomas Muzzey will receive a three-year contract with a starting salary of $170,000. 

The Board of Education unanimously agreed to hire Muzzey last week after interviewing three finalists, including an internal candidate. Muzzey is currently serving as Superintendent of Warrenton School District. 

"He was very impressive," Board member Joe Bushdiecker said. "He's got experience for one thing. And he had ideas we were interested in." 

In addition to his starting salary, Muzzey will get a possible raise between 0 and 5 percent in 2014 and 2015. Current Superintendent Dan Dozier's salary for 2012-13 school year was $203,057. 

Muzzey will receive 20 days of vacation annually and the district will pay for membership in three professional organizations. Muzzey's first day at Orchard Farm will be July 1, 2013. 

The district paid the Missouri School Boards Association $11,900 to help them conduct the search for a new superintendent, winnowing a group of 32 candidates down to just a few. 

More than 350 community members and staff responded to a questionnaire about what sorts of attributes they'd like to see in a new superintendent. Honesty and integrity were among the top requirements. 

Board president Elmer Dwyer, who has been on the board for 27 years, said the board members are sad to see Dozier retire because he's helped the district with finances and student achievement. 

"We were looking for someone who could continue that tradition and that achievement," Dwyer said. "(Muzzey) is very technology oriented. He had extensive experience in finance."

Dwyer also noted that the Warrenton School District has been using Singapore Math, which Orchard Farm started using in the 2011-12 school year. 

Dozier plans to retire at the end of the school year, in part to spend more time with his family, and because of a change in the Missouri teacher retirement system. 

Dozier said Muzzey will be a great addition to the administrative team and the district. 

"I think he'll connect well with the folks here at Orchard Farm, our staff and folks in the community," he said.  

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