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Luedtke Named Superintendent of the Year

In his 31st year working in public education and his 13th year as a superintendent, Kyle Luedtke, Sevastopol School District superintendent, was named the Rural School Administrator of the Year.

The honor came from the 140-district Wisconsin Rural Schools Alliance (WiRSA). Luedtke is the 12th honoree since the inception of the WiRSA award in 2012, and the second Door County administrator since Southern Door’s former superintendent, Patricia Vickman, in 2015.

“Educational leadership connects the dots, creates relationships and brings together staff, parents and communities focused on leading the vision and mission developed by those education partners for the sole purpose of doing what is best for kids,” said Jeff Eide, WiRSA executive director. “Kyle Luedtke exemplifies these qualities and more, and I am very proud to recognize and honor Kyle as our WiRSA Administrator of the Year.”

Sevastopol School District Superintendent Kyle Luedtke. Submitted.

Mineral Point Unified School District Communications Director Joelle Doye initiated the nomination. She knew of Luedtke’s work while he served for six years as superintendent of a neighboring district in Benton. While watching daily Wisconsin Association of School District Administrators updates, she took note of his accomplishments during his seven years at Sevastopol.

Doye – who also serves as president of Wisconsin Schools Public Relations Association – along with Sevastopol school board president Lisa Bieri, wrote the nomination letter for Luedtke.

“It was definitely a joint effort,” Bieri said. “Obviously I was very aware of the many things Kyle has achieved and contributed at Sevastopol, including the building referendum approval. He’s very focused on student achievement.”

She said “achievement” doesn’t necessarily mean all students need high grades. Bieri said Luedtke emphasizes that “each student has the opportunity to achieve all that they can and have as many experiences in school that they can.”

She described Luedtke as an excellent communicator with the school board. In addition, she said he remains approachable and able to communicate with the public and with teachers comfortably, informally and in a straightforward manner, as necessary.

“He is an excellent financial manager for Sevastopol,” Bieri said. “When we hired him, that was one of my main focuses. We have a good, healthy fund balance, which we need. In fact, we’re going to be able to take another two years off of the original 20-year building referendum, as an example of how he manages the finances and keeps things in order.”

Bieri was referring to the district in September completing enough extra payments on principal ahead of time to remove years 20 and 19 off the debt from the $25 million referendum voters approved in 2018. That should save about $1 million in interest payments – thus far.

“He’s also very focused on his staff and personnel,” Bieri said. “He wants the best for them also.”

When asked what he considered his strengths as a superintendent and manager, Luedtke said he remains involved and aware of what’s happening within his district.

“When there’s an issue, I try to get it resolved,” he said. “If there’s a program that’s lacking resources, I try to get the right resources to those programs. And, if a program’s running well, I don’t monitor it as closely because I don’t have to.”

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