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Board approves Huntsville City Schools Superintendent’s contract

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – The Huntsville City Schools Board of Education unanimously approved a contract for its new superintendent, Christie Finley.

Finley served as interim superintendent until the board chose her, without conducting any interviews with other candidates, as the new superintendent last month. She has been operating without a new contract since then.

Thursday, board president Elisa Ferrell announced that Finley opted to take a “lateral” salary move and not seek an increase with her new title. Instead, she will keep her interim salary of $178,000 annually.  Ferrell said that Finley’s contract will be reviewed each year because of this.

“I’m excited to have a contract. I’m just excited to be working still with Huntsville City Schools,” Finley told WHNT News 19. “I have to thank the team that I work with every day. That’s where the real work happens. We work well together. We collaborate. I’m excited just about the next steps in our district.”

“It is closely mirrored to the contract we had with Dr. Akin,” Ferrell said of Finley’s contract, but she noted that Finley would not be taking the car allowance Akin had.

Finley later shared that she also would not need the other extras, like moving expenses, since she currently lives in the area. She also doesn’t have incentives written in.

“I just asked the board to consider the interim contract I already had. I was very conscious of the fact that we are in a situation with our budget that we want to be good stewards of our money.  That’s just the choice I made.”

She added that she’s already looking forward, past the contract, and toward the best way to educate children.

“I just asked to keep the same thing, because it’s really not about those things, it’s about kids,” she said. “At the end of the day, I’ve been doing this for almost 27 years and I’m all about students and teachers. I’m very blessed to work in this district.”