HOISINGTON — A Hoisington USD 431 administrator whose contract was not renewed earlier this year has since been reinstated for another year to some, but not all, of the positions he previously held. Following a meeting where patrons voiced support for Bob Brungardt, the school board held a special meeting on April 12 and voted to extend his contract as assistant principal for the district. However, someone else will serve as the district’s activities and transportation director for the 2021-2022 school year.
Back on March 8, the school board made the initial decision not to renew Brungardt’s contract as assistant principal, activities director and transportation director.
That prompted a mass turnout of school staff and community members in support of Brungardt during a public comments session at the board’s regular meeting on April 5.
Prior to the public comments session, board president Don Fisher spoke to the gathering at the April 5 meeting about public reaction to the board’s decision on Brungardt’s non-renewal.
“I’ve read numerous emails and texts and have been approached several times by people about this,” Fisher said. “And that’s okay, that’s what I signed up to do.”
He added, however, that some of the responses to the board’s March 8 decision to not bring Brungardt back altogether were menacing. “But I’m not happy with some of the things I hear going on or are being said,” said Fisher. “It breaks my heart when I hear about threats being made to the school board and that some of our students are being brought in as pawns against other people. We are adults and we need to act like adults.”
Following Fisher’s remarks, a handful of individuals were given the opportunity to express their concerns about Brungardt’s situation.
“Our district has many strengths and Bob Brundgardt is one of them,” said Marsha Williams, math teacher at Hoisington High School. “His role as assistant principal means he’s covering not just the high school but the other campuses in our district.” Williams said covering every campus pulls Brungardt away from the high school campus almost on a daily basis. “He’s also seen at the middle school dealing with a variety of discipline issues,” said Williams. “He has high expectations but at the same time, he’s caring with his discipline and takes time to develop relationships with his students. We come to you today to ask you to reconsider your decision to terminate Bob. We believe he will not only continue to meet expectations but exceed them.”
Following public comments, the board went into executive session to discuss non-elected personnel but took no action following the session.
At a special board meeting held April 12, the board offered the district assistant principal position to Brungardt while the 7-12 activities director position was opened to applications.
The decision was made to establish greater involvement by Brungardt in the district’s academic mission, said USD 431 Superintendent Patrick Crowdis.
“The decision was made to split the position Mr. Brungardt had held in the past to help all involved to be successful in their respective positions,” Crowdis said. “Mr. Brungardt will be involved with academic responsibilities and aiding the other administration staff as needed.”
According to Crowdis, the new activities director will oversee all of USD 431 extracurricular activities and assist in athletic and activities transportation. In addition to his duties as superintendent, Crowdis will oversee the district’s transportations operations for the 2021-2022 school year.
“We are pleased to continue our professional relationship with Mr. Brungardt,” Crowdis said. “He is a wonderful part of the USD 431 administrative team. He brings a heart for seeing students succeed in all areas of their lives.”