New Ankeny School Superintendent Bruce Kimpston 'Humbled and Honored' to Serve District
Kimpston, the district’s current associate superintendent of schools, has been with the district since 2009 and will replace outgoing superintendent Matthew Wendt.
During the three years he’s spent working for the district, Bruce Kimpston said he’s been impressed with all aspects of the Ankeny Schools community.
This is one of the reasons he’s “humbled and honored” to serve as the district’s next superintendent.
The school board voted unanimously at its regular meeting Monday to appoint Kimpston to the role, offering him a one-year contract. Kimpston, the district’s current associate superintendent of schools, has been with the district since 2009 and will replace outgoing superintendent Matthew Wendt.
“My experience reflects that people in Ankeny care about their schools,” Kimpston said Monday. “My focus will center on developing academic programming that continues to promote high student achievement, as well as providing opportunities for all students in the areas of activities, arts and athletics.”
Kimpston's first official day as superintendent will be July 1. His salary will be $182,250 a year.
Wendt, who submitted his resignation to the board last Wednesday, was not present at Monday night's meeting. Ankeny Patch later learned Wendt is using up vacation time, which is why he was not there.
At a special meeting last week, the school board voted 5-2 to accept Wendt's resignation, effective June 30. Prior to the vote, the board offered Wendt a three-year contract including a 3.25 percent salary should he stay with the district.
In a 4-3 vote also made during the special meeting, the board amended Wendt's current contract to allow him the option to receive a $176,000 transition allowance, equal to one year's pay without benefits, if he elected to resign.
Wendt chose to resign and take the transition allowance.
One day later, Wendt accepted a superintendent position with Oswego School District in Oswego, Ill. The District 308 school board offered him a three-year contract with a $225,000 annual salary.
Over the next few weeks, Wendt will work with Kimpston during the transition, said board President George Tracy.
Tracy said in a press release issued by the district, as all deliberation following Kimpston’s appointment was done in closed session, that the school board felt itneeded to move forward “decisively.”
“In order to attract and retain the superior caliber of staff and administration we have enjoyed in the past, it is necessary to have stability, with a high-quality leader in place,” Tracy said in the release.
Tracy also said Kimpston can ensure continuity in the district. Kimpston is familiar with the district’s upcoming split to two high schools since he helped oversee the process from the beginning.
"He is an outstanding leader with an excellent reputation, and he is familiar with our district and the upcoming transition,” Tracy said. “(He) will instill confidence both in existing staff and in applicants to the district.”
Tracy said Kimpston will start some of his duties as superintendent this week, including staff selection for at least two vacant district cabinet positions. Kimpston's own position, as well as associate superintendent of curriculum and instruction, will be the first two vacancies he addresses.
Kimpston said he hopes to have a replacement for his position identified by the end of this week. He also said he hopes to name a candidate to replace Susie Meade, current associate superintendent of curriculum and instruction, by the end of next week.
Before coming the Ankeny, Kimpston served as assistant superintendent of human resources for the Waukee school district. Throughout his years as an educator, he has served as an administrator, teacher, counselor, coach and sponsor.