BETHEL — Directors of the Bethel-area school system voted unanimously Monday night to extend Superintendent David Murphy’s contract for an additional year, to 2015.

The decision followed the board’s annual evaluation of Murphy’s performance. His salary, which is now $104,000,will likely be set in a couple of months. It has not increased for several years.

In other matters, the Regional School Unit 44 board approved a new school counseling and social work program. The revised plan required approval because of changes made two years ago that eliminated the elementary guidance counselor and replaced the position with a social worker. Currently, the school system employs a social worker who serves all three elementary schools, a social worker for grades 6 to 12, a guidance counselor at the middle school and a guidance counselor at the high school.

The board also approved spending $37,239 from federal stimulus funds to replace the accounting and personnel software at the central office.

Murphy said the current software is outdated. RSU 44 is one of only a handful of school systems in the state that has not updated its software program.

The board will begin working on the 2010-11 operating budget in January, Murphy said. He said estimated state aid should be known by February. He estimated that RSU 44 will receive about a half-million dollars less next year than this year.

Wednesday will be the students’ last day of school before the holidays. Classes will be in session for only a half-day.

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