BCSC promotes pair of educators

The Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp. has promoted two educators for new leadership positions within the district.

Chad Phillips, 42, the district’s director of title services since 2015, will replace Vaughn Sylva, who will be retiring at year’s end as assistant superintendent for financial services.

Gina Pleak, 44, who has been principal at Clifty Creek Elementary since 2014, was promoted to replace Phillips, with both of those changes to take effect July 1.

The appointments were approved unanimously during Monday night’s BCSC school board meeting.

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Sylva, 65, who has been with the Columbus-based school district since 2002, recently announced his retirement plans. To facilitate the transition, Sylva will work with Phillips until his retirement takes effect, said Jim Roberts, BCSC superintendent.

In his new role, Phillips will be involved in developing budgets, preparing financial reports and putting together expenditure projections for the district, among other duties.

Phillips began his BCSC career in 2004 as social studies department chair at Columbus North High School and was promoted to assistant principal at Central Middle School the following year.

In 2009, Phillips became principal at CSA Lincoln Elementary, before being selected as director of title services for BCSC in 2015.

Roberts credited Phillips’ experience in all areas of education as an asset for the position.

“He will manage the dollars we need to provide services to kids,” Roberts said.

Phillips said he’s looking forward to his new role, noting that one of his top priorities is to ensure stable funding for BCSC over time.

Phillips will earn $121,821 in his new role.

Pleak will be involved in preparing and submitting federal grant applications for Title I and Title III programs.

Title I funds come to states and districts based on a formula, which takes into account the number of low-income students and the statewide average-per-pupil expenditures, according to the BCSC website. Clifty Creek, Schmitt and Taylorsville have schoolwide Title I programs in the district, the site said.

Title III provides language instruction for limited English-proficient students, according to the Indiana Department of Education website.

In addition, Pleak will provide leadership for the district’s i-Care program, which is a before- and after-school program for students in prekindergarten through grade 6, which provides activities and homework support.

She also will support English as a Second Language, Bright Beginnings and prekindergarten programs. Bright Beginnings is a childcare center located at the McDowell Education Center and serves children 6 weeks old to age 3, according to BCSC’s website.

Pleak began her career with BCSC in 2013 as principal at Mt. Healthy Elementary School before transferring to Clifty Creek as principal the following year. She previously served as Title I coordinator for the Scott County School District 2, where she taught first and fifth grades.

Roberts said Pleak’s prior experience with Title I programs made her a good fit for the position.

Pleak said she is excited to learn and grow as an educator and sees her new position as a way to work with more students and schools in the district. She said part of the challenge she will face in her new role is evaluating what the state Legislature may do with prekindergarten funding.

“To have her to be able to join us at the leadership level, the cabinet level of our corporation, from that perspective is valuable for us,” Roberts said.

Pleak will earn $103,814 annually in her new position.

Chad Phillips

Chad Phillips began his career with Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp. in 2004 as social studies department chair at Columbus North High School before being promoted to assistant principal at Central Middle School the following year. In 2009, he became principal at CSA Lincoln Elementary School before being selected as director of title services in 2015.

He has a master’s degree in secondary education and an administration license from Indiana University in Bloomington and is currently working on his doctorate degree at IU in school administration.

Gina Pleak

Gina Pleak has worked for the Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp. since 2013, when she was hired as principal at Mt. Healthy Elementary School. She transferred the following year to become principal at Clifty Creek Elementary School. Before her arrival at BCSC, she taught first and fifth grades for Scott County School District 2 while serving as the district’s Title I coordinator. She also served as principal at Waldron Elementary School from 2006 to 2013.

She has a master’s degree from Indiana University Southeast in elementary administration and supervision and recently completed her doctorate degree at Indiana State University in educational leadership/administration.

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Matt Kent is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at 812-379-5712 or mkent@therepublic.com