The Wisconsin Rural Schools Alliance (WiRSA) is proud to announce the selection of its next Executive Director, Jeffrey Eide.
Eide is currently the superintendent for the Blair-Taylor School District. He received a Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Winona State University, where he also earned his superintendent certificate. During his 34 years in education, Eide has taught in the classroom, coordinated gifted and talented programs, served as associate principal and principal for a total of 13 years, and is currently completing his eighth year as a district superintendent.
“Our rural school districts are the backbone of education in Wisconsin,” according to Eide. “I have a deep passion and drive to advocate for our rural schools. I am looking forward to working collaboratively to reinforce, strengthen, and enhance WiRSA as an organization,” Eide adds.
WiRSA began in 2008 by a group of CESA and district leaders who recognized that rural school districts were not well-represented or significantly discussed at the state level. Known for its steadfast advocacy for rural schools and high-quality annual conference, the organization officially formed in 2012 and began accepting memberships. Today, the alliance has 240 members, including public schools, CESAs, colleges and universities.
WiRSA is governed by a board of directors representing each region and comprises teachers, administrators, CESAs, the Department of Public Instruction, colleges and universities. Jeffrey will be replacing current Executive Director, Kim Kaukl, who has filled the role since 2015.
“The entire board of directors is enthusiastic about Eide’s appointment,” according to Mike Haynes, the board’s current president. “He understands the challenges and opportunities facing rural educators and has the passion and will to continually build relationships and partnerships across the state,” Haynes adds.
Among Eide’s first tasks will be to lead the alliance as it prepares to host the National Rural Education Association conference in Green Bay this October.