Teachers are angry over a new administrative position that may be created at the Lorain County JVS.
“A director of marketing and communication would eliminate the position of the retiring Tina Salyer,” said instructor Eric Robson in an impassioned speech that started off an April 21 board meeting. “The past two times that an association member has retired, rather than replacing that member, that program was eliminated.”
As the president of the teachers’ union at the vocational school, he said the association will no longer tolerate losing its members for unnecessary reasons.
“We have always pounded the pavement in support of levies, but how can staff keep up that support when we keep losing teachers? If more positions are lost, we plan on filing an unfair labor charge against this board,” Robson said.
Superintendent Glenn Faircloth said teachers can’t afford to let the levy fail.
“If that levy doesn’t pass, I would have to eliminate 50 percent of the staff at this school,” he said. “A new director of marketing and communication is not designed to eliminate (Salyer’s) position. I have not approached this board to eliminate her position. The new director would act as a PR person for JVS. We’ve never had a PR person in the district. It would be a person who could stay out in front of sensitive situations when they arise, rather than us reacting and playing catch-up after they happen.”
Discussion was tabled after questions regarding the wording of the new position’s duties and compensation were raised by board members Ayers Ratliff of Wellington and Rex Engle of Amherst.
“Can anyone here tell me how much this new position will make?” asked Ratliff. “As a board, we need to maintain transparency. How can we continue to ask taxpayers for more levy money if we don’t maintain transparency?”
“Have we considered hiring an outside firm with a new set of eyes to determine cost?” asked Engle. “The description of this new job being given tonight doesn’t seem to match up with the paperwork we’ve been given. I think that that those things need to be worked out before we move forward.”
The salary will be determined by experience, although no range has been set at this point, according to Faircloth.
“Our retiring marketing person did not do PR for us in a sense of being a spokesperson. It wasn’t her job,” he said. “As a union member, she was not allowed to know intimate details of issues that arose with other union members, and in turn, could not act as a PR person on those issues.”
Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-647-3171 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.
Jonathan Delozier | Civitas Media Board members debate the creation of a new director of marketing and communications position at an April 21 meeting.