New RPS 205 hires not getting unanimous support - – Rockford’s News Leader

New RPS 205 hires not getting unanimous support

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School Board Member Lisa Jackson School Board Member Lisa Jackson

Rockford Public Schools is financially set for the next year and administrators have made a couple new hires, but not everyone backs the additions to payroll.

School board members unanimously passed the 2013-2014 budget. According to Chief Financial Officer Cedric Lewis, it's a completely balanced spending plan. A couple items that aren't getting unanimous support have to do with two new administrators. The Board of Education approved hiring a new Executive Director of Budget & Purchasing, as well as Jammie Poole, of Chicago, as Auburn High School's new principal. Poole's supporters say he can bring stability to Auburn.

Both items passed with a six-to-one vote. Lisa Jackson voted no each time. Her opposition stems from contract negotiations between school district paraprofessionals and nutritional services workers and administrators. Employees are demanding higher wages for their work. Jackson thinks the district's putting its money in the wrong places.

"With both of these positions we are bringing these individuals in very close to the top of the pay scale and iIve expressed concerns before that it concerns me when we continue to bring individuals in with high salaries, yet still we have employees who work for us who don't make a living wage." -she announced during Tuesday's meeting.

Jammie Poole's contract starts July 1st.

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