Fayette Board of Education declines new teacher category

Tue, 06/02/2009 - 3:33pm
By: Ben Nelms

The Fayette County School Board made a change in the school system’s organizational structure Monday night, approving an organizational chart that divides many of the duties of outgoing Assistant Superintendent for Instruction Lyn Wenzel between Deputy Superintendent Fred Oliver and Assistant Superintendent for Operations Sam Sweat. Wenzel’s position at central office will not be filled.

The vote on the measure was unanimous and came with little discussion.

Superintendent John DeCotis said that Oliver would be responsible for Transportation, Pupil Personnel Services, Human Resources, School Nutrition, Exceptional Children’s Services and Facilities. Sweat will have responsibility for Secondary School Improvement and Professional Learning, Elementary School Improvement & Learning, Lafayette Education Center and the After School program.

Wenzel’s 2008 salary on the state website was listed at $125,794.

Wenzel, who is retiring from the Fayette system, will reportedly be assuming a position with Georgia Department of Education.

Also at the meeting, board members declined to approve a job description for a new Teacher/Leader position on a 2-3 vote. Voting against the position were board members Bob Todd, Marion Key and Janet Smola.

Though it was a stand-alone position for consideration, the discussion pertaining to it became linked to the potential for not filling five vacant assistant principal positions that are currently not included in the 2009-2010 budget to be approved later this month. Filling those positions carried an estimated cost of $506,000.

The idea behind creating the Teacher/Leader position included having a teacher move to 50 percent teaching and 50 percent administration in five schools. Those schools may or may not be the ones where the vacancies currently exist.

The estimated cost of creating the five Teacher/Leader positions with additional supplements for their increased responsibilities and back-filling for the decreased classroom time with a half-time teacher totaled $185,000, though Comptroller Laura Brock said the cost could be $99,000 if other adjustments were made.

The discussion included numerous points relating to the cost of the proposal and the need to ensure that split job responsibilities were appropriate.

In the end, board members Lee Wright and Terri Smith voted in favor of approving the new job description while Smola, Key and Todd voted in opposition.

The new position, had it passed, might have been considered for additional uses in the future as other assistant principals resign or retire in the future.

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