Monday, August 18, 2008

No more funds...

Last month, the school board agreed to pay the superintendent an additional $1,800 a month for rent and utilities until his house in Chagrin Falls is sold. When Axner took over the position a year ago, he moved into an apartment in Dublin and his family stayed in Chagrin Falls so his son could complete his senior year. He spent weekdays here and tried to get home most weekends.

He put his home up for sale five months ago but it has not sold, board president Gwen Callender said. Axner moved his family into a rented home in Dublin two weeks ago and hopes to buy a house here once his Chagrin Falls home sells.

Kalson said everybody is "tightening their belts" in today's economy and she has a problem with the additional compensation. While she appreciates the $5.5-million in budget cuts Axner and district treasurer Steve Osborne found and the board approved, they included the elimination of elementary school library aides.

The $21,600 the board will pay Axner over the next year would pay for one aide, she told the board.

That is misleading, Callender said, because once the house sells the additional compensation stops.

After hearing from Kalson the board stands behind its decision, Callender said.

Nothing in Axner's contract required him to move here or move his family here, she said. The board recently gave Axner a near perfect evaluation, despite his commutes to see his family, "and we expect him to be even more effective as a leader now that he's moved them here É

"We will now have him down here full-time É which is a huge benefit for us," she said. The board plans to revisit the additional compensation issue next May if the house still has not sold.

(Read the full article here!)

Then a mere few weeks later the school board decides to discuss and vote to put a levy and bond issue on the November ballot. (full story here!)

Then I read the lengths some school distracts are going to to save money. (story here)


Are you kidding me? The superintendent should have to pay his own living costs. I can see making the deal to let his child finish his senior year of high school - but it was HIS choice to take a new job and WHO I ask is going to foot the cost of living increases all of us face. Groceries are more expensive, gas prices thru the roof, goods are costing more thanks to a weak dollar!

Why should I have to pay the superintendent's housing costs and pay for his 3% wage increase. Excuse me - but times are tough and he should have to eat it in his pocket book like everyone else. H is a pilot and I betcha when contract talks come around - the company will be looking for concessions again.

I plan to vote no on the levy - becasue I just do not think that the board has the best interests of the community at heart and I think it takes alot of nerve to come to us - asking for yet more money when they are willing to just give in and pay the superintendent more money. I am sorry his house has not sold - but that is a fact of life - sometimes things just do not work out as planned. If his contract stipulated that he had to move to Dublin - they maybe - but it does not - so he made this choice of his own free will and it should be on his own dime!

I moved here for good schools and they are great schools - but I also expect the school board to make solid business decisions and coming to voters asking for money in a down economic climate is irresponsible and unreasonable. Giving the superintendent a 3% raise and a cushy housing allowance when the rest of us are counting our pennies and tightening our belts is JUST WRONG.

While I do not want to see the students in this distract using old and out dated materials and not having enough enrichment activities - I think that some belt tightening would not hurt. Beside the levy and bond issue are all for the building of more classrooms and improvements to existing buildings. While this might impact the students down the road and I am sure the distract may at some point grow - growth in the next 5 years is not horribly likely with the downturn in the economy and the tightening of credit in the area of home mortgages.

I question the boards projections and I question their judgment asking us for these funds - becasue one thing is for sure - if funds are available they will spend it - as evidenced by their misguided decision to give the superintendent more money when in fact he does not deserve more money on top of his 3% raise. We should all be that lucky.

No comments: