Antioch School Board president donates annual stipend, training and travel allocation back to district

“I’m going to stand in solidarity with the employees” – Trustee Diane Gibson-Gray

Antioch School Board President Diane Gibson-Gray. Herald file photo.

By Allen Payton

In light of the recent layoffs to district classified staff, during the Antioch School Board meeting on Wednesday night, June 10, 2020, Board President Diane Gibson-Gray gave back her $10,800 in monthly stipend, and annual training and travel budget allocation, and suggested the board members do the same.

Each trustee receives $400 per month in stipend and annual travel and training budgets totaling $6,000 each.

“That would be $54,000 per year if we all do it,” she said.

“I’m not in agreement with that,” said Sawyer-White. “I have health care benefits for myself and my son. Other districts are considering cuts with administrators.”

She then mentioned wanting to complete governance training using her travel and training budget allocation.

“No one has completed governance training. There can be cuts, elsewhere,” Sawyer-White added.

“I’m just suggesting people volunteer. I’m going to do it on my own,” Gibson-Gray stated.

“This is kind of a tie back. This is why a budget study session would be important,” said Trustee Ellie Householder. “What impact $54,00 would have on the budget? I do not feel comfortable in doing that at this time.”

“When I put this on, we weren’t going to be in the position we’re going to be in June,” Gibson-Gray explained. “I’m just going to give mine back. I’m going to stand in solidarity if we’re unable to give employees raises.”

The board then moved on to other matters.

Approve Job Description for New Centralized Registration & Enrollment Technician

In other action, the board approved the job description of the new Centralized Registration and Enrollment Technician on a 4-1 split vote, with Trustee Crystal Sawyer-White voting against.

According to the staff report, the Centralized Registration/Enrollment Technician will assist parents/guardians and students with District programs, student assignment procedures and enrollment under the direction of a Director, Educational Services or other assigned administrator. The position will perform a variety of technical and specialized functions unique to the Centralized Enrollment Center.

The position will consolidate the responsibilities of all the school site registration and enrollment staff that were given layoff notices effective the end of July, due to the board’s vote at their last meeting on May 27, 2020. (See related article).

Sawyer-White was not happy with the creation of the new position and wanted the registrars for each school restored.

“It took my son over two hours to go through registration,” she complained. “We need the registrars back at the schools.”

To watch and listen to the complete Antioch School Board meeting on YouTube click here. For this discussion see the 2:09 mark of the video and item 11 of the meeting agenda by clicking here.

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