Monday, May 6, 2013
Newly elected in April, Jeff Morrell said he doesn't want to worsen the district's budget gap by "stepping on the gas."
Updated May 8: The board member behind the single "no" vote on a pay plan that will increase the average salary for Rockwood Administrators told Patch Wednesday that his opposition is based on concerns over the district's deficit. Jeffrey Morrell said he agrees, in principal, that the district's employees need to be paid a fair and competitive salary, acknowledging a find by a Rockwood committee that its administrators ranked 21 out of 22 in terms of average total compensation among St. Louis County school districts. However, given the district's project $11 million deficit, Morrell said those raises need to be paid for with an equal amount of cuts so that they don't add to the red ink. "If we were going to go give them a raise, what …
Thursday, May 2, 2013
Also: How to realign the district's spending after the failure of Proposition S?
The Rockwood School Board will meet tonight at 7 p.m. following a closed session at 6 p.m. at the Crestview Middle School at 16025 Clayton Road in Ellisville. Here's a preview of some the items on the board's agenda.
Friday, April 26, 2013
The district's school board members selected Wildwood resident Darby Jo Arakelian to fill the unexpired term for Steve Smtih, who stepped down in March.
Calling it a very tough decision, the Rockwood School Board whittled a list of eight possible candidates down to one during a public meeting to determine who will fill the term of former board member Steve Smith, who resigned in March. By a vote of 4-2, the board selected Wildwood resident Darby Jo Arakelian, who will be sworn in on May 2, said she is looking forward to her tenure on the Rockwood School District’s governing body. “To say that the board faces challenges is an understatement, but instead of just voicing my concerns, I thought it was time to offer up my services and help be part of the solution,” Arakelian said. Arakelian will stay in the position for the remainder of Smith’s term, which expires next April. She holds a master…
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
The Rockwood School Board received tips on what they can expect during the process at a meeting last week.
The search for the next superintendent of the Rockwood School District is a process that could take months and cost around $10,000-20,000. That was part of the message delivered to the school board by Don Senti, Executive Director of the Cooperating School Districts of Greater St. Louis, who spoke to the board during a meeting April 18. The district’s current Superintendent Bruce Borches has accepted a contract to helm a district in Tennessee and his last day will be June 7. Chief Communications Officer Kim Cranston said the board invited Senti to provide them tips on how to move forward on hiring a new leader for the district and what they can expect in the months to come. “The board asked him to come in and just talk with them about next…
Saturday, February 23, 2013
The following opinion was submitted by Rockwood parent Anne Gassel and the watchdog coalition Rockwood Stakeholders for Real Solutions.
The School Board cannot forget its duty to speak for the public. The education system and the educrats who inhabit it are fully prepared to protect and perpetuate that system. There are layers of administration which are packed full of experts on education and finance whose sole purpose is to keep the system running. As soon as someone is elected to serve on the school board they receive “training” from the Missouri School Board Association. This training emphasizes how important it is to present a unified front to the public. Controversy is to be handled behind the scenes so that the board can appear confident and united in public meetings. Where would such controversy come from? It comes from people outside the system trying to get the …
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
The two incumbents on the Rockwood School Board are facing two challengers, and the Rockwood School District has provided brief profiles on all four candidates for the April 2 election.
The following information was provided by the Rockwood School District and is available on the district's website. The district also will host a candidate forum on March 5. Personal Information: I graduated from U.C.L.A. with a bachelor’s degree in 1989. I recently retired from Enterprise Holdings in Clayton, Mo. after serving for 23 years. While at Enterprise Holdings, I held positions ranging from Branch and Regional operations in several markets to Corporate Vice President in St. Louis for the past 12 years. Personal Statement: I’ve enjoyed raising two children in St. Louis and value the quality education they’ve received and are currently receiving from Rockwood Schools. I believe it is time for the School Board to begin the …
Friday, July 15, 2011
Results from a phone survey of Rockwood residents in June showed more people appear enlightened about financial issues in the district.
A phone survey of Rockwood School District residents in June shows some changes in the public's perceptions of the district's image and its financial outlook since the last survey in October. "The data indicates there is a growing awareness of the district's financial challenges among Rockwood patrons," said Rod Wright, president of survey company UNICOM-ARC, at Thursday's meeting of the Rockwood board of education. "They value quality, but don't appear to be connecting the dots yet between the costs of that value." School board directors commissioned the survey by the St. Louis-based market research company, which has worked with Rockwood for nearly 20 years. Rockwood communications coordinator Cathy Orta said the survey cost $19,750, …
Thursday, July 14, 2011
Rockwood School District taxpayers and parents get another chance to voice their opinions or ask questions at this evening's board of education meeting.
A group of 25 people prompted external interaction with Rockwood School District board members during their internal, annual retreat just three weeks ago in Eureka. Tension continues to simmer, however. Although the board's session planned for June 25 at the Administrative Center was not the typical type of school board meeting that includes a segment for "patron comments," Rockwood's directors broke from the agenda and took 15 to 20 minutes to talk one-on-one, or in small groups, with those who had come out early on a Saturday morning. Reactions to the exchange varied, with some guests indicating they were not satisfied with the short time for discussions, nor the type of responses they received to their questions. However, several said …
Monday, June 27, 2011
At the latest Rockwood School District board of education meeting, administrators announced a reversal in their prior decision in May to eliminate the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program. It now will continue in 2011-2012 year.
Decisions about ceasing a police officer-based drug education program executed in the Rockwood School District since 1988 were reversed at the June 16 board of education meeting. Reacting to public outcry expressed at two board of education meetings and through additional phone calls, e-mails and letters prompted when district administrators announced the surprise elimination of the popular Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program on May 12, Rockwood's drug education committee members now indicate they will approach the program's evaluation differently. Prior to a presentation at the June 16 meeting from the committee of administrators and principals, including some new members, Rockwood's board of education president Steve Smith…
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Patch interviews Rockwood School District Superintendent Bruce Borchers, the district's chief communications officer and board of education president to verify facts, timing and considerations about new hires that created public controversy.
Filling two, key Rockwood School District administrator positions vacant since the 2009-2010 school year prompted a blip of public scrutiny and comments. Many questions surfaced after Rockwood Superintendent Bruce Borchers recently filled those positions with two colleagues he previously worked with in a Minnesota district prior to taking the Rockwood helm. Critics, including St. Louis Post-Dispatch columnist Bill McClellan in a Wednesday piece, spotlighted that the same two professionals consulted for Rockwood this year, specifically assisting Borchers in planning the district's reorganization, which included the two jobs in question. This afternoon in a Eureka-Wildwood Patch exclusive interview, Borchers maintained that the two …