KENDALLVILLE – In a constant struggle to find replacements when teachers are absent, East Noble is increasing its daily salary for those who want to cover lessons.
Replacements have always been difficult for schools to find and retain, but the problem has been severely exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic over the past two years, as teachers could be sidelined for days, even weeks because of the virus.
There were times during the 2021-2022 school year when districts had to close simply because there weren’t enough staff available to fill every classroom.
Therefore, in hopes of getting more people to come forward in the future – and with inflation eating into everyone’s wallets – the East Noble School Board chose on Wednesday night to raise the replacement salary at $125 for sub-teachers and $85 for substitute teaching assistants, down from $100 and $75, respectively.
At Wednesday’s brief school board meeting, board members noted that it was summer, so it is the current season for school district staff.
Wednesday’s staff sheet was filled with dozens of resignations, reassignments and new hires as East Noble tries to fill out its roster of teachers for the upcoming 2022-23 school year.
In other business on Wednesday, the school board:
• Approved the following personnel changes:
Resignations — Caleb Tedder, director of the Alternative Learning Center; Kristen Pozorsi, kindergarten teacher at Avilla Elementary School; Sylvia Bloomfield, second-grade teacher at Avilla; Kristin Baermann, resource teacher at Rome City Elementary School; Kim Guinn-Krebs, Physical Education at the City of Rome; Ashley Strasser, fourth-grade teacher at South Side Elementary; Kendaya Mapes, special education teacher at Wayne Center Elementary; Haylie Miller, teaching assistant at East Noble Middle School; Ciara Pulliam, interpreter at ENMS; Emily Schneider, teaching assistant at East Noble High School; Holly Singleton, concession manager at ENHS; Kim Krebs, first-year volleyball coach at ENHS; Kaitlyn Longenbaugh, unified flag football coach at ENHS; Amanda Skorupa, Head Girls Coach at ENMS; Darren Sible, Winter Production/Assistant Theater Director at ENHS; Chelsey Thangvijit, robotics coach at ENHS; Kelsey Mapes, academic super bowl coach and assistant spell bowl coach at ENHS; Dawn Strasser, Assistant Box Office Worker and Theater Concessions Coordinator at ENHS.
• Dismissals — Cassandra Lash, teaching assistant at ENHS; Carlee Banks, teaching assistant at South Side
• Reassignments — LaShone Harris from fifth-year City of Rome professor to sixth-year language arts at ENMS; Cynthia Gudewicz, from teacher’s assistant at the Wayne Center to preschool teacher’s assistant in Avilla; Janelle Owens, from sixth-grade teacher at ENMS to second-grade teacher at Avilla; Allison Miller, from teaching assistant at the City of Rome to sports and fitness instructor at the City of Rome; Kelsey Mapes, from special education teacher at ENHS to special education teacher at the City of Rome; Dara Childers, from part-time sign language interpreter at Avilla to full-time sign language interpreter at ENHS; Kathy Adams, from food service assistant in South Side to caretaker in Rome City; Kevin Irons, to receive an additional $1,000 for his athletic duties at ENMS, retroactive to the 2020-21 school year and going forward.
• New recruits — Nick Rexroad, teaching assistant at ENHS; Dawn Stump, eighth-grade science teacher at ENMS; Taylor Peters, kindergarten teacher at Avilla; Elexis Stocksdale, fourth grade teacher at North Side; Abby Cole, teaching assistant at Avilla; Breanna Brunges, teaching assistant at South Side; Suanna Nolan, special education teacher at the Wayne Center; Dana Larson, office assistant at the Wayne Center; Lynnae Lamb, teaching assistant at the Wayne Center; Nolan Iron, summer maintenance staff; Madison Fought, Teaching Assistant at ENHS; ENHS summer school teachers Amy DeWitt, Brian Rexroad, Britain Isaacs, Jessica Hull, Andrea Heller, Jacob Yoder, Cindy Joest, Cliff Hannon and Nolan Richhart; Melissa Pilz, K-2 department head at Rome City; Jennifer Stohlman, director of the directory and the newspaper of the city of Rome; Karen Gandy, head of the mathematics bowl at the city of Rome; Cheryl Herber, Department Head for Grades 3-5 at the City of Rome; Julie Fuller, head of the National Honor Society and the City of Rome Student Council; Kari Rathke, Technical Site Coordinator at the City of Rome; Allison Miller, intramural and robotics coach at the City of Rome; Randy Risedorph, assistant baseball coach at ENHS; Nick Rexroad, assistant women’s football coach at ENHS; Andrea Heller, Head Track Coach at ENMS; Beth Munk, seventh-grade volleyball coach at ENMS; Eric Beck, robotics coach at the Wayne Center; Debbie Sherck and Melissa Spencer as South Side Student Council Co-Sponsors; Teresa Kleopper, head of the South Side student department; Kim Anderson, Patron of the National Honor Society at the Wayne Center.
• Bid farewell to Cathy Wright, Secretary of the Office of Administration, who is retiring from district service after three decades.
• Approved the hiring of Wagner-Meinert as the contractor for the replacement of HVAC controls at East Noble High School for a total cost of $295,200.
“It’s definitely higher than we’d like to see, but we’re seeing it across all construction sectors and all industries,” said Brian Leitch, chief financial and operations officer.
• Reappointed Debbie Blaine to the Kendallville Public Library Board for another four-year term.
• Approved salary increases for administrative staff and teachers according to the details of their current employment contracts.