The Board of Education of the voted 5-1 to retain the position of adminstrative assistant to the board of education.
Board Director Rick Salamon was the lone vote against keeping the position. Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal was finishing the 2012 legislative session in Jefferson City and did not make it to Thursday's meeting.
Charlotte Tatum, the current board assistant, is retiring this summer. She reports to the board of education.
According to the district's job description, the administrative assistant is "responsible for attending all Board meetings, posting public notice of all Board meetings, preparing agendas, recording minutes, coordinating Board correspondence and responding to Sunshine Law requests."
Salamon said while he had the highest regard for Tatum, he didn't feel the position was critical in a district University City's size.
"I don't think a district of our size warrants a full-time position," he said. "Very few school districts have someone devoted to the board of education."
A few of the districts that have a full-time or part-time employee designated to assist the board of education include the City of St. Louis, Normandy and Riverview Gardens districts. Other districts have an employee record meeting minutes and act as board secretary.
Board Director Tom Peters objected to the issue being discussed in open forum and said personnel issues should be discussed in executive session. Salamon disagreed, noting that the board wasn't discussing personnel, but a position.
New Board Director John Clark said the role of the superintendent and the school board can be adversarial at times and having an impartial employee who works for the board could be advantageous.
Board members spoke of their desire to have the position filled before Tatum retires, allowing her to train whomever replaces her.
The essentential qualifications for the position are as follows:
- High School diploma, undergraduate degree preferred
- Computer proficient and 60 CWPM
- Successful clerical experience, preferably in an educational setting
- Attention to detail, patience and the ability to work alternate hours
- Excellent customer service etiquette and communication skills
- Superior organization, interpersonal and communication skills