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More than sports? Kaneland board members debate job descriptions

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT

SUGAR GROVE – Insisting other student endeavors should be considered at least as important as those by Kaneland’s sports teams, school board member Teresa Witt took issue with job descriptions that would shift some activities away from Kaneland High School’s athletic director.

Witt said a new job description for Kaneland’s athletic director appeared to strike the proper tone.

Witt, however, said she was unimpressed by a job description written for a different position, high school assistant principal for curriculum and instruction.

The Kaneland School District 302 Board unanimously approved the new athletic director job description at Monday night’s meeting at Kaneland Harter Middle School. But district officials will bring back new language for the other position at the next board meeting.

“Separate but equal doesn’t change the culture enough,” Witt said, adding that the language used to describe the assistant principal position “is not nearly as clear as the athletic director.”

The topic was one of many to come up at a school board meeting that lasted more than four hours. Among other topics:

• Kane County Board member Melisa Taylor and state Rep. Bob Pritchard, R-Hinckley, sought support for improvements at Route 30 and Dugan, Dauberman and Granart roads.

The officials said it is a safety issue.

• There was a discussion about class sizes, with officials examining the potential cost of bringing down the numbers at schools in the district.

• Board members heard of plans for middle school Spanish that would offer Spanish 1 in eighth grade, making it possible to ultimately complete a fifth year of Spanish in high school.

The board did take action on the athletic director position.

Superintendent Jeff Schuler indicated that interviewing for the position is underway.

And board members didn’t have issues with the job description for that position.

The assistant principal would lead planning for student activities and establish and build partnerships related to activities and student life.

That description marks a shift in responsibilities, but is not the addition of a position.

The activities component had been part of the function of the athletic director, and that would shift to the assistant principal for curriculum and instruction.

Witt read off the first item of the athletic director job description, “keep the administration informed of the important accomplishments, needs and concerns in all areas of the operation of the total athletic program.”

She said there was “nothing nearly that strong” in the other job description. She also took issue with focus groups associated with the project, saying “it appears to me that there wasn’t anyone who wasn’t a sports person” in the groups because if there were, she said, there would have been a push to be sure activities were on the same level as sports.

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