Roaring Fork Schools announce four May meetings to discuss superintendent housing
The Roaring Fork District school board is set to meet four times in May, where the board will further discuss the district’s plan to assist district superintendents with housing throughout the valley.
A topic that has resulted in hundreds of community members flooding district board meetings the past few months, the meetings will be closed to the public in person due to limited space. Those interested will have the opportunity to attend via the Roaring Fork District YouTube channel.
Proposed during a regular board meeting on March 15, many have had different opinions regarding the plan to grant both current and future superintendents $500,000 in housing assistance.
“One of the things we heard during the superintendent search process directly from our community that was incredibly important to everyone was that the superintendent lived within district boundaries,” board Vice President Jasmin Ramirez said during the meeting to discuss the proposal. “We really wanted to make sure that we were competitive in pay, and that we also made it clear to the future leaders of our district that we wanted them to be able to live in our district boundaries.”
With housing provided for district superintendents in similar areas such as Aspen School District and Telluride School District, the Roaring Fork District would use general fund reserves for down-payment assistance in hopes of attracting future superintendents to the school district.
No final decision is set to be made during the course of these meetings, Board President Kathryn Kuhlenberg said.
“This is really just a continued discussion,” she said. “There won’t be board action, and if this board or a future board determines that it’s appropriate to extend assistance to the superintendent, it would acquire contract amendments.”
While the Roaring Fork Valley comes at no cheap expense, the realization that the area is not what many consider affordable is also one that prompted the idea to assist superintendents in housing.
“This is an issue that needs to be addressed before we are put back in the position of having to hire again,” Kuhlenberg said. “Finding affordable housing is not an issue that anyone wants to deal with here, and we are making sure that we can put whatever future candidates in the best position to succeed in the valley.”
Excited for the work already done by current Superintendent Jesús Rodriguez, she knows how important the housing assistance could be.
“Dr. Rodríguez has done an amazing job so far.” she said. “We are extremely lucky to have him leading this district, and we have already seen him excelling in this role.”
The first of four meetings is set to take place on Thursday at the Carbondale District Office, 400 Sopris Ave.
Post Independent education and sports reporter Taylor Cramer can be reached at 970-384-9108 or email@example.com.
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