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School board members approved the resignation of seven licensed employees and the hiring of 13 new staff members at a special meeting on Thursday evening.

Twelve licensed teachers and a district technology coordinator were hired during the meeting.

Licensed staff resignations:

• Jennifer Burgemeister, intermediate school special education

• Tara Harris, intermediate school reading interventionist

• Jacob Cockcroft, middle school speech language pathologist

• Stephanie Goddard, high school special education

• Jason Jones, high school principal

• Kristin Pankey, Allen Elementary School first grade

• Stephanie Sikes, Southside Elementary School third grade

Staff hires:

• Michelle Sauer, Northside Elementary School speech language pathologist

• Carol McDonald, Northside Elementary School special education

• Dawn Hammonds, intermediate school sixth grade math

• Brad Leach, middle school eighth grade science

• Bethany Freeman, middle school speech language pathologist

• Russell Johnson, middle school engineering and technology

• Emily Ruggeri, middle school eighth grade science and seventh and eighth grade girls basketball coach

• Daren Ward, middle school health and PE teacher and ninth grade girls basketball coach/assistant varsity girls basketball coach

• Ben Brisben, middle school special education

• Tracey Overton, high school special education

• Nancy Nicholson, high school special education

• Stephanie Smith, high school English as a second language

• Todd Cross, district technology coordinator.

Todd Cross, who has 17 years of experience as the technology director for the Fort Smith School District, was chosen for the technology coordinator position in Siloam Springs. He will replace Jamie Henderson, who announced her retirement earlier this year.

Cross was one of eight candidates interviewed by a committee that consisted of five Siloam Springs administrators.

"Todd possess the the combination of work history, experiences and knowledge that best fit our needs in a technology director," the committee's recommendation letter stated.

High School Principal Jason Jones and swim coach Stephanie Goddard were among the seven resignations.

"These are all good people, I hate to loose them," said Superintendent Ken Ramey.

In May, the Springdale School District announced that Jones was hired as the new Springdale High School principal.

Jones came to Siloam Springs Schools from Garden City, Kan., 15 years ago, Ramey said. He has worked as a teacher, coach and principal, he said.

""It has been my honor to serve the Siloam Springs School District and the community of Siloam Springs for the past 15 years," Jones wrote in his resignation letter. "They have been the best 15 years of my life and I will forever be thankful for the relationships that I have made and for the opportunities that have been given me. I will never be able to repay the investment that so many people have made in me. My only hope is that the people who invested in me know that I did my best, did it with integrity and always made decisions in the best interest of kids.

"I don't have the words to describe how my heart hurts to leave Siloam Springs, but the priority for me and my family is to be obedient to God and follow his will. Our new adventure is about continuing to provide influence, being a part of something bigger than ourselves and gaining and new perspective."

In other business, board members approved hiring approximately 115 employees to work over the summer, in positions such as maintenance, the business office, athletics, food service summer programs and transportation.

General News on 06/03/2018

Print Headline: School board hires 13 new staff members

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