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Published: Thursday, 7/17/2008

TPS board names two top administrators, starts process for November bond issue


The Toledo Board of Education approved Thursday morning the appointment of two cabinet-level positions and authorized the administration to start the process of putting a bond issue on the November ballot.

Two long-term staff members and familiar faces at the district are retiring Crystal Ellis, chief of staff, and Richard Jackson, assistant superintendent of elementary education.

Mr. Ellis has served the district for nearly 50 years and Mr. Jackson for almost 40.

Filling their shoes will be Lonny J. Rivera as the new chief of staff, effective Aug. 18, and Romules Durant, assistant superintendent of elementary education, effective Aug. 4.

Mr. Rivera, who has served as principal at Coy Elementary School in Oregon City Schools since 2003, has previous experience with TPS as a principal, assistant principal, dean of students, and special education teacher.

Mr. Durant, most recently principal at Riverside Elementary, has been with the district since 1999 as a teacher, assistant principal, and principal.

"Today I am excited to put together a team of individuals who are committed to education and to providing the best opportunities for the students of the Toledo Public Schools," Superintendent John Foley said in a statement. He is on vacation.

"We must continue to develop a leadership team that can continue to work toward improvement and progress."

The school board yesterday also authorized the administration to file the initial documents to pursue exploring a bond issue for the Nov. 4 ballot that could make available $37 million for capital improvements.

The bond issue would essentially alter the bond issue passed in November, 2002, for the district s Building for Success program.

When voters passed that, the project was about $800 million and has since been scaled back to about $640 million.

The difference between the bonds that could be issued in 2002 $183 million and what bonds issued for the current project $146 million is where the $37 million comes from.

Because of the language of the bond passed in 2002, the school district has to go back to the voters before getting the OK to spend that difference.

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