McHenry County Regional Superintendent of Schools Leslie Schermerhorn made the following comment to the McHenry County Board last week:
The ROE urgently needs an additional truancy officer.
We are living in extraordinary times resulting in a crisis for McHenry County students and schools.
Since August, truancy referrals from the McHenry County schools have risen 300% over last year.
There are 47,000 students in this county spread over 611 square miles.
That is an unmanageable number of students and distance for 1 & ½ Truancy Officers to serve.
Many of our children, McHenry County’s next generation of adults:
Will not have the tools they need to find gainful employment
The knowledge to go on to college and University.
The ability to be productive, analytical citizens of McHenry County
County monies are tight but, We have to ask ourselves, what are our priorities as members of this community?
= = = = =
She explains her budgetary experience below:
To put this in context, the ROE request for a new position was submitted in the ROE budget proposal for FY21.
Peter moved the truancy officer request below the request threshold.
He has done this with every personnel request the ROE has made for the 8 years I have been in office.
Peter makes the funding recommendations to the County Board.
It has been my experience that the Board accepts Pete’s recommendations carte blanche.
At one point, I questioned him on who made the decisions on where to draw the line on these requests.
He said Administration.
I pressed him as to who exactly.
He said, he drew the line.
He then back peddled and said well, me and Ralph.
This leaves me to wonder:
Who really decides where to cut off personnel requests?
In case you don’t recall this, my accounting position was eliminated two years ago due to poor state findings.
The county was to take over the ROE accounting.
The ROE accounting situation has been a continual state of turnover.
First Ralph Sarbaugh came in with a temp.
He retired, then the ROE went through a series of 5 temps.
I believe this has cost the county far more than a regular county position would have.
The state finding for 2019 will be no better.
The auditor stating the inconsistent account procedures are a major reason.
This is my frustration.