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Wilkinson to be new principal at Rome Middle School

UPDATE: Anna K. Davie Elementary School Principal Parke Wilkinson will take the lead at Rome Middle School next year, while Brittney Wilson will be the first assistant superintendent for Rome City Schools since the 2010-2011 school year.

Rome City Schools Board of Education members unanimously approved the personnel changes during Tuesday’s meeting.

Wilkinson started at Anna K. Davie Elementary when the school opened in the 2015-2016 school year, and he said he will be transitioning out of the elementary level for the first time in his career. He previously was principal at Main Elementary before taking over as principal at East Central in 2011.

“I love Anna K. I love it,” Wilkinson said, adding that he started something special there and believes the school will have continued success. “I will miss those boys and girls. ... I love them.”

But it’s the challenge of a new school with older students that drew Wilkinson to the position, he said. He will start in his new role July 1, as he replaces Greg Christian, who has been at Rome Middle for 10 years and is retiring on June 30.

Superintendent Lou Byars said the job opening to find Wilkinson’s replacement hasn’t been posted yet, but the system hopes to start taking applications soon.

“We hope to get that filled very shortly,” he said.

Wilson comes from Calhoun City Schools, where she has been the chief academic officer since 2013, according to a news release from Rome City. The release also states Wilson has been the chief executive officer for the Calhoun College and Career Academy since 2015.

Adding Wilson was made possible with the recent cutting of two positions at the central office — chief of technology and chief of federal programs and human resources — Byars said.

As Rome City plans to establish a college and career academy — it’s expected to be included in a new ELOST package — Byars believes Wilson will be an asset in achieving that goal, the release states.

When Wilson will start has not been determined.

Also included in the personnel changes, Melissa Holland, the wife of Eric Holland, who was hired as Rome High principal during April’s board meeting, will join the high school staff as a counselor. She, along with all other high school counselors, will report to the central office “to avoid any conflict,” Byars said.

The Rome High girls’ basketball team will also have a new coach in Jason Harris, who will be a health and PE teacher and athletic director for compliance at the high school.

In other business, Byars led the board through the first reading of the Fiscal Year 2018 budget. He said no increase to the millage rate, which is currently at 17.45 mills, is expected.

Under the budget, state revenues show an increase of $2,931,118 from last year. Part of that is credited to a rate increase in system contributions to the Teachers Retirement System of Georgia, up to 16.81 percent from 14.27, that will add over $800,000 in expenditures, which will come out of the $2.9 million from the state, Byars said.

Certified and classified employees will also get a 2 percent salary bump, which is included in the state budget.

The system will also add 17 positions, including 11 teachers.

There will be two public hearings on the budget: One will be at the Rome City Commission Finance Committee meeting on May 17 at 10 a.m. and the next at the commission meeting on May 22 at 6:30 p.m.

It will then go before the board for adoption during the June 13 meeting.

PREVIOUSLY REPORTED: Parke Wilkinson, principal at Anna K. Davie, will become the new principal at Rome Middle School for the 2017-2018 school year, the Rome Board of Education announced Tuesday. The new position becomes effective July 1.

Before he was at Anna K. Davie, he was principal at East Central Elementary School. He took over as principal at Anna K. Davie during the 2015-2016 school year.

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