Monroe County Community Schools is expected to approve a new diversity position at its school board meeting this week.
Assistant Superintendent Peggy Chambers plans to recommend Tri-North Middle School Assistant Principal Diane Hanks for the position.
Hanks was passed up for a principal position earlier this year. That raised a firestorm of complaints from the Bloomington African-American community, who thought Hanks should have been hired over another assistant principal who was a white male.
MCCSC School Board President Keith Klein did not say whether the creation of the new position was related to the incident, but he says Monroe County students need a diverse body of educational professionals to look up to.
“One of the things that we haven’t done is we haven’t been really out there recruiting at places that are traditional homes for minority folks,” he says. “For instance, some of the traditional black colleges in this country, we should be there. We should be on site. We should be recruiting there.”
Indiana Department of Education statistics from 2011—the most recent year available–shows more than 96 percent of educators in Monroe County are white, but less than 80 percent of the district’s students are white.
Hanks would not receive a pay raise in new position and would retain her current $76,913.47 salary.