JACKSONVILLE — The city’s school board hired two educators and approved the retirement of another one on Tuesday.

During its regular Tuesday meeting, the Jacksonville Board of Education hired Shane Roland as head varsity golf coach and Laurel Taylor as special education instructional assistant for the system. The board also approved the retirement of Texann Dixon, special education director for the system.

Superintendent Mark Petersen said Jacksonville High needed a golf coach because practice for the spring season is to start soon.

“There had been some talk among the golfers that we were not having a golf team this year,” Petersen said. “If I couldn’t find a coach, I was going to do it myself.”

Petersen said Taylor’s job was a new position for the high school’s special education program.

“We have one student there with health issues and I needed to make sure we could carry the load,” Petersen said of the new position.

Petersen said he wouldn’t have let Dixon retire if that was an option. Dixon’s position, which she’s held for three years, encompasses several different jobs besides overseeing special education, such as dealing with federal programs, Petersen said.

“It is a very taxing job … she’s done great at it,” Petersen said. “I don’t want her to retire.”

Petersen assured the board that he and his staff would meet soon to come with options on how to replace Dixon.

Also during the meeting, board voted to declare surplus five old stoves used in the high school’s family and consumer science program, making four available to sell and one eligible for the scrap yard. Petersen said the stoves had recently been replaced with new ones.

The board also approved the system’s calendar for the 2018-19 school year. Petersen said the calendar had been reviewed and approved by staff. The calendar includes 175 total instructional days and 187 total teacher work days.


Staff writer Patrick McCreless: 256-235-3561. On Twitter @PMcCreless_Star.