The Licking Heights Board of Education voted unanimously in a special meeting March 23 on the employment nonrenewal of athletics director Troy Slattman and assistant athletics director Rita Pendexter.

According to Superintendent Thomas Tucker, the elimination is part of a reorganization campaign to save money. The positions of athletics director/dean of students and assistant athletics director would be replaced with one full-time athletics director. Slattman is currently the school's athletics director/dean of students.

"In light of the district's financial circumstances, we looked at those programs that had the least impact on direct instruction," Tucker said. "With the backdrop of fully understanding the positive impact sports and other extracurriculars have on our children, we decided to reorganize the athletic program to make it more (self-sustaining)."

Tucker said he hopes to have a new athletics director named before the end of the school year but probably after the levy in May.

He also said Slattman isn't guaranteed to remain as athletics director.

"Troy and Rita would be more than happy to compete for the position," Tucker said, adding that the administration could hire from within the district or consider outside applicants.

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