RALEIGH — The total compensation for the Wake County Public Schools Office of Equity Affairs has changed in the last six months due to staffing changes within the office.
As previously reported, in May of this year the total compensation for the Office of Equity Affairs (OEA) came in at $869,626 for seven employees. The overall total compensation figure includes base pay plus health ($7,396), dental ($336), and longevity pay where applicable.
Updated staff data received by North State Journal shows the office now employs six individuals whose compensation totals $589,617. The change represents a decrease of just over $280,000.
With the addition of new data for fiscal year 2021-22, the overall budget spending by the department since its inception in 2014 has risen just slightly from $8,669,556 to $8,916,223; an increase of $216,666.
Changes to the OEA’s staff include the departure of Coordinating Teacher Christina Spears after becoming president of the Wake County chapter of the N.C. Association of Educators. In 2021, bas compensation for Spears was $64,518 and $91,565 with benefits included.
Another apparent departure includes Teresa Bunner, who hired under the title of “director” in 2018. Her original compensation was $87,120. By 2021, her base compensation had risen to $94,272 or $132,200 including benefits.
The district’s communications office confirmed to North State Journal that both Spears and Bunner are no longer employees of Wake County Public Schools.
Leadership roles in the OEA that had been vacant since last year have also been filled.
Dr. William Chavis was hired in March of this year to fill the position of assistant superintendent of the OEA at a base rate compensation of $129,000. The most recent compensation data for Chavis is $134,805, which includes the four percent increase for educators passed in the most recent state budget.
Chavis started as a high school math teacher in the Alamance-Burlington School System before being appointed Assistant Principal of Fuquay-Varina High School in Wake County Schools in 2010. He became Principal of Fuquay-Varina Middle School in 2013 and Principal of Enloe Magnet High School in 2016.
Chavis was named WCPSS Principal of the Year for 2018-19 and in 2021 he was appointed Senior Director for Executive Leadership Coaching before being hired to run the OEA.
Per his bio, Chavis holds a Master of School Administration degree from UNC-Greensboro and a Doctor of Education degree in educational administration from N.C. State University.
Chavis replaced Rodney Trice who resigned in May of 2021 Trice was hired not long after by the Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools district as the Chief Equity and Engagement Officer with an annual compensation of around $161,940.
Trice’s resignation followed North State Journal’s two-part series investigating a professional development course facilitated by the OEA. The course, “Intro to Critical Race Theory,” was to be taught by The Equity Collaborative, a Diversity Equity and Inclusion training organization founded and run by sitting North Carolina statehouse Rep. Graig Meyer (D-Durham).
As of Oct. 31, Dr. Janeen Perry-Campbell began work as the OEA’s director of affairs for student and educator engagement. She was hired with a base salary of $90,000.
Prior to her hire by Wake County schools, Perry-Campbell had been serving as the Portsmouth Public School’s Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion since July 1, 2021.
The Portsmouth Public School System is located in Portsmouth, Virginia.
“Dr. Perry-Campbell holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Old Dominion University, a MBA from Capella University, a Master of Education in Special Education from Virginia State University, and a Ph.D.in Curriculum and Instruction with emphasis in Urban Educational Leadership from Old Dominion University,” per her bio on the Portsmouth schools website.
Perry-Campbell has taught for 15 years spanning high school and at the post-secondary at her alma mater, Old Dominion University. Her bio also states her research areas are “critical race theory, culturally responsive and sustaining classroom management as well as pedagogy, and disproportionate disciplinary outcomes for Black girls.”
According to the job description for Perry-Campbell’s role, she will be responsible for planning, developing, and delivering equity professional learning experiences for district employees, coaching equity teams in schools with the highest suspension rates, and providing oversight to the district’s student mentoring programs.
She will also serve as liaison to school-based student equity teams, and actively engage the community “as full partners to interrupt opportunity gaps and the predictability of student achievement outcomes based on social and cultural factors.”
Among the “Essential duties and responsibilities” in Perry-Campbell’s job description also includes developing “professional development on cultural competence, culturally relevant instruction, restorative practices, and student engagement,” supervising “district diversity and equity workshops,” as well as “coaching support to school and district administrators to assist in problem-solving equity challenges related to student behavior and discipline.”