7 Mayoral Aides Get Jobs With Mayor-Controlled Schools

CLEVELAND (AP) - Seven members of the administration of lame-duck Cleveland Mayor Michael R. White (pictured, right) have been hired by the mayor-controlled city school system.

They include Nicholas Jackson, the mayor's former executive assistant, who will become a $102,000-a-year adviser to the superintendent, and Nina Turner, most recently a liaison to City Council, who was appointed $87,000-a-year director of government affairs.

District spokesman Alan Seifullah said the openings were posted publicly and hiring veteran city employees was an "opportunity to fill both critical existing vacancies and important new positions with highly qualified individuals."

The others leaving City Hall for the school board are parks director Alfred Miller, health director David Harrison, equal opportunity director Lucille Ambroz, deputy project director Annette Scott and receptionist and public affairs officer Carolyn Taskey.

Jim Lardie, executive director of the nonprofit advocacy group For the Children, said the hirings raised questions about the independence of the schools.

The 77,000-student district, Ohio's largest, was placed under the mayor's control in 1998 following years of state control imposed by a federal judge upset by mismanagement and poor student performance.

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