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Rooney accepts post at Rocklin Unified

By: Loryll Nicolaisen, Journal staff writer
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Linda Rooney’s going to save some serious gas money. The now former Pleasant Ridge Union School District superintendent with a 30-year history with the Lake-of-the-Pines-area K-8 district is settling in as the Rocklin Unified School District’s deputy superintendent of educational services. Rooney, who reported to work with Rocklin Unified July 1, is now working quite a bit closer to home. “I have lived in the Rocklin/Loomis community for 30 years but have had my entire educational career in Pleasant Ridge,” she said Wednesday. In her three decades with Pleasant Ridge, Rooney has worked as a teacher, vice principal and principal. She acted as district superintendent the past three years after spending 16 years as assistant superintendent. “For a lot of reasons, the timing just came together,” Rooney said of her new job. “The door was suddenly opening and when opportunity knocks, you answer it.” The change in scenery isn’t the only change for Rooney. She’s going from a four-school, K-8 district of 1,800 students to a K-12 district serving roughly 10,000 pupils. “There are a lot of things for me to learn and I now have the opportunity to see students grow K through 12,” she said. Rocklin Unified Superin-tendent Kevin Brown said Rooney is a welcome addition to the district. “Obviously we’re very pleased,” he said. “She is a great person with great experience. She’s a great addition and an ideal fit.” Brown said Rooney was hired with an annual salary of $118,368. James Meshwert, retired Pleasant Ridge superintendent, has stepped in as interim superintendent while the district searches for a new superintendent. Longtime Pleasant Ridge Trustee Joann Rossovich said the board approved at a recent meeting a contract with the California School Boards Association to conduct an executive search for Rooney’s replacement. Rossovich said the board and district have been told the search will take a couple months from start to finish. In the meantime, Rossovich said she’s known Rooney as long as she’s been with the district. “I told her I was going to vote ‘no’ on letting her go, but that I understand,” Rossovich said. “I wish her the best.” The Journal’s Loryll Nicolaisen can be reached at lorylln@goldcountrymedia.com.