Less than a year after being hired, Shawnee Mission School District Director of Communications Erin Little has submitted a letter of resignation.
The resignation, which appeared on the human resources agenda for tonight’s board of education earlier today, will be effective Jan. 16, 2018, though Little told district employees in an email that today was her final day with Shawnee Mission.
This afternoon, Little posted a message on Twitter announcing she had “accepted a new position outside of SMSD – and can’t wait to share.”
#Gratitude – I am so thankful to have served the students, staff & @theSMSD community. Thank you for your kindness. It’s been a privilege to support so many wonderful principals/teachers. I have accepted a new position outside of SMSD – and can’t wait to share #SeeYouSoon pic.twitter.com/FNjbApT69S
— Erin Little (@ErinLittleKC) December 18, 2017
Little started as one of two new directors of communications in February of this year as the district looked to improve its communications operations after patron input indicated that Shawnee Mission needed to modernize its approach. Both Little and former Trozzolo Communications staffer Shawna Samuel were hired at a salary of $110,000.
But Little, a television meteorologist by training who had no experience working in media relations, attracted scrutiny shortly after starting her job at Shawnee Mission. In late February, she issued a statement about a group of Lawrence High School students’ protest of the use of the Indian as the SM North mascot which triggered a chain of events that ultimately led the Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma to rescind the permission it had granted the district in 1992. Superintendent Jim Hinson, who hired Little, announced his resignation from the district just two months after Little and Samuel started in their roles.
Prior to starting her job with the school district, Little had served as a member of KMBC’s weather team since 2008.