Voters expected to fill vacant school seat

Board to consider applicants after resignation, but ballot has three candidates for two spots

John Scolman
By 
JOE POIRIER
Ozaukee Press Staff

The Grafton School Board is accepting applicants to fill a vacant seat before the April 6 election, but the vacancy is expected  to be filled by a candidate on the ballot.

On Monday, Feb. 22, member John Scolman resigned after serving since 2019.

“Regrettably, and for personal reasons, I am resigning from my position on the School Board and I will not be returning to work,” he wrote in a statement that was read during Monday’s School Board meeting.

“I have only well wishes and high expectations for the students and the dedicated employees of the Grafton School District. I am truly grateful for having had the opportunity to serve.”

School officials said state statutes and the district’s policy require that the board fill a vacancy within 60 days of a member’s resignation. Although the election will be held on April 6, the Grafton School Board won’t swear in new members until April 26.

“With the election coming up, it’s a unique situation,” Supt. Jeff Nelson said. “We are required within 60 days to have someone fill that spot.”

The board considered having candidates apply to fill the vacancy before the April election who would then be up for re-election. “Depending on the election results, that person may be replaced by someone else or they may be the one who stays on the board,” Nelson said.

The board also considered waiting until April 12 to appoint a new member. Nelson said the board must fill the vacant seat by April 22. “That would allow the election results to be posted and have that person who is elected by the community to be seated a couple of weeks earlier,” he said.

Although the district is accepting applications for an interim board member,   the board unanimously agreed to appoint a member after the April election. The board will hold a special meeting on April 12 to do this.

“I would feel more comfortable with appointing someone after the election because we would be appointing someone who the community would like to be on the board,” School Board member Carrie Walls said.

Two seats on the board are up for election, with three candidates on the ballot. Incumbent Jerry Rossi and newcomers Mary Widmann and Shawn Taylor are vying to fill those seats.

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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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