Ensure Outgoing D15 Board Does Not Rush Board Vacancy Appointment
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Over the last 10 years, District 15 has unfortunately become known for its controversial decisions. The most recent example is an exorbitantly priced referendum ($130 million) that was put on the ballot in the November 8th, 2016 election. This referendum had no thorough studies or financials to justify the cost, and its loose and disorganized goals were set forth by the current D15 board members – the same individuals who will be leaving office in less than two weeks due to voters choosing to replace them.
A surprise vacancy came about late on Thursday, April 13, 2017, left by another school board member's resignation. This term has two years left in it, and this circumstance has produced an opportunity; an opportunity that the current D15 school board members plan to use to appoint an individual in a severely rushed time frame. Their goal is to appoint someone by April 24th, just two days before they leave office!
Rushing what should be a thoughtful and measured vetting process is both ill-planned (much like the failed referendum) as well as an affront to the hardworking taxpayers and stakeholders of District 15 who deserve a new school board member who is carefully considered. I believe this consideration should be made by individuals who were recently, and by a substantial number of D15 voters, approved to lead our school district. This is an appointment that should NOT be made by an existing school board that represents the following: three ousted incumbents who lost by considerable margins in the most recent election (Jim Ekeberg, Peggy Babcock and Gerald Chapman), in addition to two members who have not sought re-election, leaving only board member Zubair Khan who will remain on the school board.
The current and outgoing school board members announced this opening at 4:02 p.m. through a Constant Contact communication on Thursday, April 13, 2017, (the Thursday before Good Friday and a pending holiday weekend). This information was published in the Friday, April 14, 2017 Daily Herald, which states that applications will be accepted ONLY UNTIL WEDNESDAY, APRIL 19, 2017.
WHY the rush? WHY are we rushing such an important decision? The allowed period to appoint an individual for this opening is 45 days. WHY are we not taking 45 days, and allowing more time for interested and qualified individuals to apply for this open position? The current/outgoing school board members are giving members of our community only 6 days, over a holiday weekend, to apply and be considered. Conversely, there was no rush when a vacancy was presented to the members of this outgoing board in 2015.
Once again, the members of the current School Board are not interested in making sure that the entire community is engaged, and that ample opportunity is given to all individuals to apply for this open position. From the time the vacancy was announced, to the time applications are due - is only a 6-day period. Over a holiday weekend.
If you believe 45 full days should be given to allow enough notice to attract a qualified candidate to represent you on the District 15 school board, and that the process should include more than ample time to interview, evaluate and truly vet the most qualified candidate, please sign this petition.
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