Write-in votes cast for 35 people
By Angie Landsverk
A month after the spring election, a seat on the Weyauwega-Fremont School Board is still vacant.
Dan Kohl did not seek re-election in the April 4 election, and no one filed nomination papers to be a candidate for the town of Fremont seat.
That meant voters had to write in a name for the position.
Kohl ended up receiving the most write-in votes for the position, but turned it down.
He received six write-in votes.
Thirty-four other people also received write-in votes.
Since Kohl declined the position, the school board has to post the vacant seat.
That process was discussed during the board’s April 24 meeting.
District Administrator Scott Bleck said the board is now seeking candidates for the town of Fremont seat.
While terms on the school board are for three years, the term for the town of Fremont seat will be until next April’s election.
Town of Fremont residents interested in being considered for the seat are asked to submit a letter of interest and brief resume to the district’s central office.
The deadline to do so is noon Wednesday, May 17.
The school board plans to interview and possibly select someone for the seat during a special board meeting, which will be held at 5:30 p.m. Monday, May 22, in the middle school library.
If the board is unable to select a candidate from the town of Fremont, the seat will then become available to any qualified elector who lives in the school district.
Kohl had served on the board since December 2006.
The school board met in closed session on April 24 and after returning to open session, recognized the layoff of Amber Curtis for the 2017-18 school year.
Curtis has taught art one day a week at Fremont Elementary for 14 years.
The board voted in March to eliminate the 20 percent, part-time art education position.
A preliminary layoff notice was issued to Curtis before the board issued the final notice.
Bleck said the layoff is due to a decrease in enrollment and a change in the delivery of the program.
“It’s never an easy decision,” he said. “Students drive our program needs.”
Bleck said there has been the district has seen a gradual trend of a decrease in enrollment.
There will not be a reduction in art education at Fremont Elementary, he said.
Over the past year, Doug Nowak, the district’s elementary principal, and Jeremy Schroeder, its middle and high school principal, developed a master schedule to meet the needs of art education, Bleck said.
“Knowing the class sizes at the elementary and middle school levels, they were able to develop a master schedule to meet the art education needs with two full-time staff,” he said.
Lindsey Smith teaches elementary art at Weyauwega Elementary and also sixth-grade art in the middle school.
She will teach art at Fremont Elementary next school year.
The plan is for her to teach art there two mornings a week and to also teach seventh- and eighth-grade art.
Riley Johnson, the district’s high school art teacher, is teaching the seventh and eighth graders this school year.
Schroeder said all the high school art offerings are scheduled to run as planned in the 2017-18 school year.