A replacement to fill the vacant seat on the Lawrence school board won’t be chosen at the board’s March 13 meeting, a district official said Monday.
Instead, district officials are considering delaying the process so the district can formally interview applicants, a step the board previously was not going to undertake.
School board president Marcel Harmon on Monday told the Journal-World that the board is re-evaluating the appointment process to fill Kristie Adair’s vacant seat — specifically the part of that process that doesn’t involve formal interviews of each applicant.
Based on input from the public, “we’ve rethought interviewing candidates,” Harmon wrote in an email. Harmon also said the board was “looking at different options for doing this,” but likely wouldn’t announce a decision about any changes to the process until Tuesday afternoon at the earliest.
The Journal-World last week reported that board members did not plan on formally interviewing candidates as part of efforts to fill the vacant seat. The process, which board members said had been used twice in 2014, calls for board members to review applications independently after today’s submission deadline, select three applicants as their top choices, then discuss the merits of those applicants at a public meeting on March 13, the same meeting in which they would also appoint the new board member.
Board members would have the option of contacting applicants before that date, school board vice president Shannon Kimball told the Journal-World last week, but that any such choice would be "left up to each individual board member."
But Harmon on Monday said this decision wouldn’t be made at the March 13 meeting after all, and might occur at the board’s next regular meeting in April or at a special meeting called between March 13 and then. Harmon also said the board would share these details, once finalized, with the Journal-World, the public and the school board candidates.
“We've just been hearing from the community that they would like to see the candidates publicly interviewed and/or have a chance to publicly state their case for being a school board member,” Harmon said in an email Monday.
The deadline to apply for the position was 5 p.m. today. As of Monday afternoon, the district had received 19 applications, not including two candidates, Victoria Anderson and Enoch Kaulaity, who have withdrawn their applications.
Profiles of applicants to fill vacancy on USD 497 school boardThe Journal-World has published information, as it became available, on applications for the spot vacated by Lawrence school board member Kristie Adair.
March 10 — Lori Hutfles
March 10 — Norine Spears
March 9 — Ruben Flores
March 9 — John Rury
March 8 — Jo Ann Trenary
March 8 — Jesse Brinson
March 7 — Linda J. Sheppard
March 7 — Melissa Johnson
March 6 — Kyung Hwang
March 3 — Syed A. Jamal
March 2 — Mitzi Robinson
March 1 — Steve Wallace
March 1 — William “Bill” Roth
Feb. 28 — James Hollinger
Feb. 25 — Dr. Fatima Khan
Feb. 24 — Margaret Weisbrod Morris
Feb. 23 — Mary Loveland