Health

St. Joseph school board incumbents move out along with the bond issue

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Lute Atieh, vice president of the school board, and Mike Moore, community member, watch the polls. / Photo: Whitnee Ice

From WHITNEE ICE

St. Joseph Post

Voters in St. Joseph turned down a $ 107 million school loan that would have turned American Family Insurance regional headquarters into a second high school and remodeled Central High School.

School Board President Tammi Pasley said in a statement on behalf of the School Board that something has to change.

“The voters spoke and we, the board of directors, respect that,” Pasley told St. Joseph Post. “It is clear that the status quo is not sustainable. While we are disappointed that this bond initiative was unsuccessful, it is the beginning of a discussion with the community that our facilities do not meet the educational standards of the 21st century. “

All three incumbents on the St. Joseph School Board: Lute Atieh, Larry Koch and Rick Gehring have lost their seats to Kenneth Reeder, David Foster and LaTonya Williams according to unofficial results.

The incumbent Rick Gehring said he was disappointed with the election result.

“It was a great learning experience, I have no regrets,” says Gehring. “As I said, I’m disappointed with the result tonight. I’m worried about the future of our district, but I’m not going anywhere while I have children in the district. I’ll have a voice and I’ll try to do what I can. “

According to Lute Atieh, vice president of the school board, the school board still has some great members.

“The change in the board of directors really doesn’t change the situation in which we find ourselves,” says Atieh. “We have to adapt. We have to change. “

Superintendent Doug Van Zyl says the election result was a disappointment.

“I think in every election you have to look at what the voters have said in every election, and I think the voters had the opportunity to say what they wanted to say and that is of course disappointing,” says Van Zyl. “I am very proud of the work our administrative team and board of directors have done to put together a plan, but it obviously gives you choices. People have the opportunity to express their opinion through their voices. “

Under the loan proposal, Benton High School and Lafayette High School would have been converted into middle schools, and the district would have ended the three high schools model in exchange for a new two high school model.

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Robert Dunfee