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School board trustee resigns; applications accepted



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January 22, 2014 - Brandon Twp.- The school board has an immediate vacancy.

School Board Trustee Le Anne Schmidt tendered her resignation at the board's Jan. 20 meeting, following the end of a closed session and just before the meeting was adjourned.

Schmidt gave her letter of resignation to newly re-elected Board Secretary Chris Yuchasz. Annual board elections were held at the beginning of the meeting. While Yuchasz retained his position and Diane Salter was re-elected vice-president, Greg Allar and Kevin McClellan swapped elected offices, with Allar the new board president and McClellan the new treasurer. Allar was elected by a 4-3 vote, with Allar, Yuchasz, Salter, and Trustee John Chartier voting yes and McClellan, Schmidt and Trustee Lisa Kavalhuna voting no.

In her resignation letter, Schmidt wrote, in part, "Circumstances have transpired which make it necessary for me to vacate my position on the Brandon School Board as of this date, although my term does not end until Dec. 31, 2014."

She did not offer any further explanation, but apologized for incovenience in timing and "additional burden that remaining board members will bear" in appointing a new board member.

Contacted by phone, Schmidt said, "I want the best for the district and to keep the focus forward, especially with the superintendent search. There are many bright options in the future ahead and I hope everyone's eyes will be open to new opportunities and they will be willing to move forward when that opportunity presents itself. I need to do what is best for myself and my family. This decision is for the best."

The district has begun receiving applications for the superintendent position. Current Superintendent Lorrie McMahon is stepping down at the end of the school year.

McMahon said Schmidt's service on the board is appreciated.

"She has worked hard and considered each decision very carefully," McMahon said. "She has been a valuable asset to the district in helping us work through some very difficult times. We regretfully accept her resignation."

Letters of interest from district residents age 18 and over who would like to complete the school board trustee position are currently being accepted. The obligation will be completed with the term, Dec. 31. Send a resume and cover letter explaining why you want to serve and what will make you a good board member to the district's central office, 1025 S. Ortonville Road, Ortonville, MI 48462. Applications should be received by 4 p.m., Jan. 31. The board will vote on a candidate soon after.

"We would like to have someone in place by Feb. 12, which is when the board will be reviewing superintendent candidate applications," said McMahon. "We would like to have the full school board in place for that very important decision. There is no time to waste."

Details: 248-627-1802.

Susan covers Brandon Township and Ortonville
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