Wauwatosa School Board lays out process to fill vacant seat

May 3, 2013

The Wauwatosa School Board met Thursday night to formulate a process by which to replace longtime member Lois Weber, who recently resigned after 37 years of service.

Four members were present for the meeting: Michael Meier, Tom Jarosz, Mary Jo Randall and Sharon Muehlfeld.

With input from Superintendent Phil Ertl, the board approved a complex motion that will allow them to evaluate and vote on candidates for the position at the next regular School Board meeting, May 13. The person appointed would fulfill Weber's current term, which ends in April 2014, and would face an election at that time.

After installing a candidate May 13, the board will take up its annual vote on officers, electing a president, a vice president, a clerk and a treasurer.

Those seeking consideration for the School Board seat are to submit a written, signed Notice of Interest to Ertl, along with an introductory letter, a resume and letters of recommendation. Seven paper copies of each document are required, and the material will be treated as non-confidential public documents.

The Notice of Interest is available on the district website, www.wauwatosa.k12.wi.us.

The application materials must be delivered in person to the superintendent's office, 12121 W. North Ave., between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., next week, May 6 through May 9. Material will be submitted to School Board members May 10. Minutes of Thursday's meeting will be provided to the candidates submitting applications, as a formal notice of the requirements and the questions to be asked of them at the board meeting.

Once applications are received, the board members are advised against contact or communication with the candidates. Questions on the process can be directed to Ertl.

At the May 13 meeting, which begins at 7 p.m., candidates may make an introductory statement, will be asked to answer five questions, and can make a closing statement. The total time allotted each candidate is 15 minutes. Candidates will face the board in alphabetical order by last name.

The questions to be asked in public session are these:

How have your life experiences and skills prepared you for this job?

Define the difference between the board's role in governance and the superintendent's role in managing the day-to-day operations of the district.

Of all the things the board is responsible for in the Wauwatosa School District, what are the three most important things to you, and why?

What is the board's role in achieving the school district's mission?

What should be the relationship of the School Board to the local community?

These questions also will be posted on the web site.

After all the candidates have spoken, and a brief pause for silent deliberation, the board members will vote in signed paper ballots on the candidates. Any candidate achieving four votes is elected. If there are several candidates and none achieve four votes, the top two vote-getters advance to the next ballot.


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