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Four-year school terms preferred

Published 11:11pm Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Dowagiac school board members prefer four-year terms.
Supt. Dr. Mark Daniel explained at City Hall Monday night that by a new state law, school elections will occur in November when two seats will be available.
Board members can keep four-year terms or opt for six-year terms.
“I suggest four-year terms,” Michelle Helmuth said. “Six years is a long time for someone to commit, not knowing what they’re committing to. That would be my recommendation.”
President Larry Seurynck agreed “it would make it harder, not easier, to get people to sign up. Longevity is a real asset on the board, so we’ll keep them longer once we have them and they get their feet on the ground.”
“We’re all in agreement on that from the heads nodding,” said Mark Dobberstein, who made the motion to favor four years over six, which passed 6-0 with the support of Seurynck, Helmuth, Dobberstein, Ronda Sullivan, Claudia Zebell and Stacy Leversen. Julia Smith was absent.
In other Jan. 18 business, Daniel announced that Elaine Pilot will be retiring from the middle school office Jan. 27 after 18 years “as a valued employee. We wish her the best in her future endeavors.”
Daniel said Angie Ernzen, who worked at DMS from August 2006 to June 2010, will be brought back.
Also at DMS, the board extended Carol Primley’s unpaid Family Medical Leave Act absence for two weeks.
The board confirmed a co-curricular appointment of Lamone Moore as eighth grade girls basketball coach.
Daniel applauded Dowagiac’s “exceptional” board members for January, School Board Recognition Month.

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