New school board for combined Ypsilanti-Willow Run district will be chosen Monday
Seven newly appointed leaders will make all of the big decisions for the consolidated Ypsilanti-Willow Run school district. And after Monday, those leaders will have names and faces.
The Washtenaw Intermediate School District’s Board of Education will have the tough task of choosing seven individuals from a pool of 18 to form the new school board of the joint Ypsilanti-Willow Run district, which voters approved in the Nov. 6 election.
The WISD board meeting will begin at 6 p.m. at the Eastern Michigan University Student Center, 900 Oakwood St., in Ypsilanti.
At the meeting, the board will go through the selection process and then the new trustees will be named and possibly sworn in, said WISD communications specialist Emma Jackson.
The WISD Board of Education interviewed the 18 candidates Nov. 12 and 13. About 100 community members, teachers and staff attended the interviews over the course of the two days, said WISD Superintendent Scott Menzel.
The candidates for the new board include past school board members from both Ypsilanti and Willow Run, several parents and residents of both Ypsilanti and Ypsilanti Township.
Trustees David Bates, Ellen Champagne, Andy Fanta and Linda Snedacar-Horne from Ypsilanti Public Schools applied for a spot.
From the former Willow Run school board, the applicants are Don Garret, Jr., Greg Myers, Kristine Thomas and Mark Wilde.
D’Real Graham and Dan Raglin also are candidates for the consolidated board. They ran uncontested Nov. 6 for the open seats on the Ypsilanti Board of Education, but the merger passing voided the two districts' separate school boards.
Maria Sheler-Edwards, Scott Elliot, Celeste Hawkins, Greg Johnson, Robert Oliver, Venus Strong-Smith, Anthony VanDerworp and Althea Wilson are the remaining eight candidates.
- Read this previous article to learn more about each individual.
The appointed board will set the course and make staffing and facility decisions for the new consolidated district, which will become operational effective July 1, as well as manage the existing Ypsilanti and Willow Run school systems until then.
The selected trustees will be sworn in to both the Ypsilanti school board and the Willow Run school board until the new district is official. After July 1, they will have to be re-sworn in to that district.
Choosing a name and a mascot for the new district also will be among the trustees' tasks.
Previous coverage: What's next? Merger puts Ypsilanti-Willow Run school districts in 'uncharted territory'