NEW ULM - Denny Waloch, who was appointed two weeks ago to serve on the District 88 School Board in place of Sharon Gieseke, took the oath of office Thursday, during the regular school board meeting.
Waloch will serve until January 2015. A candidate will be elected to the position at the general election in November to finish the term, which ends in 2017.
As a result, five seats on the school board will be voted at the November's general election. Three are four-year seats, and two are two-year seats.
The two-year seats are Gieseke's and a seat also vacated early by Jill Hulke. The Hulke seat is held by appointee Christi Dewanz. Hulke was unable to serve because she was elected from an address outside the district.
The four-year seats are now held by Duane Winter, Steve Gag and Don Deslauriers, all elected in 2010.
Board members usually get elected in November and take office the following January.
Filing dates for the school board are July 29-Aug. 12, Superintendent Jeff Bertrang reminded the board and public at the meeting.
Candidates must indicate if they are filing for a two-year position or a four-year position, not both, stressed Bertrang.
Waloch indicated when he was appointed that he intends to run in November.
New Ulm High School Handbook
During its regular meeting, the board approved the 2014-15 New Ulm High School Handbook.
One major change is the addition of a section on flag etiquette.
Another sunstantial change concerns attendance.
It states that students who are absent for more than 15 days per semester (not counting absences because of school activities or field trips) cannot earn more than a passing grade in a course.
Educators are trying to send a message that, regardless of the nature of these absences, students absent that long would miss out on deep discussions and engagement in the classroom and would not get the high quality education intended with a course, said Bertrang.
The change concerns a minute percentage of the students, adminstrators add.
Bertrang reported to the board that he has made several community and civic group presentations about an upcoming referendum Aug. 12 on a $46.9 million bond to build a new high school and remodel three existing schools.
"Most of the questions revolve around individual tax impact with people understanding there is a need," said Bertrang.
"Our job continues to focus on providing answers to questions and providing the factual information about the referendum.
"Property values and tax assessments will change each year, and we can't say that everyone will have the same tax impact each year."