School Board President resigns, new Trustee hired


Courtesy WPS facebook

After making their final decision, the WPS Board of Education put out a graphic to their social media welcoming their new Trustee, Kelly Webber.

With the recent resignation of School Board President Rob Kirby, a new Trustee position was opened and filled by Wyandotte resident Kelly Webber.
“He [Kirby] cited health reasons,” Superintendent Dr. Catherine Cost said. “He said that he needed to take time and focus on his own health, he resigned on January 31st.”
With Kirby being President of the Board, Vice President Cindy Kinney has served as acting President since his departure, meaning she is in charge.
The position was opened for all Wyandotte residents who are over the age of eighteen and are registered to vote. After applications were processed the Board narrowed their search down to three people. They held a vote on February 15 meeting to select the board member.
“Board service is what you make it,” School Board Trustee Michael Swiecki said. “As far as the different issues, you’re more spoken about some because you’re more passionate about them. And then there are others that you don’t say so much about, either way, you still have to make your vote.”
The decision on who would fill the position wasn’t done by just one individual; for every decision the Board works together until they find their answer.
“One thing about Board service [is] when you’re a Board member, you have no authority, no power, nothing on your own. You look at the Board decision as one decision,” Swiecki said. “And even if you don’t agree with it, let’s say you vote no, once the Board accepts it, you have an obligation to support.”
For each applicant, there was a lot the Board had to take into consideration, what will each person bring to the table.
“We had a discussion about each one and we talked about the positives and the things that different people might bring to the position,” School Board Treasurer Theresa Crnkovich said. “You know, some people are parents so we like that and some people, it seems, like they have a lot of community involvement so we also like that.”
After the vacating of Kirby, the Board then had a certain time frame they needed to fill the position. Webber will now complete Kirby’s term and then may re-apply for the position once the term is finished.
“They’ll be a full member. They’ll have all the same kind of responsibilities as me and the other six members right now. The only difference is that they are only in this position until December 31, 2022,” Crnkovich said. “They don’t get to keep the seat; they just are filling [in] the remainder of this year. This seat will actually be on the ballot on November 8. And so if they want to stick with it, they have to run and keep their seat.”
This is the first time in a long time someone has resigned mid-term, so for some Board members, this is a new experience.
“​​This is the beginning of my fourth year on the board, and we’ve not had to do this before. So it’s an interesting opportunity,” Crnkovich said. “I will say I was happy that seven people applied… I’m hoping that that means that people are engaged and want to participate in government. I think that’s really exciting. I’ve had a great experience doing it, and so I hope that that means that more parents or citizens want to get involved.”
Being a part of the Board is more than just showing up to meetings and voting. It is about being involved with the community and the issues at hand.
“You need to inform yourself on the issues, ask your questions, do some research if need be,” Swiecki said. “In addition to that, there are several events that, at least for myself, I think you should attend but aren’t required. You should at least be at graduation, honors night, distinguished grads – there are so many things but you should just be present and available.”