It’s been an eventful, if not always pleasant, year-and-a-half for the folks in charge of captaining the Brookfield-Lyons Elementary School District 103 ship.
Where to begin?
The early part of 2005 was marked by a contentious election campaign in which candidates, challenged by board member Stephen Mazur, were tossed off the ballot.
A later write-in campaign that restored one of those tossed off the ballot to a seat on the board was also fraught with controversy. After a court challenge, Humberto Andrade?”who supported Superintendent Raymond Lauk?”was confirmed as the winner over Mazur-backed Robert Jonak.
Mazur, a vocal critic of Lauk, had the final say, however. In July, board Vice President Felicia Chandler resigned and was replaced by Deanna Huxhold, who eventually sided with Mazur in a vote not to renew Lauk’s contract.
Later in the fall, with Lauk’s fate sealed, Andrade announced he was moving out of the district and resigned.
But Lauk wasn’t going to go without making things more difficult for the board, which was searching for his replacement. In February he suddenly announced he was leaving?”immediately?”for a new job.
The board responded by hiring at first one and then two interim superintendents to replace Lauk before naming Michael Warner the district’s full-time superintendent beginning in July.
After all of the turmoil of the past 16 months or so, that hire is a welcome deep breath for the District 103 central administration, which has continued on despite the uncertainty surrounding them.
At the same time, we also hope that members of the Board of Education will take a deep breath, examine the at-times chaotic string of events they brought upon themselves, and resolve to get back full time to the business of educating the children of the district.
Politics in municipal government comes with the territory. It really has little place in governing the schools serving the communities. With egos in check and a new man in charge, let’s hope District 103 can leverage the promise of excellence resulting from its 2004 referendum victory.
Best wishes for recovery
Since 2001, Brookfield Village President Michael Garvey has been involved as co-chairman of the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life in Jaycee/Ehlert Park, a remembrance of cancer victims and also a celebration of cancer survivors.
When that event kicks off with the lighting of the luminaria at dusk on June 9, Garvey will again be on hand?”this time as something more than a volunteer. He’ll be a cancer survivor.
Of course, there is still uncharted territory for Garvey to traverse, beginning with surgery and radiation therapy in the coming week.
We’re sure we join all Brookfield residents in wishing him a speedy and full recovery.