School board declares vacancy

Pipestone Area Schools (PAS) School Board members declared a vacancy on the board during their Dec. 19 meeting at the request of Lance Oye.

Superintendent Kevin Enerson said Oye had an accident and severely injured his leg. In a letter to Enerson, Oye said he was requesting a temporary leave of absence from the school board due to the anticipated length of his rehabilitation. Enerson said Oye thought his rehabilitation might take three or four months.

According to state statute, a vacancy occurs when a board member dies, resigns, ceases to be a resident of the district or is unable to serve on the board or attend meetings for not less than 90 days due to illness or prolonged absence from the district. In the case of illness or prolonged absence the school board can declare a vacancy and fill the vacancy at any regular or special meeting for the remainder of the unexpired term or until the ill or absent member is again able to resume duties as a member of the board, whichever happens first.

Enerson said Oye asked that outgoing School Board Chair Jeff Baatz be appointed to fill his seat until he can return, but that it is up to the school board to select someone by vote to fill the vacancy. The school board plans to appoint someone to fill the vacancy at its Jan. 9 meeting.

Baatz said he wished Oye a speedy recovery.

In other business:
•The FFA meats evaluation team, including Alyvia Caskey, Alivia Fruechte, Rylee Folkerts and Aurora Winsel, won an overnight trip to compete at the National Western Round Up at Colorado State University for earning second place at the state convention. The students will miss school from Jan. 5 to 7 to attend the event. The school district will pay for transportation and lodging, which is estimated to cost $1,600. FFA will cover the $1,300 registration fee and any other expenses.
•Enerson presented plaques in recognition of their service on the school district to Baatz, who served 16 years on the school board, and Amy Nelson, who severed four years on the school board. Nelson chose not to seek reelection and Baatz was not reelected in November.