Tahoe Truckee school district board president resigns (with updates)
November 11, 2010
UPDATE: 4:30 p.m.
TRUCKEE, Calif. and#8212; School board President Kristy Olk announced her resignation this week, a move that ensures when the new board meets Dec. 8 it will be absent of members who voted last year in favor of the controversial reconfiguration of the districtand#8217;s lakeside schools.
Olk made the announcement at the Tahoe Truckee Unified School Districtand#8217;s board meeting Tuesday night. In a Thursday press release provided by Switchback Public Relations, Olk said she has enjoyed serving the community and is pleased to have been part of the continued growth of the school district.
and#8220;I am extremely proud of the direction we are heading with the formation of Professional Learning Communities and collaboration,and#8221; Olk said. and#8220;This will allow us to become better at meeting the needs of each individual student.and#8221;
In a Wednesday interview, Superintendent Steve Jennings commended Olk, who was elected in 2004 as trustee and board president in 2006, for dedicated service and objective demeanor.
and#8220;Kristy actually in the last few months has taken on a new job,and#8221; he said. and#8220;She just feels like she canand#8217;t manage the pressure of the new job and family and the heavy demands of district duties. She was a great member of the board.and#8221;
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Olk confirmed Jenningsand#8217; observation in a Thursday e-mail to the Sun.
and#8220;(My new job) really limits my availability for board duties hence the need to resign,and#8221; she said.
Jennings said Olkand#8217;s resignation will be effective as of Dec. 8, and district officials are already advertising the appointed position. Furthermore, Jennings said a new board president will be elected at the Dec. 8 board meeting.
Applicants should submit letters of intent to the district by Friday, Nov. 19, with a final trustee expected to be appointed and sworn in by Dec. 8, when newly elected Area 1 Trustee Kim Szczurek, Area 5 Trustee Dianna Driller and recently appointed Area 4 Trustee Gaylan Larson take their seats.
Area 2 Trustee Kirsten Livak will be the only remaining trustee from the current board. Earlier this year, trustees Bill Kraus and Lisa Mohun resigned after moving out of their respective areas, with Kraus moving to Washington and Mohun relocating within the region to Glenshire. Current Area 5 trustee Bev Ducey opted not to run for re-election this year, as did current Area 1 trustee Pat Gibbons-Johnson, who was appointed in Krausand#8217; place in April 2010.
According to her biography at ttusd.org, Olk began volunteer work for the school district in 2000, and she was the chairperson for the Measure J bond to rebuild North Tahoe middle and high schools. She also went on to serve on the citizenand#8217;s oversight committees for both Measure J and R and Measure A. She was also a volunteer on both of the last two Measure A campaigns and played a major role in their successful passage.
Her resignation marks the exit of the last board member who voted in April 2009 for the reconfiguration that moved students in grades 4-5 to North Tahoe Middle School, and changed both Tahoe Lake Elementary and Kings Beach Elementary into K-3 campuses, with Tahoe Lake serving as an English mainstream only school and Kings Beach serving as a Spanish Two-Way Immersion school.
Ducey, Kraus and Olk voted in support of the reconfiguration, with Livak and Mohun voting against.
The reconfiguration immediately drew criticism, and some residents launched a recall effort against Ducey, Kraus and Olk in mid-May and started gathering petition signatures to oust the three. The effort failed when the group came up short of gathering 3,400 signatures per trustee and#8212; the required amount of 20 percent of TTUSD voters necessary to recall a board member and#8212; by an early October 2009 deadline.