Simpson voted SKSD board president

Change was not a word thrown out in a campaign speech.

It was a reality at Wednesday night's South Kitsap School District board meeting.

Chris Lemke and Kathryn Simpson both took oaths after winning their respective board positions in the Nov. 3 general election. Lemke, who previously served on the board from 2001-05, defeated incumbent Naomi Polen to regain the District 3 seat. Simpson, a board member since 2005, ran uncontested and earned 97.4 percent of the vote.

The District 3 position was the only one that changed, but it was not the only adjustment in the composition of the board. Simpson unanimously was voted by her colleagues as board president for the next year. She replaces Patty Henderson, who has held the position since the 2006-07 school year.

"We have traditionally had a school-board president for one year and rotated it," Simpson said. "We all were really comfortable with Patty and she has done a fantastic job. But I think we all should step up to the responsibility."

Henderson will remain on the board and also serve as SKSD's Washington State School Director’s Association (WSSDA) representative. She said Simpson expressed interest in becoming president and that after holding the position for multiple terms, she was happy to give someone else the opportunity. Henderson said she would consider taking the position again in the future.

"It's a great opportunity and I look forward to it," Simpson said. "It's a little formal with a little more responsibility. I've got a great board to work with."

Former board vice president Keith Garton will take Simpson's role as SKSD's legislative representative. Jay Rosapepe unanimously was voted as the board's new vice president.

Lemke, who said he felt "energetic" after his first meeting back, will assume Polen's role as SKSD's Washington Interscholastic Activities Association representative.

• SKSD assistant superintendent for business and support Terri Patton said enrollment figures for the school year remain higher than projected. Patton said SKSD had 9,814.9 full-time equivalent students during its November calculations. The decimal point is the result of the state not counting some students, such as kindergarteners, as full time. Before the term began in September, Patton projected 9,665 full-time equivalent students when the school year ends.

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