School board appoints one

The Fort Dodge Community School District board Monday appointed Steve Springer to its vacant seat.

Springer replaces Deb Peterson, who resigned in September. Peterson is moving from Fort Dodge, and the district requires its board members to live in the city.

Nine others applied for the position: Angie Tracy, Ted Vaughn, Nik Moser, Kit Hovey and Lori Osterberg, as well as former election candidates John F. Williams, Randal Funchess, Troy Schroeder and Bill Offerman.

According to Doug Van Zyl, FDCSD superintendent, the candidates were interviewed last week. The board members then held a discussion about whom they would appoint to the vacant seat.

Stuart Cochrane, board president, spoke about the decision-making process.

“We had unbelievably qualified candidates,” Cochrane said. “We deliberated a long time as a board before we reached a consensus. Frankly, the people who interviewed with us were excellent. You could probably have made a fine board just from those representatives. They were outstanding.”

He added, “It was a difficult conversation.”

Board Vice President Bill Forsythe motioned to appoint Springer, seconded by board member Matt Wagner. Springer was approved unanimously.

Springer was not present. At the board’s next meeting, Springer will be officially sworn in.

“He will be contacted,” Van Zyl said. “He’s been out of town for the last couple of days. He had a prearranged appointment out of town.”


The FDCSD board also held its first student and staff recognition Monday. Every month, the board will recognize a student from each building level (elementary, middle school and senior high) and one staff member.

“We’re looking for those students who have gone above and beyond, and give them that pat on the back,” Van Zyl said earlier this month. “Any staff member in the district, if they see a student doing something that’s exemplary, they can have an opportunity to nominate those students for that recognition.”

Jordan Lennon, a Butler Elementary student, was nominated by teacher Kathy Walters. Aaliyah Warland, a Fort Dodge Middle School student, was nominated by teacher Patty Loots. And Stephanie Dunbar of Fort Dodge Senior High was nominated by teacher Ryan Takatsuka.

Kathy Arends, Duncombe Elementary teacher, was recognized as Employee of the Month for October.

Each was given a framed certificate by the school district, and their pictures will hang in the central administration office, 104 S. 17th St.

Last, Stuart Cochrane was appointed the 2013 Iowa Association of School Boards delegate assembly representative.

The board approved Cochrane’s nomination unanimously.