Former board member begins write-in candidacy
Race for position 5 now contested
Before Monday, one would have been hard-pressed to say there was a race for Basehor-Linwood School Board position 5. After all, it takes at least two to make a race and before early this week, that wasn't the case concerning the number of candidates seeking position 5.
Today, however, is a different story. A familiar face -- a former school board member, in fact -- announced this week that there would be two candidates on the starting blocks.
Less than two weeks away from the April 5 general election, Don Kleoppel, who represented position 2 on the school board for four years, announced this week that he will vie for another term on the school board via a write-in candidacy.
Kleoppel will attempt to unseat incumbent position 5 representative Patrick Jeannin.
In a letter to The Sentinel, Kleoppel said circumstances, many of which stem from School Board positions he opposes, throughout the past several months fueled his attempt to re-enter the political arena.
"I don't feel that the current board is keeping a good pulse on the community that they represent," Kleoppel wrote. "I know people have questioned the board about some of the decisions made and the board has chosen to be silent and not respond. I understand that some things cannot be shared with the public, but to be ignored completely is unacceptable."
Kleoppel's criticism of the current school board and district administration continued.
"I fear that this board has become stagnant and needs new perspectives and fresh ideas," he wrote. "I don't understand how with seven members representing the entire district, almost every vote that is taken by this board is unanimous. I know that cohesiveness is a good thing, but we live in too diverse of a community to have some of these decisions unquestioned."
The school board refrained from commenting on Kleoppel's remarks.
Leavenworth County Clerk Linda Scheer said voters casting their ballots for Kleoppel must write his name clearly and legibly on a blank line and darken an oval next to it, for it to count.
The school board is composed of seven seats, one of which is an at-large position.
They are divided among three district zones. Positions 2 and 5 include all territory south of Parallel Road and extending to the Sherman Township boundary line.