- Special Sections
COLUMBIA CITY â€” Whitley County Consolidated Schools board members had the opportunity to meet the candidates aspiring to fill a vacant seat at their meeting Monday.
The board position opened up after former member, Chris Bechtold, resigned due to his new position as a teacher within the district. The newly-appointed board member will be voted in at the next WCCS board meeting, and will finish out Bechtoldâ€™s term â€” through Dec. 31, 2014.
Dan Curless and Leslee Derbeck had open interviews with the school board, Superintendent Pat Oâ€™Connor and Business Manager Tony Zickgraf at Mondayâ€™s regular session.
The candidates, who differ in both age and experience, voiced the same opinion toward the position â€” whoever fills the spot needs to put students first â€” a statement that impressed the board.
â€śWe really care about the kids,â€ť WCCS Board President Don Armstrong said. â€śThatâ€™s what you both said in your interviews, and Iâ€™m impressed with that. Weâ€™re fortunate to have two good candidates for this position.â€ť
Both Curless and Derbeck are Columbia City High School graduates. Derbeck graduated in 1996. Curless, along with graduating from WCCS schools, spent 39.5 years working for the district as both a teacher and administrator.
In fact, Derbeck was one of Curlessâ€™ students.
To read the rest of this story, see the Aug. 7 issue of The Post and Mail. Don't have a subscription? Call (260) 244-5153 or subscribe to our e-edition. For breaking news, sports updates and additional coverage, bookmark the homepage and find us on facebook and twitter.