TORRINGTON – Goshen County School District No. 1 held their regular school board meeting Tuesday night, filling the vacant chair of retired member Charlie Harshberger.
Harshberger filled the seat for 11 years, which now will be filled by Board newcomer Mark Jespersen. He was chosen to fill the seat for the interim, until the election in November.
Coming from Moorcroft, Mark Jespersen has been a Torrington resident for 16 years. Jespersen moved to Torrington with his wife Erin, who had been employed by the school district after she graduated from college.
“My wife got a job with the district right out of college,” he said. “I had one more year left and I happened to find a job with a public accounting firm here in Torrington when I graduated.”
Wanting to get involved and seeing several openings, but never feeling it was the right time, Jespersen never lost interest in serving on the school board. With his wife working for the district as a teacher and his children attending district schools, he felt like it was time to step up and get involved.
“I felt like I had a real vested interest in the success of the district and the schools for our students and staff.,” Jespersen said. “For whatever reason this time I felt it was a good opportunity to get involved and to take a more active role in how things work.”
Jespersen said this will be a learning opportunity, finding out how the district board operates and understanding what the issues are.
“Making sure I understand what is really going on, to get up to speed as quick as I can, this is my number one goal,” he said. “Understanding what the issues are, trying to understand all sides of the issues and to work with the other board member to make the best and informed decisions for the district.”
Jespersen wants to become part of the process; from his own knowledge as an outsider looking in he is not planning to shake things up. Jespersen said, “I want to offer any expertise that I may be able to provide.
“It’s a big deal to me,” he said. “I have a vested interest in the success of the district, this is a big deal to me I don’t take this position lightly.”
In other business:
• Trustees also recognized students and staff throughout the district for their accomplishments in education and sports.
Noting their high regards, the board members recognized Charlie Harshberger for his 11-year service as a member and Bob McCarthy as Wyoming Education Association ESP of the year. Also recognized at the meeting were students who placed at the State Science Fair, and students who placed at State FCCLA and FBLA.
The board further recognized members of district sports teams who placed in All-Conference and All-State Honors, placing in 2A championships.
Recognizing students for their good sportsmanship performance, WHSAA Good Sportsmanship Awards Torrington High School boys’ basketball Jared Lemmon, Jordan Malm and Nathan Stitt; Torrington High School girls’ basketball Logan Murphy, Taylor Walsh, Dani Masterson and Adia Sherbyn; Torrington High School girls’ soccer Richelle Fitzsimmons; Torrington High School boy’s soccer Nathan Stitt.
• The board accepted resignations from Torrington Middle School Art Teacher Rebecca Maidl and Torrington High School English Teacher Neale Travis Rapp.
• The Next regular board meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, May 8, and will include salary and benefit recommendations from the Salary Relations Committee.