Board wants to prevent another crowded field
By Elliot Mann
Rochester School Board members plan to make efforts so voters won’t face such a large slate of candidates in the next general election.
Thirteen candidates squared off for three spots on the board last week, mainly because a board oversight eliminated a primary. New legislation required school districts to inform the state by June 1 if they planned to have a primary. Rochester board members say they didn’t discover the change until June 4, three days after the deadline.
On Monday, board members accepted the results of the Nov. 4 school board election, in which incumbents Breanna Bly, James Pittenger and Cris Fischer won re-election. More than 42,700 people voted in the school board election.
Bly referred to the mix-up about the primary and said it was apparently due to a communication error.
The Minnesota School Board Association sent notifications to districts, Bly said Monday, but "those were passed on, and that seems to be where and how that breakdown occurred." She said it would be better if the legislation required districts to notify the state if they planned to skip the primary.
"This really did slip under the radar," she said. "I believe you’ll see us work with our legislators to rectify this."