On July 1, Brian Atkinson will take Joe Thomas' spot while Ted Jackson and Terry Barr return for a second term as at-large school board members on the Clay Community School Board of Trustees.
They will make critical decisions about teacher contract negotiations, student/teacher scheduling, state funding cuts and the increasing utility and transportation costs facing the corporation the next four years.
Atkinson is ready to get to work.
"I'm very happy to be chosen as one of the three," Atkinson said of his win Tuesday evening. "We've got a lot of work ahead of us, and I'm looking forward to the challenges ahead."
Atkinson said he feels the contract negotiations with the Clay Community Classroom Teachers' Association, if not settled soon, will be the first challenge to tackle.
"We need a meeting of the minds when it comes to the sticking points of the teachers' contract, especially on the issue of scheduling," he said. "We've got to get over that hurdle, and it's better sooner than later."
Ted Jackson sees another term on the school board as an opportunity for creating and reaching for positive goals.
"We're stymied right now, but there is an opportunity for positive changes in the future," he said.
Jackson said renovating and upgrading schools and other facilities in the corporation will soon become a reality when the outstanding debts against the school corporation are paid down in a few months. He was excited and appreciative of the community involvement in the committees studying the various needs of facilities.
"I'm very appreciative of the people's faith in electing me for a second term," he said. "It was good to see the voter turn out for this election."
Terry Barr agreed with Jackson.
"I'm excited and honored to be elected for another term. There's something about having people vote for you that's a little overwhelming," she said.
Barr thinks the biggest hurdle facing the school board is morale.
"Everyone is so frustrated right now," she said. "It's hard to get on with other things."
Other things facing the Clay Community School Board of Trustees include the budget crunch due to state funding cuts; the rising costs of health insurance premiums and utilities and the effects of gasoline prices on the transportation budget.