WHITING | With the continuity of its current membership assured after Tuesday’s election, Whiting School Board members who won re-election are looking forward to taking on new issues impacting one of the state’s small school districts.
A trio of incumbents realized large vote margins in the School Board election over three challengers to win new terms in office. Anthony Borgo won his fourth term, Shawn Turpin his third and Michael Toth his second over challengers Bryan Ciers, Michelle Espinosa and Nina Pierce.
The winners join incumbents Lindy Fisher and Kathleen Murzyn, whose terms were not up for election this year.
Having faced the possible consolidation of the School City of Whiting over declining enrollment during their past term, Turpin, Borgo and Toth say the schools are now on more solid footing in having increased enrollment by opening the middle and high schools to students from outside district boundaries.
Nathan Hale Elementary already had a sufficient number of students.
“I think the vote totals say a lot about the job we’re doing and I believe people like the direction the schools are going,” Turpin said. “We’ll see how this year goes and where we can improve upon what’s already in place.
"We’ve got a longer school day now, and we’ll study if we need to tweak that any.”
Borgo added that the longer school day is giving teachers more time to help students who need additional instruction. And by opening up the district boundaries, the schools can market to, and attract, the best students outside Whiting.
Commenting on why he sought a fourth team, Borgo said, “As long as I feel confident in what we’re doing, I’ll continue to run. I’m excited to be able to serve our school district for another four years.”
Toth, the current board president, said the vote totals reflect that Whiting residents believe the board members have the best interests of the students at heart and that the members work well together.
“I’m excited about having an opportunity for another four years,” he said. “I want to make the school district better and give teachers the tools to get the job done.”