(UPDATED, 10:58 a.m., with comments from Joki.)
The latest shakeup in the West Ada School District came as an abrupt surprise.
Trustee Russell Joki resigned during Tuesday night’s school board meeting.
Asked to elaborate Wednesday morning, Joki emailed two brief statements to Idaho Education News: “My family needs me. … There are no other reasons nor more important reasons.”
Joki was elected in May, taking office in July. His nine months on the board of the state’s largest school district was tumultuous — as trustees publicly sparred with former trustee Linda Clark, and at times with each other.
Two other trustees, Tina Dean and Carol Sayles, still face a recall election on May 17.
The past 11 months in West Ada has been marked by turnover. Here’s the brief recap:
- May, 19, 2015: Two newcomers, Joki and Julie Madsen, win seats on the West Ada board. Madsen ousts longtime trustee Anne Ritter.
- Oct. 23, 2015: Clark abruptly resigns as superintendent, contending she was forced out by trustees. Joki disputes her claim.
- Nov. 9, 2015: Trustees vote to terminate Clark’s contract.
- Dec. 15, 2015: Trustees hire former Lakeland school superintendent Mary Ann Ranells to replace Clark.
- Feb. 19: Rather than face a recall election, Madsen resigns from the board.
- Feb. 28: Philip Neuhoff is appointed to succeed Madsen.
- April 5: Joki resigns from School Board.