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Voters Elect Newcomer, 2 Incumbents to UCS Board

The top three vote-getters in the UCS board elections are Ken Krolczyk, Gene Klida and Michelle Templeton.

The three open spots on the  Utica Community Schools Board went to Ken Krolczyk, Gene Klida and Michelle Templeton.

Newcomer Krolczyk was the top vote-getter with 25.3 percent of the votes.

"It was very rewarding that I was the top vote-getter tonight. It really showed that people who talked about making a change got out to the polls," said Krolczyk late Tuesday evening.

Trailing closely behind is incumbent vice president Klida, and in third place is incumbent secretary Templeton with 21.5 percent of the votes.  

Veteran board member and treasurer , who has served three six-year terms, will not return to the board. He came in fourth place with 15.9 percent of the votes.

"It was kind of surprising that Carl Territo got voted out because everything I heard is that he was a lock to keep his position," said Krolczyk.

Templeton said Territo was a key piece on the board and he'll be missed.

"I consider it a bittersweet victory.  My colleague, Mr. Territo, was not re-elected and this will leave a void on the Board that could take a very long time to close," said Templeton.

Candidate had the fewest votes with 14.6 percent.

Krolczyk and Klida were endoresed by the Utica Education Association, which is the teachers' union.

"I think I got their endorsement because I understand their position and they understand where I come from as a parent in UCS in terms of keeping the programs and school system intact, and keeping UCS schools going in the right direction," said Krolcyzk.

The newly elected members will serve six-year terms. They will be seated with the other four board members on July 1, which is the first day of the school year’s fiscal budget. Krolczyk said he looks forward to working with the board on the budget to "maintain the high quality and standard of the UCS schools."

The board is responsible for the education of public school students, approving programs of study, textbooks and hiring of teachers and administrators. The board also endorses offerings such as adult and youth enrichment classes, early childhood education and high school completion programs. The board oversees the construction and equipping of school buildings and obtains budget funds to operate the schools.

Voter turnout for the election was low. In Shelby, 4,838 voters came to the polls and in Utica, only 281 people casted votes. Residents in Sterling Heights, Macomb, Ray Township and Washington Township casted votes in the UCS School Board Elections. In total, 10,576 voters turned out.

According to Judy Rosenthal, co-chairwoman for Shelby Township Precinct 23 and 24, turnout for the school elections has been extremely low this year.

“This is a school board election and it’s not well publicized,” she said.

The May 3 election costs UCS about from the district's general fund. If the schools held board elections to coincide with general elections in even years in November, the costs would be absorbed by the larger state and federal election. UCS, however, opts to hold the elections in May of odd years.

Krolczyk, 45, said once he's seated, he would like to address the school board election date. 

"One of the things that sticks out the most is the May elections. I really don’t think it’s a necessity. There is no reason. There is no justification for spending that kind of money if we could have it (elections) in November," he said.

Ken Krolczyk May 03, 2011 at 02:05 PM
Vote for Ken Krolczyk. Vote for Change!!!
ShelbyCitizen.com May 03, 2011 at 08:49 PM
Ken, Wondering what your opinion is about Utica having the election at an odd time that cost the district and Townships thousands in extra cost? Do you thin they do this to steer support to the candidates they want voted in because they know the turnout will be lower? I mean, 90,000 dollars could buy a lot of technology and and pay for a couple teacher salaries instead of off time elections.
a worker November 01, 2012 at 12:56 AM
I do know that the support personel were also counting on Ken K. to help them out too. Not only did he lie to a lot of them he also voted to outsource them (which was a big mistake). If/when anything happens between one of the GCA boys an a student... you can also point the "I told you so" finger straight at him too. The entire UCS BOE made the decision to outsource the support personel. We should hold the entire BOE responsible when something happens to a student.

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