The Merrill area schools Board of Education will continue business as usual, after members voted 5-3 to keep Lin Kautza as Board President.
The controversy was centered around an e-mail from Lin Kautza's account, which was allegedly sent to the superintendent’s secretary with the instruction to send it out to all Merrill Area Public School staff. This was perceived as a violation of rules of conduct by a candidate by conducting political business during school hours and using school resources for political gain.
Last night, Kautza refused to resign over the incident and has refused to answer any more questions.
In other board action, a former Merrill teacher who was fired after his part in a marijuana drug bust could get his job back. Jay Peterson was a teacher at Prairie River Middle School and a coach, when he was charged with possessing the main ingredient in marijuana. Peterson pleaded no-contest in the case and was terminated by the school district.
The school district has now reached an agreement with Peterson after he filed a grievance with the teacher union over his termination. The agreement states; Peterson can get his job back next year as long as he satisfies the conditions of his plea deal, pays back the district $5,000 that he received while on paid leave, and takes part in drug testing.