In addition to the many changes the election will bring to the Board of Education, another member has announced his resignation.
Republican Mark Lange has resigned effective Nov. 9. He said he loved serving but needs to spend more time with his business and family.
"It requires a level of dedication I just don't have at the moment," Lange said.
Lange opened in the spring, a business he said requires a lot of his time during the evening hours.
The summer was a slower time for the Board of Education but as meetings picked up this fall, Lange said he realized he just couldn't devote the time this year. In addition to the twice a month board meetings, he served on two committees. Although somewhat cyclical, the committees require a significant time commitment, he said. One was the finance committee, which requires several hours of time each week during budget season.
Lange also feels his wife Cheli and their three sons, all of whom are in the Canton School system, need more of his time.
"My family has definitely gotten shortchanged," he said. "I don't want to completely shut them out."
Board Chairwoman Beth Kandrysawtz said Lange has been a great asset, first as a member of the 2009-2014 Canton Schools Strategic Plan committee.
"He really helped bring that to life for the Board of Education," she said.
And his passion for the schools and financial expertise have been great assets to the board over the past two years, Kandrysawtz added.
"He has been a great contributor to the board," she said.
Lange's departure will mean even more new faces on the board come late November.
Board members are elected to staggered, four-year terms. This year, four terms were up but Republicans Jonathan Webb and Susan Crowe and Democrat Susan Saidel chose not to seek re-election. The other open seat is currently occupied by Democrat , who was appointed to fill a vacancy. She is seeking election.
In addition Republicans , and and Democrat are seeking election. Of the five on the ballot, four will be seated and electors can vote for three. One of those by default will be a Democrat, fulfilling the 3-member minority requirement on the board.
If one of the Republicans were not elected, they could express interest in Lange's seat. Kandrysawtz said the two-year requirement and lack of an election process could be attractive to some. There was talk of trying to make the resignation effective before the election but the town's completion of the ballot and other factors presented too many logistical and financial hurdles, she said.
The opening of his seat will be noticed on Nov. 9 and anyone interested should send a letter of interest to Kandrysawtz by Friday, Nov. 11 at:
Canton Board of Education
4 Market Street, Suite 100
Canton, CT 06019
The person taking Lange's place must be a Republican or unaffiliated candidate. Those interested will be interviewed at the board's Nov. 15 meeting and someone will be seated Nov. 29.
Kandrysawtz said all the outgoing members will be missed. However, she is encouraged by the involvement and expertise of the current candidates. The board also has a good orientation process, she added.
"I'm confident we'll manage the transition successfully," she said. "I'm sure they'll all be contributors very early in their term."