District 211 school board member who missed half her meetings resigns
Palatine-Schaumburg High School District 211 board member Lauanna Recker, who missed half the board's scheduled meetings since her April 2015 election, resigned Wednesday.
The District 211 administration received a resignation letter attached to an email from Recker, spokesman Tom Petersen said. The letter was addressed to board member and Secretary Anna Klimkowicz, which is protocol for a board resignation.
Recker said in the letter she resigned because of "recent and significant family matters," Petersen said.
Recker attended only 19 of the 38 school board meetings during her term, and none since Jan. 19, according to records obtained by the Daily Herald through a Freedom of Information Act request.
There has been no public explanation for Recker's frequent absences. She did not return phone calls seeking comment earlier this week. District 211 board President Mucia Burke also declined to comment about a fellow board member at that time.
The six remaining members of the school board must now appoint a new member to serve out the remainder of Recker's term, which ends in April 2019.
Under Illinois law, such an appointment must be made within 45 days of a resignation, Burke said.
Recker's resignation seems to provide the only recourse the board had to address her virtual disappearance from district business this year.
While a state law dictates how a municipal board seat can be declared vacant through an elected official's frequent absences, no such law exists for school board members, according to a spokeswoman for the Illinois State Board of Education. Rather, each individual district can draft its own policy regarding the declaration of vacancies.
Petersen said that while the district has a policy on how to handle vacancies caused by resignation, death, moving out of district or an illegal conflict of interest, it does not address the declaration of a vacancy due to absences.
Though Recker's attendance record for the past two years was only 50 percent, every other board member's is between 92.1 and 100 percent. Some have even participated by phone when unable to attend a meeting in person, but Recker never took that option.