Two newcomers join Kays on Marshall school board

Wednesday, April 3, 2002

The race for three seats on the Marshall Board of Education was close, with four candidates in contention.

Newcomer Larry D. Godsey had the race's strongest showing, garnering 918 votes. Marshall Ward 1 voters gave him the most support, casting 352 votes in his favor. Godsey picked up an additional 249 votes in Ward 2, 164 in Ward 3, and 113 in Ward 4.

Quality of education was one of Godsey's main concerns during the campaign. During an open forum in late March he related how while teaching at Missouri Valley College he had senior students who were hard-pressed to write a quality sentence.

Godsey said that none of the students were Marshall graduates, but seeing them made him want to serve on the school board to ensure the local district would not turn out such graduates.

Godsey also said he feels that the district definitely needs to do something about its facilities.

Jay Barton, who will also be new to the school board, received a total of 865 votes. Ward 1 voters cast 294 ballots in his favor with an additional 249 coming from Ward 2, 161 from Ward 3 and 114 from Ward 4.

During the campaign, Barton had cited the need for new facilities as one of his primary goals if elected. Barton's goals also include bolstering teachers' salaries and benefits.

He said his children now have some of the same teachers he learned from and that these teachers who stay with a district for the long-term have a stabilizing effect on it.

Ed Kays, currently the board's president, took the final seat with 802 votes. Kays received 263 votes in Ward 1, 177 in Ward 2, 166 in Ward 3 and 134 in Ward 4.

For his top three goals if re-elected, Kays had named establishing a plan for the development of new facilities for elementary and middle school students, reducing the size of classes in kindergarten through second grade to approximately 15 to 18 students and making the salaries of Marshall teachers even more competitive.

Narrowly missing the board was David K. Hayes. He finished with 261 votes in Ward 1, 216 in Ward 2, 153 in Ward 3 and 113 in Ward 4. With votes from outlying areas in the school district, his total came to 760 votes.

Incumbent board Vice President Raymond Thompson was fifth with 582 votes.

Rounding out the field of candidates were

* Mary Williams with 539 votes.

* Doug Fangmann with 456 votes.

* Michael Hammer with 346 votes.

* Anthony Gossett with 203 votes.

* David Kemm with 114 votes.

Bob G. Stewart and William Smith both withdrew from the election after the ballots were printed and received 272 and 141 votes, respectively.

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