Journal Register News service

PHOENIXVILLE -- Four new board members will be sworn in during the Phoenixville Area School Board's reorganization meeting tonight at 7 p.m. in the high school's auditorium.

Incumbents Jan Potts and Josh Gould along with newcomers Betsy Ruch and Daniel Cushing captured the four available seats on the board on election day.

Potts and Gould were the only two incumbents who sought reelection to their seats.

Gould was elected in 2005 while Potts was sworn in this past January to fill the unexpired term of William Mea.

Potts, Gould, Ruch and Cushing will be joining fellow board members Lisa Starczewski, Mary Croke-Parris, Debbie Dawson, Jill Slawecki and Paul Slaninka.

The board will also bid farewell to president Mark Casaday and board member Keith Wickstrom, as both men did not seek reelection.

During the school board meeting, the board will name new officers for the upcoming year.

Starczewski said that she believes that Slaninka will be nominated for president of the board. Currently the vice president, Starczewski said now is not the time for her to be president.

"I made a decision that being president wouldn't be right for me at this time," Starczewski. "It wouldn't be right because of my family and a lot of other obligations I have going on. I would like to remain vice president."

It is believed that Croke-Parris will remain as secretary, a position she's held for numerous years.

Dawson is currently the board's treasurer, and it isn't known if she will retain the position.

While Starczewski said it will be sad to see Casaday and Wickstrom leave, she said she feels the newcomers have worked hard to obtain their new positions.

"I believe that this will be a smooth transition for us all," she said. "Betsy and Dan have already been at a lot of meetings. They already met with the superintendent (Barbara Burke-Stevenson). They've also attended board training, as well as Jan. They've been diligent about getting up to speed on the issues. I don't anticipate any problems."

Tonight's meeting will be the only school board meeting this month and the final one for 2009.

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