Prairie Grove School Board Six-Member Ruling Establishment Re-Elected

There was tension in the Prairie Grove School District 46 library Tuesday as audience members and a lone board member fought awarding of a multi-year contract prior the swearing in of new board members.

And, audience interest was piqued when Superintendent Mary Fasbender announced that the McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office has filed a Freedom of Information request.

But come to find out, the timing of the contract renewal didn’t make any difference. That’s because three in the ruling six-member clique won re-election.

Running handily ahead in the small school district were Board President Laura Domoto and her running mates Karen Bowman and Linda Rokosik.

Two of their challengers—Sharon Rogowski and David Etling—were in the audience.

Both incumbents and challengers were awaiting the election returns when I left.

Here’s what the final returns looked like when they came in:

Karen Bowman – 613
Linda Rokosik – 610
Laura Domoto – 599
Sharon Rogowski – 467
David Etling – 446
Tara Rand – 367

It was an exciting meeting.

More on that after I get some sleep, including how the board members instructed a principal to call the Prairie Grove Police because I was supposedly “heckling” the board members while they were behind closed doors.

Laughing in the hall outside the secret session as one board member was completely losing her cool, yes.

Even laughing loudly.

Taking pictures through the windows, yes.

Heckling, no.

You won’t believe what happened after the public was excluded from the meeting.

You won’t believe the brow beating that lone minority member Charlotte Kremer took. If she wasn’t physically cringing, I’d be surprised.

Or what 12-year board member Karen Bowman shouted so loud it could be heard in the hall.

These folks make every other public meeting I have ever attended look civil.

Well, maybe it wasn’t as bad as the closing night of Illinois House of Representatives when State Representative Doug Kane tore up his rulebook. Then, Democrat Kane threw the remains at not-yet-Speaker Mike Madigan, who was in the chair for Speaker Bill Redmond. That was right before the very hefty State Representatives Jimmy Taylor and Taylor Pouncey each grabbed one of Madigan’s arms and physically carried him off the podium to the protection of a back room. That was after Madigan gaveling the adjournment of the spring session through without a vote.

Maybe that was worse than what I and other saw Tuesday night.

But, considering the level of decibels coming out of Bowman’s throat and her gestures, I assure you she was not being ladylike.

Not exactly the image she portrays to her constituents, I would imagine.

Here is what Northwest Herald reporter Telma Guzman wrote about the meeting.

OK. I’ll relent.

Here’s a picture of the not-so-gentlewoman Karen Bowman right before she began shouting at the top of her lungs at minority board member Charlotte Kremer.

I wish I had had had a video camera.

Bowman’s completely out-of-control performance would have been at least a local hit on You Tube and could be shown at school board association meetings as how not to act at a public or even a secret meeting.

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Top right is Prairie Grove School Superintendent Mary Fasbender, who got the three-year extension on her contract, worth $450,000, according to the NW Herald. Top right is a picture of Karen Bowman in the open meeting. To her left, below Fasbender is a picture of board President Laura Domoto. The board member who is reading a letter from Prairie Grove Village President Michael Breseman complaining about a fact-challenged, last-minute campaign written by Domoto is Charlotte Kremer.

And, at the bottom, is one of the pictures I took of Karen Bowman right before she started shouting loud enough to be heard on the other side of the hall outside the library.

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