TOPSHAM — Four Topsham board members have terms expiring on the Maine School Administrative District 75 board in November.

The 14-member board represents students in Bowdoin, Bowdoinham, Harpswell and Topsham.

Nomination papers for candidates have been available for a week. School board members whose terms are expiring include Andrea Imrie, William Keleher, Sarah Ward and Jeffrey Wolkens.

Keleher said Monday he plans to run again for the school board.

Imrie, who is finishing her fourth year on the board, said she still hasn’t decided if she’ll run for reelection in November. It’s a time-demanding job that has involved long meetings and extensive research, she said.

The other two board members, Ward and Wolkens, did not immediately comment on whether they will seek reelection Monday.

Wolkens is finishing his third term on the school board.

According to Topsham Town Clerk Linda Dumont, only two people who have taken out paperwork to collect signatures to get on the November ballot — John Forsyth and Mary Hobson.

Keleher and Ward were both elected in 2019 to serve the remaining year of unfinished terms on the school board. Matthew Drewette-Card resigned in July 2019 for family and professional reasons and veteran board member Jane Scease resigned in September 2019 because she moved to Brunswick.

Drewette-Card’s announcement about his impending resignation in April came on the tails of another board shakeup. Harpswell representatives and longtime board members Joanne Rogers and David Johnson resigned from the school board in early 2019, stating they no longer had the trust of the board and shouldn’t continue to serve.

In March 2019, the board voted to boot its chairperson, Kim Totten of Bowdoin, from her leadership position. The vote came after Keleher, who wasn’t on the school board yet, and Brandy Robertson of Bowdoin started an online petition concerning Totten.

While school officials remained guarded about just what has spurred discontent among the board at that time, some of the disagreement seems to stem from the board’s choice of the former interim superintendent Bob Lucy to fill the vacancy left by Interim Superintendent Dan Chuhta.

More recently, the school board has held lengthy and sometimes contentious online board meetings as they’ve debated how to respond to the educational and financial implications of the coronavirus pandemic. This included debating a resolution in July asking that board members all refer to the virus by its scientific name. While rejected, the resolution was proposed after a board member referred to the virus as the Wuhan virus, which is the city in China the pandemic is thought to have originated from.

Topsham select board race

The Topsham Board of Selectmen could see a new name on the ballot in November. Incumbents David Douglass and Ruth Lyons have both submitted their nomination paperwork, Dumont said Monday. She hadn’t yet validated they have enough signatures.

Dumont said Alexander Aponte has taken out papers to collect signatures to run as a selectman but hadn’t returned them as of Monday.

Nomination papers for Topsham’s Nov. 3 municipal election are due in the town clerk’s office by 3 p.m. on Sept. 4 with between 25 and 100 signatures of Topsham voters.

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