Although people in many school districts will be headed to the polls April 3 to decide who will represent them on boards of education, those in Independence will not see that election on their ballots.

Although people in many school districts will be headed to the polls April 3 to decide who will represent them on boards of education, those in Independence will not see that election on their ballots.

Only three people filed applications for the three open positions for the Independence Board of Education. They were approved and certified by the Jackson County Board of Election Commissioners. That means, under state law, no election is required.

Incumbents Ken Johnston and Ann Franklin will return to the board along with Greg Finke, who will replace Blake Roberson. Roberson was not eligible to seek another term because of term limits. All three people will be sworn in at the April 10 board meeting. Board members serve six-year terms.

Johnston is a retired teacher, spending 29 years of his career at William Chrisman High School. He is currently teaching human relations at Graceland University in Independence. He is a member of the Bingham-Waggoner and the Nutra-Net boards and is a member of the Independence Host Lions Club, an organization in which he spent three years as president. He and his wife, Joan, have one daughter and four grandchildren.

“I look forward to the completion of the two new elementary schools and to continue to provide a high quality education for all students in the Independence School District,” he said. “One goal for this term is to help find a solution to issues that have arisen after the state removed the Kansas City School District’s accreditation. After all, it’s all about the students and their education.”

Franklin is a retired teacher who taught in the Fort Osage School District for 28 years. She is a member of the Jackson County Historical Society, the Vaile Victorian Society and the Bingham-Waggoner Historical Society. She and her husband, Dick, who served in the Missouri House of Representatives, have one son and two granddaughters.

“The Independence School District has earned the prestigious Distinction in Performance Award for the past six years, even when we annexed the former Kansas City schools. Our qualified and committed employees made this possible,” Franklin said. “It is the board’s goal and surely everyone’s goal to provide the best education possible for our students every year. As a retired teacher, I believe that the classroom teacher is the key to success and that effective communication keeps us informed and focused.”

Finke is vice president of Stewardship Capital. He is a registered investment adviser with concentration in financial planning. He is also pursuing a certified financial planner designation. In addition to his participation with the Chamber of Commerce, he is a LEAD graduate, a YouthFriend and member of the Rotary Club of Independence. He and wife, Mindi, have one son.

“I am proud that our school district continues to be recognized for its high level of achievement. Through my participation in the Independence School District’s Citizens Advisory Council and the November 2009 school bond campaign committee, I have seen what a powerful voice the school district can be for change in our community,” Finke said. “I wanted to be part of that conversation as we seek to make Independence a place where people want to live, work and play.”