With social distancing requirements in place and a prohibition against large gatherings, members of the Lansing Board of Education plan to interview seven people who have expressed interest in filling a vacancy on the board. But the interviews will be handled “electronically,” the superintendent said.

Board members discussed how they want to proceed with filling a vacancy on the board during a special meeting Monday.

Because of concerns about the spread of the coronavirus known as COVID-19, board members conducted the meeting by using an online videoconferencing service instead of gathering in person.

Board members plan to fill a vacancy created by the recent resignation of former board member Debbie Deere.

Deere announced she was moving out of the school district. She resigned from the board last month.

Board members have the authority to appoint someone to fill the vacancy until the next school board election in 2021. At that time, voters will select someone to serve the remainder of the unexpired term.

Board members accepted applications from people who are interested in serving on the board. The applications were due last week.

Cheryl Runnebaum, Roy Foster, Susie Werth, Steve Buffo, Jason Dunlap, Carla Wiegers and Peter Im have applied to be considered for the appointment to the board, according to Superintendent Dan Wessel.

Board members plan to meet April 6 to interview the candidates and possibly make the appointment.

The meeting will be open to the public.

Ahead of Monday’s special meeting, district officials provided a link to enable members of the public to access the online meeting.

Also Monday, Lansing school board members approved an application to the state for a waiver of attendance requirements.

The application comes after the governor ordered schools in Kansas to be closed for the remainder of the school year amid concerns about the spread of the coronavirus.

The waiver application includes information for the district’s plan for providing education to students for the remainder of the school year even though the school buildings will be closed.

Board members also approved a memorandum of understanding with the local teachers union regarding expectations for the remainder of the school year.

Board members also approved a resolution to pay all regular employees of the school district through the remainder of the school year.

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