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VanMeter won’t seek re-election to school board

After receiving a job promotion, former Yukon School Board President Rex VanMeter said he will not seek a second term on the board.
VanMeter, who served as the board’s president last year, said his new position as the chief operating officer with the Integris hospital system would make it difficult for him to continue on the board.
VanMeter said he plans to fulfill his current term but will not seek a second term in office.
The filing period for school board is Dec. 2-4.
VanMeter, until 2018, was the president of Integris Canadian Valley Hospital. However, he was promoted last year to become the president of Deaconess Hospital, which had recently been acquired by the Integris system.
In August, VanMeter was again promoted. This time it was to COO of the entire Integris system.
“It is a big job, and I don’t feel like I can do that and continue to serve on the board,” he said.
In addition, VanMeter said he wants to be able to spend more time with his family. He and his wife have three children, including a senior at Yukon High School, a fourth-grader and a junior at Oklahoma State University.
“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed serving on the board, and I liked being able to give back to the community. The work they are doing there (in the school district) is phenomenal, and they are headed in the right direction. I look forward to seeing how they progress,” he said.
Looking back on his time on the board, VanMeter said he was proud of what has been accomplished, including support of local teachers as they fought at the state level for additional funds for the classroom.
In addition, he was supportive of making sure the district’s administration focused on improving state testing results and key metrics that enhance how students learn.
“We’ve had better discussions about the outcome,” he said.
Also during VanMeter’s service, the district supported an effort to pass a $53 million bond issue that has helped fund several key projects across the district, including the construction of Redstone Intermediate School.
That facility is scheduled to open next August and will house students in the fourth through six grades.
“The community of Yukon has been very supportive. Any time a community supports a bond issue it is huge,” he said.
VanMeter serves in Post No. 5, which represents most of the district north of Wagner Road. In addition, the office also represents a small area south and west of Garth Brooks Boulevard.
Candidates for the position must live within the boundaries of the office.
The primary election is Feb. 11.
VanMeter’s seat will not be the only one on the ballot.
A seat vacated earlier this year by Don Rowe also will be decided.
Former Yukon police officer Chris Cunningham was appointed to replace Rowe, who resigned because he moved from his zone.
Because Rowe had been elected earlier in the year, the remainder of the five-year term will be decided in a special election that also will be held Feb. 11.

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