(PRESS RELEASE) Wausau, WI- Candidates Jon Creisher, Cody Nikolai and Karen Vandenberg have jointly  called for an end to politics on the Wausau School Board. “Since last June, the political posturing of  some board members has resulted in keeping students out of school and locked in a virtual and  hybrid learning nightmare,” said Jon Creisher. “In November, the board finally returned students to  class but only on a part-time basis. However, the damage had already been devastating and  widespread. Freshman students alone saw a 350% increase in failing grades, and enrollment fell by  over 430 students.” 

“We have seen increased truancy, mental health issues, substance abuse, and massive equity issues  among our most vulnerable students and families with unrecoverable academic loss.” Said Karen Vandenberg. “Further, we have seen a significant decline in academic motivation and changed  trajectories for countless students. It should come as no surprise that 6 out of the 7 top ranked school districts in the state of Wisconsin have something in common, they have all provided a 5 days/week  in-person instruction option since their doors opened in September.”  

“School districts like Hamilton, Muskego, New Berlin and Elmbrook, which is similar in size to  Wausau, put in the necessary planning and effort to ensure their teachers were safe in school and  that their students would continue to succeed academically,” stated Cody Nikolai. “The Wausau board  has continued to delay, instead saying ‘we need more data, more information’ before deciding to send  the students back to a full in-person option. They have failed to lead.”  

“The Wausau School Board is holding a special meeting on Monday January 18th primarily to finalize  the details of another referendum,” added Creisher. “The last referendum failed because the parents  in the district had no confidence in the School Board to have their children’s best interests in mind.  We call on the School Administration and Board to immediately bring forward a plan that provides a  full in-person option for all students and delivers the high-level academic achievement and educational opportunities commensurate with current and requested funding.”   


Jon Creisher