Bartlett wins drawing for school board seat

DEARBORN, Mo. — Nearly a week after the municipal election, North Platte finally found out who would fill the last spot on the board of education.

On Monday, April 9, Karen Bartlett and Trace Stone gathered in the superintendent’s office for a random drawing to determine the winner for the remaining seat to replace current board president Michael Fisher.

The two tied during last Tuesday’s election and agreed to settle the winner this way rather than have a special election that would’ve cost the district upwards of $10,000.

 CODY THORN/Citizen photo North Platte superintendent Karl Matt, right, takes the name North Platte High School principal Michelle Johnson drew out of a purple box with the names of the candidates Karen Bartlett and Trace Stone in it to break the tie for a seat on the North Platte Board of Education. Bartlett became the winner of the drawing.

CODY THORN/Citizen photo
North Platte superintendent Karl Matt, right, takes the name North Platte High School principal Michelle Johnson drew out of a purple box with the names of the candidates Karen Bartlett and Trace Stone in it to break the tie for a seat on the North Platte Board of Education. Bartlett became the winner of the drawing.

Superintendent Karl Matt put each candidate’s name on 15 slips, folded them up and put them in a purple box. Then, North Platte High School principal Michelle Johnson drew the winner out of the box. Matt then announced the winner — Bartlett.

“It is different,” she said of waiting for the winning name to be picked. “You really don’t know what will happen. We are very fortunate there are people to step up and run for the position. I was good either way, it was a 50-50 chance for anyone. I’m excited to help.”

Bartlett, who was the chairperson on the vote yes campaign that passed the school bond in 2016, used this situation as a teaching lesson for her son, Landon, showing him the importance of just one vote.

Stone mentioned a similar situation with his daughter.

“They are doing ratio and probability and I told her this is what I will do tonight,” Stone said. “I asked her what is my probability of winning? I needed to know. She thought for a while and said I still have a 50 percent chance.”

Buchanan County swayed the Platte County election results this year for North Platte.

Incumbent Kerry Brooke Hyde received 258 votes in Platte County and an additional 24 votes in Buchanan County, cinching her re-election to the board.

Bartlett received 205 votes in Platte County, outpacing opponent Stone with 199. However, in Buchanan County, Barlett picked up only eight votes compared to 14 for Stone. Each candidate had 213 votes.

Bartlett said she was getting text messages from friends congratulating her on the victory after seeing the Platte County results only.  Moments later, she got a call from Matt to inform her of the tie and the scenarios needed to break that tie.