The acting chief of Ketchikan’s school district may be made permanent. Ketchikan’s School Board voted 4-2 on Dec. 27 to open contract negotiations with Interim Superintendent Beth Lougee.

She’s served in the temporary post since Robert Boyle resigned in late 2018.

A community survey on the acting superintendent’s performance had been slated over the winter break. But acting board president Bridget Mattson says there wasn’t time before the board’s mid-January meeting. And a majority of board members wanted to move forward. 

Board members Diane Gubatayo and Sonya Skan opposed moving forward with making Lougee permanent. Both said they supported a more formal search process.

Board members Bridget Mattson, Jordan Tabb, Leslie Becker and Rachel Breithaupt all voted in favor of starting negotiations. Breithaupt said she’d heard praise for Lougee from trusted confidants.

In other business, the board unanimously accepted former board president Matt Eisenhower’s resignation. Eisenhower announced he’d step down earlier this month. In a mid-December Facebook post, Eisenhower said he’s accepted a job as a baseball coach at a school in Roswell, New Mexico.

The board also took the first step toward filling Eisenhower’s seat by declaring a vacancy. Applications are available at the district’s website, and here. The school board clerk will take applications by email at, by fax at 247-3820 or in person until 1 p.m. on Jan 13. 

After applications are gathered, the board will interview candidates at the Jan. 22 board meeting in open session. The appointee will serve until the October 2020 election.