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Idaho school board unknowingly violated open meetings law

ARIMO, Idaho (AP) — A school district board has unknowingly violated the Idaho open meetings law for years after conducting its entire annual superintendent evaluation behind closed doors, a board chairman said.

Marsh Valley School District 21 Board Chairman K.G. Fonnesbeck said the board recently discovered approving the superintendent’s evaluation and contractual changes in one motion in executive sessions was a violation, Idaho State Journal reports.

Fonnesbeck was voted the new chairman at a Tuesday board meeting after 13 years as a school board member, district officials said.

The board first learned it was committing a violation when it was notified by attorneys for the state Department of Education last month that approving Superintendent Marvin Hansen’s evaluation, contract extension and pay increase during a closed-door session in December was against the law, Fonnesbeck said.

Board members opened the meeting Tuesday by acknowledging the December violation and voided the approvals for Hansen, officials said.

They also re-approved Hansen’s evaluation and contract extension in separate motions while postponing a decision on his raise, board members said.

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