Cost per student Mercer $25,097,
Wis. $13,505, Nation $11,762
ACT comp. score Mercer 17.0,
Wis. 19.6, Lakeland UHS 20.0,
Hurley 18.7; perfect score 36.0
Mercer DPI Report Card score
lowest of all 421 Wis. districts

Sunday, July 28, 2019

July School Board Meeting 


After limping along with two of its five members missing from the Mercer School Board, the Board appears ready to fill the two vacancies.  In so doing it will have the chance to break the mold which has seen a Board that neglected its responsibilities to provide a good education for the children and manage school affairs in an honest and open environment.

The agenda for the 5 p.m. Tuesday, April 30, School Board meeting includes these Action Items:

            Board appointee candidate session

                        -- Introductions, open mic for/by candidates

                        -- Questions by board members

                        -- Closing comments

            Board selection of appointees to fill open board positions

Also, on Tuesday’s agenda, in closed session, the Board will consider a temporary Administrator’s contract for Sheri Kopka.  Kopka, the school’s science teacher, was selected at the June meeting to fill in for Administrator Erik Torkelson who was granted a medical leave while recovering from a stroke.

Contracts will also be discussed for Tricia Thompson, business manager; Adam Kussard, building and grounds director; and the teaching staff. 

While all of the School Board candidates’ names have not been announced, it is reported that five persons have applied for the two positions.  It was announced at an earlier Board meeting that Rich Pegg, a retired attorney, and Sue Loth, a retired schoolteacher, have applied for the positions. Also, Jeff Nehring, a Mercer dentist and a former School Board member, has reportedly applied. 

Since its April meeting, the three-member Board has wrestled with how to fill the positions since no policy existed.  In the interim, the Board approved an amended policy.

The two vacancies were created with the resignations of Noel Brandt and Karl Anderson.  The three-member board now consists of Bob Davis as president, newly elected Jim Hannemann, and Micki Pierce-Holmstrom, a hangover from the old puppet Board.

That puppet Board consisted of Administrator Torkelson’s mother-in-law Kelly Kohegyi, and Torkelson supporters Denise Thompson, Deanna Pierpont and Noel Brandt.  Kohegyi and Thompson were voted off the Board in School Board elections, and Pierpont chose not to seek reelection in last election. 


  1. If Bob Davis and Jim Hanneman want to operate the open like they said they would, they should announce the terms of the contracts (base pay and summary of benefits) when they vote on them after coming out of closed session. In the past this was kept secret unless you filed a public records request.

  2. In the past they also stated nothing happened, yet people were grabbing extra money. Salaries & benefits should be available as public information.

    Especially in light of the fact that some of them are guilty of getting extra money without approval.

  3. Like I stated before, you need to look into the behavior of those that were under suspicion of wrong doing and maybe file charges again them since the judge was friends with some of the board and ex-board members! Is Tingstad afraid?? Come on people are you happy when you are taken advantage of or what?

  4. Any news on who was chosen for the board?

    1. Jeff Nehring and Sue Loth. Bob Davis and Jim Hannemann were elected to the board in April. And then we have Micki Pierce who we have to get rid of in the 2020 election.