Arlington school board member Michael E. Brunner, a Republican, has decided to ask the new Democratic-controlled County Board to reappoint him to the school board when his term expires June 30.
Brunner said he wants to stay on the board to help provide continuity as members weigh possible school closings this year.
"I don't see this as a partisan job. I think school issues are nonpartisan issues," Brunner said yesterday, adding that several county Democrats have urged him to seek reappointment.
In a letter to County Board Chairman Ellen M. Bozman, Brunner, associate administrator for the Department of Agriculture's Farmers Home Administration, cited his interest in and commitment to education, his accessibility to the public and his performance record.
Brunner, 39, was unanimously appointed to the school board by a Republican-controlled County Board 15 months ago, filling the unexpired term of O.U. Johansen, who resigned.
All five members of the school board are Republicans. The new Democratic County Board majority, all three of whose members have campaigned heavily on improving the school system, has an opportunity to shift the school board majority to the Democrats in the next 18 months.
Bozman could not be reached for comment yesterday. But her Democratic board colleage John G. Milliken, the board's vice chairman, said the County Board will soon be adopting procedures for selecting this year's school board appointee.
"I hope we will have a lot of candidates," Milliken said. "I consider Mike Brunner a good candidate."
Before the Republicans lost their County Board majority in last November's election, they had been sharply criticized for announcing or indicating school board designees before the deadline for applications.
Brunner, who has received high marks for his school board work from many county Democrats, said yesterday he hopes the County Board will accelerate the appointment process to avoid its becoming an overly political and emotional battle over potential elementary, intermediate and high school closings.