Grand Forks School Board fills vacant seat

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Members of the Grand Forks School Board approved the application of Jeff Manley to fill the vacancy left by Christopher Douthit who resigned in July to accept a one-year position as interim principal at Schroeder Middle School. Manley's first meeting will be Sept. 30.

Board members asked Manley, the only applicant for the seat, a few questions before voting.

“We have to give students the tools they need to succeed,” Manley said. “And one of those tools is good buildings and great instructors in those buildings.”

Manley, an employee of Altru Health System, said his background and knowledge of data analytics will be useful as the School Board considers facilities planning.

In his position with Altru, he is experienced in “digging into data,” he said.


Concerning the costs of maintaining and repairing the district’s aging facilities, “you have to drill down into those numbers and see why those things are happening," he said.

In response to a question from Amber Flynn, board vice president, about his stance on taxes and a possible referendum, Manley said: “I am not opposed to the ‘ask,’ but we need to support it with data numbers, (give voters) proof that we need that (money).”

Manley, a native of Grand Forks, attended Viking Elementary School and Schroeder Middle School. He graduated from Red River High School in 1986.

He and his wife, Mindi Manley, who also works at Health Altru System, have a son, Garrett, a senior at Grand Forks Central High School.

Manley will be eligible to run in next School Board election in June, Berge said.

Douthit also will be eligible to run, he said.

Pamela Knudson is a features and arts/entertainment writer for the Grand Forks Herald.

She has worked for the Herald since 2011 and has covered a wide variety of topics, including the latest performances in the region and health topics.

Pamela can be reached at or (701) 780-1107.
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