Tracy Olasimbo. Credit: Chicago Volunteer Doulas

Evanston Skokie School District 65 board member Anya Tanyavutti announced Monday night that she’s resigning from the board, effective immediately.

Anya Tanyavutti.

Tanyavutti’s resignation came at the same meeting at which the board announced the appointment of Tracy Olasimbo to fill the vacancy created by the resignation in August of Marquese Weatherspoon.

Olasimbo  is family engagement coordinator at the Evanston Public Library and chairs the board of Chicago Volunteer Doulas where Tanyavutti is executive director.

Thirteen candidates had applied for the Weatherspoon vacancy.

Three board seats — the one Olasimbo was just appointed to, the one until now held by Tanyavutti and the one held by Board President Sergio Hernandez — will be up for election next April.

Olasimbo has said she plans to run next year for a full four-year term on the board.

In her application for appointment, Olasimbo said the district “must address the blatant and subconscious racism that our students and families have to deal with on a constant basis.”

She called the board “a governing and supportive entity for the superintendent” and said she “would like to address the lack of teacher/educator accountability.”

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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  1. I am growing alarmed at the Board’s emerging culture of skirting democratic accountability at the voting booth through the practice of resigning and then appointing replacements (who are, largely, just proxies for those who left, but who don’t have the same baggage with voters).

    Also, Tanyavutti’s tenure coincided with MORE THAN A THOUSAND families leaving the district. Calling her term anything but a failure is outrageous – she oversaw the decay of the entire district.

  2. The Board really does need to ask why so many people can’t bother to fill their commitment to voters to serve out a term.

    Not that I’m disappointed that Tanyavutti is leaving. As other comments show, she doesn’t have the best record.

    Let’s also thank Mayor Biss for not appointing Tanyavutti to the 2nd ward aldermanic position.

    Of course, given Tanayvutti’s lack of self-awareness I could see her quitting D65 to ramp up a run for the 2nd ward seat. Like Sarah Palin in Alaska she will face questions about her commitment to the seat given her inability to serve out her term as an elected official.

    Let’s wish Tanyavutti a peaceful, private retirement from public life!

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