Incumbents hold on in Yorkville School District 115 Board race

School board members Drs. Robert Brenart and Shawn Schumacher expressed happiness that the current board will remain intact after Tuesday’s election, saying they were well poised to lead the district post-pandemic.

Two members of the Yorkville School District 115 school board members won re-election Tuesday, April 6, finishing strong against a challenge from the secretary of the district’s bilingual parent advisory council.

Drs. Robert Brenart and Shawn Schumacher garnered 38% and 40% of the vote, defeating Jorge Ayala, who won 21.5%. Both winners said they were happy to keep the current school board intact as the district finishes out its third pandemic-time semester. Y115 was the only major school district in the county to offer students full-time, in-person classes during the current school year.

“I think this election is a testament to our board and really more than anything to our teachers our staff and our administrators - the courage that they’ve had to make this happen for this school, for our students during this pandemic,” Schumacher said in an interview Tuesday night.

The school official added that the board’s top priority in his new term will be returning the district back to 100% in-school capacity as much as possible, including the full return of extracurricular activities.

“We’re going to continue to work and move forward on our evolution 115... and do all of that with our taxpayer and constituents, being good rewards of the finances as best we can,” Schumacher stated.

Brenart, for his part, commended Ayala for joining the race, calling him “a good man” who’s “done a lot for the district.”

“I am glad that Jorge put up a good fight and it’s always good to have competition,” Brenart, vice-chair of the school board, said Tuesday.

The local optometrist remarked he hopes the district can continue to embrace new models of education that have materialized during the pandemic.

“Fortunately between administration, teachers and the community I think we have a majority that are willing to investigate those changes for the better,” Brenart said. “There’s no individual priority here. What’s most important is to make sure we set up the right students, so every student can benefit maximally from their education and move on to a post-secondary one that will give them an ability to support themselves in their future.”

Lucas Robinson

Lucas Robinson covers politics, courts, schools and the pandemic in Kendall County and Yorkville for Shaw Media. His work has previously appeared in the Chicago Reader, the Buenos Aires Times, Open Secrets and USAToday. He grew up in Muncie, Indiana.