News

PV school board calls special election

Deadlocked over a decision on whom to appoint to a fifth seat on the board of the Portola Valley School District, the board decided Thursday night to call a special election to fill the seat.

It will be an all-mail election and will be held Tuesday, May 6.

The current board is made up of two newly elected trustees -- Judith Mendelsohn and Steve Humphreys -- plus the two continuing members -- Don Collat and Ray Villareal.

Ms. Mendelsohn and Ray Villareal favor Karen Jordan to fill the fifth seat. Ms. Jordan's four-year term on the board ended this month and she chose not to run in the November election.

Steve Humphreys and Don Collat favor Brad Turner, the entrepreneur who came in third in the November election for two seats on the board.

Ms. Jordan and Mr. Turner were the only ones to apply for the appointment to fill the remaining two years of the term of Donna Carano, who resigned from the board Oct. 18.

Three votes were required to make the appointment and none of the board members would switch sides.

Comments

Posted by w, a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Dec 14, 2007 at 11:47 am

Another election! They couldn't have waited a month for the June 3 election? Another thing that I haven't seen mentioned is why did Karen Jordan change her mind and decide to seek the open seat after not running for reelection? Was the shorter term appealing or did she just change her mind and not want to leave the school board?


Posted by Richard Hine, managing editor of The Almanac
on Dec 20, 2007 at 10:25 am

Richard Hine is a registered user.

With respect to the question of why Karen Jordan decided to seek an appointment to two years on the school board after deciding not to run for election to a four-year term, Almanac staff writer Marjorie Mader provides this information:
Karen Jordan said she chose not to run for a four-year term in November because she strongly believes current board members should have students in the district. Her two children are seventh-graders at Corte Madera and would graduate in June 2009 before the four-year-term would expire.
Ms. Jordan said that as an appointed board member she would work to continue implementing the district's strategic plan, draw on her financial background in dealing with projected cuts in the state budget, and devote time to serving the community.
Richard Hine's note: Below is a link to the Almanac's newspaper story about the school board's decision to call a special election in May to fill the remaining term of Donna Carano, who resigned from the board Oct. 18. That term expires in December 2009.
-- "Portola Valley school trustees deadlock, call special election": Web Link .

EDITOR'S NOTE: The Almanac published this story in it's Jan. 30, 2008, issue:
Karen Jordan, a former board member of the Portola Valley School District, says a story in the Jan. 23 issue of The Almanac incorrectly stated her reasons for applying for a two-year term on the board after deciding she would not seek re-election to a four-year term.
"I never stated and do not believe that 'board members should have children in the district,'" she said in an e-mail.
Ms. Jordan said it's irrelevant whether board members have children in the district and, in fact, board members without children in the district bring "a diversity of perspectives that would contribute positively to the board."
She said she did not run for the four-year term because her children would start attending high school in the fall of 2009, and "I wanted to take the time and energy that I have volunteered (on the board) and apply it to my twins' high school experiences."
The two-year term, which would end in December 2009, after her children started high school, "fit with my desire to turn my energies to support their high school years," she said.



Posted by Richard Hine, managing editor of The Almanac
on Dec 20, 2007 at 10:47 am

Richard Hine is a registered user.

With regard to the question of why the school board called a special election, below is an excerpt from a recent school board letter to the Portola Valley School District community.

"While we had two excellent candidates who could serve the board very ably, during the course of our deliberations it became clear that members of the community and of the board held strong opinions and that they were applying different criteria in assessing the strengths of the two candidates.
"We on the board all agree that in most decisions facing us, we would willingly make a difficult and potentially unpopular decision, if we were convinced it was the right decision. In this particular case, however, we had a difference of opinion about who would be the better appointee, and we had feedback from the community expressing strong and differing views.
"Given such differences of opinion and lack of agreement, we believe it's best for the community to participate in the selection. As a result, we have called a special mail-in election, to be completed by May 6th, to fill the remaining vacancy on the school board."


Posted by Richard Hine, managing editor of The Almanac
on Jan 31, 2008 at 9:24 am

Richard Hine is a registered user.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The Almanac published this story in its Jan. 30, 2008, issue:
Karen Jordan, a former board member of the Portola Valley School District, says a story in the Jan. 23 issue of The Almanac incorrectly stated her reasons for applying for a two-year term on the board after deciding she would not seek re-election to a four-year term.
"I never stated and do not believe that 'board members should have children in the district,'" she said in an e-mail.
Ms. Jordan said it's irrelevant whether board members have children in the district and, in fact, board members without children in the district bring "a diversity of perspectives that would contribute positively to the board."
She said she did not run for the four-year term because her children would start attending high school in the fall of 2009, and "I wanted to take the time and energy that I have volunteered (on the board) and apply it to my twins' high school experiences."
The two-year term, which would end in December 2009, after her children started high school, "fit with my desire to turn my energies to support their high school years," she said.


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