Incumbents in at SPUHS, new faces for SPESD as voters select trustees

November 10, 2000
Santa Paula News
By Peggy Kelly Santa Paula TimesThe Santa Paula High School District held steady when two incumbents were reelected, the exact opposite of the Elementary District, which will see two new board members after two seats opened up.Eric Barragan and Robert Salas easily cruised to victory in the SPUHS district, with semi-official results that would be almost impossible to change when absentee ballots are counted.Salas was the top vote-getter with 44 percent, 4,319 votes. Barragan won also won his second term with 33.1 percent of the vote, 3,246. Coming in third was Dr. Steven Shuel, who had 22.6 percent, 2,222 votes.Shuel had served one term on the elementary district board when he decided to try for the high school position. He noted that after he made the decision to run he realized his schedule was tight, leaving him only one weekend for campaigning.Ofelia de la Torre was the top vote-getter for the Santa Paula Elementary School District board, 41.5 percent, 3,100 votes.
“I had wonderful support,” and her experience with the district - as a former SPESD board trustee, member of the Personnel Commission and as a teacher’s aide - was a “bonus. . .I’m really looking forward to working with the district,” especially on raising stagnant test scores and campus rehabilitation, she said.Also elected was political newcomer George Morgan who received 32 percent of the vote, 2,388 votes. Chris Graham, who ran for the SPESD board two years ago placed third with 26.1 percent, 1,949 votes.Morgan and Graham had very low profile campaigns.All the candidates for the school boards showed concern over test scores, a top issue during the two races.

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