Knowledge key for schools

October 31, 2002

It is difficult to overstate the importance of school board

elections. Though they do not fall to the level of disinterest

typically applied to water boards and sanitation districts, neither

do they get the proper attention they deserve, considering that the

decisions made by school board members more immediately and more

lastingly affect the lives of almost every child than votes taken by

councils, state assemblies and even Congress.


In Huntington Beach, voters have choices in three different school

districts this Tuesday.

The least contentious, given that just four candidates are running

for the three seats, is the Huntington Beach City School District. In

this race, voters should support incumbents Shirley Carey and Robert

Mann as well as Bill Wallace. Carey and Mann both have earned more

time on the board. Both are well-versed in the issues facing the

district, noting the need to balance necessary construction with

prudent spending. They have helped guide the district as it reopened

Peterson School, built Seacliff Elementary and made improvements

elsewhere. They also demonstrate a passion for the students that will

benefit the district in the coming years. Wallace, who has earned

both Carey and Mann's support, has sent his children through the

schools and still has a child at Dwyer Middle School. He has shown

his commitment to the district by active involvement in committees,

such as the school bond steering committee, and PTAs. His pledge to

be a regular visitor to every school in the district is one he should

keep so he can maintain his understanding of the issues and

challenges facing all the campuses.

Voting the Ocean View School District offers more of a challenge,

with 10 candidates vying for just three spots. But the three

incumbents, Carol Kanode, Tracey Pellman and Pam Walker, all stand

above their competition. They bring the breadth of knowledge and

determination vital to public service. They have been active,

addressing needs at the district's libraries, in the classrooms and

on the playing fields. They understand the need to scrutinize the

budget when money statewide is scarce. Perhaps the greatest tribute

is Marine View Middle School's recognition as a National Blue Ribbon


Finally, there is the Huntington Beach Union High School District.

Once again, the choice for the three seats is diverse, with nine

candidates running. The clear choices are incumbents Bonnie Castrey,

Matthew Harper and Sallie Dashiell. They have deep ties to the

district: Harper is a graduate of Huntington Beach High School and

Dashiell a long-time employee, though far enough removed from that

post that concerns about conflict are minimized. And Castrey has been

a member of this community, active and engaged, for nearly three

decades. They will continue to work in the students' best interests,

making the tough decisions in ways that improve the environment at

all the high schools.

Huntington Beach Independent Articles Huntington Beach Independent Articles