first_imgLaura Williams, president of the Teachers Association of Norwalk-La Mirada, said the election results can only be helpful to Norwalk-La Mirada teachers. “It means that we have a voice on decisions,” she said. “I think we’re feeling pretty good right now.” Norwalk-La Mirada incumbent Pauline Deal, who also was endorsed by the teachers and won, said even with five teachers on the seven-member board, little will change. “It hasn’t affected anything with four teachers and three community members,” Deal said. “Lorraine seems really level-headed and has a good grasp of budgets. I don’t know what would change.” Other teacher-endorsed candidates also said teachers won’t have any more power. “I am not beholden to anybody. If anybody looks at my record, they know that’s not the case,” said Schneider, formerly on the South Whittier School Board for 18 years. The associations helped their candidates by giving money and providing manpower for things such as going door-to-door and phone banking. The latter was especially evident in the Norwalk-La Mirada race, said Deal, an association-endorsed candidate. “Clearly the union endorsement had to have helped,” Deal said. “In the past, we had union endorsements, but they didn’t do anything,” she said. “This time, they did three mailings, phone banking, precinct walking, and an automated phone call.” Postcards supporting Deal, Neal and incumbent Karen Morrison also were mailed. In other races, the teachers gave $3,000 to Elbling in the East Whittier School District race, $4,000 to Schneider and incumbent Ralph Pacheco in the Whittier Union High School District race, and $7,500 to Marcella Calderon and David Vela in the Montebello Unified School District race. All of these candidates won. Some said they didn’t just win because of the endorsements. “You have to have substance to your campaign,” Elbling said. “You have to have a message and demonstrate you’re knowledgeable.” mike.sprague@sgvn.com (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3022160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREStriving toward a more perfect me: Doug McIntyre “It shows that voters respect the viewpoint of teachers,” Newcomer said. “Having their support is a positive. It might not be the only thing voters look at, but it’s one important aspect of voters making up their mind.” Teacher-endorsed candidates won eight of nine seats in the East Whittier City, Montebello Unified, Norwalk-La Mirada Unified and Whittier Union High school districts. The lone loss came in the East Whittier City School District where Angel Gallardo, a career and technical education coordinator at Pomona Unified School District, placed fourth. While some might think the victories give the teachers too much power, Newcomer said he doesn’t think it’s much of a change or a big deal. “You will have board members who understand what’s going on in the classroom,” he said. “I don’t see evidence of that authority being abused, especially locally.” Whittier-area teacher associations appeared to be the big victors in Tuesday’s school board elections, knocking off an incumbent and picking up two open seats. Richard LeGaspi, who was seeking a third term on the Norwalk-La Mirada Unified School District board, lost to teacher Lorraine Neal. Teacher-endorsed candidates Dimitri Elbling and Tim Schneider, respectively, also won open seats on the East Whittier City and Whittier Union High school district boards. “I think it was a good day (for teachers),” said Whittier Mayor Owen Newcomer, also a professor of political science at Rio Hondo College. last_img

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