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Winners Emerge out of Capistrano School Board Races

Michael Parham for Trustee Area 2; Gary Pritchard returns to the board as a new representative for Trustee Area 4; Judy Bullocks retains her seat in Trustee Area 7.

Nov. 8 saw three Capistrano School Board seats on the ballot. The results has two new trustees and one incumbent elected to the board.

San Juan Capistrano, Ladera Ranch, Las Flores, Rancho Mission Viejo, and parts of Coto de Caza are covered by Trustee Area 2 which was won by Michael Parham. Parham will serve a short term which ends on Dec.13 2024, as this was designated as a special election to replace Pamela Braunstein. Parham retained 45% of the votes, emerging ahead of Kira Davis’ 41%. Jessica Hubbard got 14%.

Parham’s first order of business is to build credibility with his district. He believes this is foundational to gain the support for school funding and improving learning facilities which are in serious need of repair. Parham would like to see Capistrano students be better prepared for future jobs through the inclusion of curriculum that prepares students for technological data, coding and analysis.

As Area 2 Trustee, Parham will represent: Chaparral Elementary School; Esencia K-8 School; Ladera Ranch Elementary School; Oso Grande Elementary School; Wagon Wheel Elementary School;

He also covers: Ladera Ranch Middle School and San Juan Hills High School

Parham is a Certified Public accountant who has spent many years in global banking and auditing.

In the race for Trustee Area 4, James Glantz’s 42% result fell short of Gary Pritchard who got 50% of the vote. Darin Patel got 9% of the vote.

Area 4 encompasses portions of Laguna Niguel and Dana Point.

Pritchard is a former CUSD board member who, at the time of his tenure, introduced the first STEAM programs to Capistrano. This time around Pritchard aims to promote fiscal responsibility through better use of tax dollars to improve schools and cut wasteful spending. He believes strong schools support property values and the community as a whole.

Pritchard previously backed an $889m dollar bond measure which voters rejected in a 55% to 44% vote. The measure would have greatly increased homeowner taxes.

Pritchard will be the representative for: Hidden Hills Elementary School; John S. Malcom Elementary School; Laguna Niguel Elementary; Moulton Elementary School; George White Elementary School.

He will also be responsible for: Niguel Hills Middle School

Pritchard will replace the current President of Capistrano’s school board, Martha McNicholas who did not run for re-election.

Incumbent Judy Bullocks assured her return to the board for Trustee Area 7 defeating Janette Contreras with 55% of the vote compared to her 45%. This will be the sixth year Bullocks will serve on the board. Her focus is individual student success. Bullocks advocates for increased post-secondary opportunities, innovation, and the preservation of American values in education.

Portions of Rancho Santa Margarita, Mission Viejo, and Coto de Caza fall into Area 7.

The schools that will be under her purview are: Arroyo Vista K-8 School; Bathgate Elementary School; Castille Elementary School; Las Flores Elementary School; Philip Reilly Elementary School; Tijeras Creek Elementary School

Bullocks will also oversee: Las Flores Middle School; Newhart Middle School and Tesoro High School

Bullocks will seek active engagement of parents and students while evaluating district policies.

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