Mystery Education Theater 3000

WCCUSD BOE Election: Main Institutional Endorsements

There are 10 candidates running for 3 seats on the West Contra Costa Unified School District Board of Education. 2 incumbents are running; Charles Ramsey is not running for re-election.

One aspect of the campaign process is getting endorsements from various organizations and the main local paper. Just like I did in 2012, here is the current scorecard:

El Cerrito Democratic Club (0)
Central Labor Council (2)XX
County Democratic Party (3)XXX
Local One (4)XXXX
Contra Costa Times (3)XXX
SFER Action Network - West Contra Costa (2)XX
CCSA Advocates (2)XX

The Candidates

  1. CHESTER R. STEVENS (Hercules)
  2. MISTER PHILLIPS (Richmond)
  3. ELIZABETH “LIZ” BLOCK (El Cerrito)
  6. VALERIE CUEVAS (Richmond)
  7. ELAINE MERRIWEATHER (Richmond, Incumbent)
  8. RAQUEL DONOSO (Richmond)
  10. MADELINE KRONENBERG (El Cerrito, Incumbent)

The Endorsers

  1. The Democratic Party is pretty much The Party in West County. The El Cerrito Democratic Club has been an active party club in the district for a long time. (New ones for Hercules and West County have started.) Endorsements require a 60% threshold, which may explain the lack of any endorsement this time.
  2. The Central Labor Council is the county version of the AFL-CIO. They are connected through the construction program for the school and the unions for employees. They are a big “door hanger” presence, too.
  3. The county Democratic Party has an elected Central Committee. As I was saying, the Democratic Party is The Party around here.
  4. The United Teachers of Richmond (UTR)  is the district’s teachers’ union.
  5. Public Employees Union, Local One is the union for most of the non-teacher employees in WCCUSD.
  6. The Contra Costa Times is the local paper that pays the most attention to WCCUSD.
  7. SFER Action Network – West Contra Costa is a local summer-only student project of the Students for Educational Reform, a group some consider an “astroturf” group.
  8. CCSA Advocates is the advocacy arm of the California Charter Schools Association. It’s a state-wide organization, but some people are making them an issue at the local level this election.

Update: 10/16/2014

Categories: WCCUSD

WCCUSD Candidate Forum: Richmond » « Contact Info for SEC Investigation of School Board


  1. Ayana Kirkland Young

    October 31, 2014 — 12:38 am

    Hi Wout,

    My husband and I received our property tax bill a couple of weeks ago, after adding up all the WCCUSD bond taxes, our total came up to just over $2500. We definitely feel your pain! We pay more to the bond program then to our city.

  2. This week I got my property tax bill in the mail. Not a pretty picture.
    My house is assessed at $ 300000 which translates into $ 3000 basic ( 1%) tax. However thanks to all the school bond voters an additional $ 1800 is added. So I am paying 160% of ” normal.

    Who is looking out for people like me? These taxes are killing me. It is time for some realistic and tax-sensitive reps on this board.

    • Didn’t the voters approve those bond measures?

      Like you, my property taxes are through the roof. My home is in a less affluent neighborhood and is assessed much lower than yours but being a disable retiree living on a meager fixed pension these taxes hurt. (You can cry for me later.)

      Whether we agree with what’s passed by the electorate or not, the democratic process demands that we live with the end result. As long as we’re stuck with paying this tax, it’s incumbent upon us to ensure that we get the biggest bang for our buck–to be sure that our tax dollars are building the best modern schools that will serve our needs for decades after they’re built.

  3. I think the Status Quo must be pretty desperate to stay in power if they need to attack students that endorsed opposition. It takes the attention away from education – our district is one of the lowest performing district in California. Also we have the FEDS, the Securities and Exchange Commission, investigating the bond program. Facilities are costing many times the average, construction interests involved in the bond program have contributed millions to district campaigns

    Here’s a piece that was in the CCTimes by one of the SFER members:

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