Also serving the communities of De Luz, Rainbow, Camp Pendleton, Pala and Pauma

Feb. 8 is deadline for applicants for second opening on FUHSD board

Rick Monroe

Special to the Village News

The most prominent item on the Fallbrook Union High School District website’s main page is the notice of two vacancies on the five-member board of trustees.

No one ran for the position in Area 2 in the November election and the district continues to look for candidates to be considered for appointment. The area covers most of the southern part of Camp Pendleton and no one has applied for the post. Superintendent Ilsa Garza-Gonzalez said the district is awaiting word from the state on a waiver so it can continue to seek candidates.

In Area 1, Courtney Hilborn won the election and was sworn in during the Dec. 12 organizational meeting. Four days later, on Dec. 16, she sent a letter to Eddie Jones, board president, saying she was resigning immediately. Then on Jan. 3, she made it official by notifying Paul Gothold, superintendent of the San Diego County Office of Education.

The Village News attempted to reach Hilborn by phone and email to discover why she resigned, but there was no response. The other candidate in that election, Jim Dooley, chose not to respond to the question of if he would apply for the position.

At the Jan. 24 meeting of the school board, the three remaining board members voted unanimously to open the period of Jan. 25 to Feb. 8 for applicants in Area 1, which covers the northern part of Camp Pendleton, De Luz, and most of the northern region to I-15. A link to a map of the district is available on the district web page, as well as application forms.

Either vacancy can be filled by appointment. The board is required to provide notice of the vacancy, solicit applications from eligible individuals, interview applicants, and make an appointment. Garza-Gonzalez said a special election would be a costly alternative. Appointments to either Area 1 or Area 2 would serve until the next regular election in 2024 when voters would determine who serves the remaining two years of the term.

At its Jan. 24 meeting, the board approved creation of a sub-committee consisting of less than a quorum of the board to review applications for eligibility and announce the names of the eligible candidates. The board selected trustees Oscar Caralampio and Paul Christensen.

The superintendent noted that confirming eligibility does not mean that the sub-committee will vet the qualifications of candidates. Reviewing qualifications will be reserved for the full board as part of its deliberations.

To serve on the board via appointment, a person must meet the eligibility requirements specified in the education code of being 18 years of age or older, a citizen of the state, a resident of the district and Trustee Area 1, a registered voter, and not otherwise disqualified by the Constitution or laws of the state from holding a civil office.

In Area 2, Jones and Caralampio were previously selected for the sub-committee to review applicants for eligibility.


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