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November 8, 2016 — California General Election
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Santa Paula Unified School DistrictCandidate for Board Member

Photo of Kelsey Stewart

Kelsey Stewart

Santa Paula Unified School District Board Trustee
3,564 votes (11.93%)Winning
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • My first priority is to ensure our district curriculum ignites potential in our student body and is consistent throughout the schools (K-12).
  • My second priority is accessible and informational communication between the District and public.
  • My third priority is to ensure the recently passed bond money is spent modernizing our campuses and improving sites for student safety.



Profession:Community Volunteer
Santa Paula Unified School District Board Trustee, Santa Paula Unified School District — Elected position (2012–current)
Santa Paula Elementarty School District Board Trustee, Santa Paula Elementary School District — Appointed position (2012–2013)
Graphic Designer, Alpha Graphics and Fausset Printing, Ventura California (1997–2003)
Store Manager and Human Resources, Blockbuster Music (1995–1996)
Store Manager, Sam Goody/Musicland (1992–1995)


Technology Development Center Certification, Graphic Design (1997)
Missouri State University no degree, Business, Econommics (1989)

Community Activities

Parent Volunteer, Santa Paula Schools (2007–current)
Den Leader and Committee positions, Boy Scouts of America (2006–2015)
Representative to SPESD Superintendent Advisory Committee, Santa Paula Elementary School District (2011–2012)
Information Officer, Santa Paula Little League (2007–2012)



Kelsey Stewart is a community volunteer, children’s book author and former graphic designer. She and her husband Bruce moved from St. Louis, Missouri to Ventura in 1995, and in 2000 settled in Santa Paula to raise their family. Kelsey has two sons, Bodde who attends SPHS and Chase who attends Isbell Middle School.


Kelsey has volunteered for Thelma Bedell Elementary and Isbell Middle School and served as the Information Officer on the Board of Directors for the Santa Paula Little League from 2007-2012. Partnered with Bruce over eight years, this dynamic duo served as den leaders for Boy Scouts of America taking on many roles in various committees within the organization.


Kelsey’s passion is the youth of this community. Many students and parents throughout the district know her as Book Fair Betty, the alter ego she created in 2009 when she volunteered for the book fair chairman duties at Bedell. Betty has helped many children discover the joy of reading using creativity in extracurricular activities associated with the book fairs. She's worked several fairs with Isbell ASB students nurturing their imaginations, one year producing the "Under the Sea" ceiling kraken which thrilled all who walked through the transformed classroom.


Kelsey served simultaneous seats on the SP Elementary School Board and the newly formed SPUSD board until unification of the districts in July of 2013. Since that time, she has served the SPUSD as a board trustee working with fellow trustees overseeing the completion of district unification, negotiating the contracts of both classified and certificated staff within a year of unification, successfully restructured administrative staff, set direction to pass a $39 million bond for K-8 classroom modernization, and set goals for the facilities master plan which includes 21st Century curriculum for Santa Paula students including the addition of a new school at The Harvest (East Area One). Kelsey has completed the Masters in Governance program through California School Board Association and has served as the Clerk and Vice President of the SPUSD Board.


Who supports this candidate?

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Questions & Answers

Questions from League of Women Voters of California Education Fund (1)

A recent law made major changes in the way that the state allocates funding to schools.  What will you do to ensure that the public understands your local control formula for school spending and your plan to measure outcomes?
Answer from Kelsey Stewart:

Our District has chosen a community committee for the Local Control Funding Formula to help prioritize the needs of the district. Our Board receives updates of their meetings and we then incorporate the needs of the community with the needs of the students to formulate and implement much needed programs, curriculum and staff support to meet those goals. SPUSD has been working with the Santa Paula community for two years in this manner, and I would like to see that collaboration continue in the future.


Political Beliefs

Political Philosophy

My political philosophy is quite simple: keep students first in every decision made by the board. Our student body is the reason we are here and they are the future of not only our community, but our country as well.


Position Papers

My intentions and top priorities for SPUSD if elected to represent the Board


As a current Board Trustee, the SPUSD has many goals set for the future of our community. If elected to a second term as a SPUSD Board Trustee, I have several key issues that I would like to see through.


If elected to the SPUSD Board I will make the needs of the students in our community my first priority in every decision presented to the Board. It is my intention to be their voice, to do what is best to ensure they are prepared for success.




The current Board has set forth a vision based on years of planning that I would like to see through. Our students deserve the modernization of classrooms and technological advances found in surrounding districts, and SPUSD now has the funding to improve our current conditions.




Proficiency in English is of utmost importance with Common Core curriculum as our students are required to read and comprehend more in their studies and exams, especially in mathematics. I would like to find innovative ways to set a goal that every student is English proficient before entering Middle School.




Student safety and school environment is always a priority, including exploring and installing cooling solutions for all school sites.




Developing new pathways (currently called academies) at the High School beyond AG and Human Services is key for the future of our district’s success. Expanding our curriculum to offer a variety of choices in the fields of science, sports medicine, renewable energies, automotive/aviation and vocational training will keep our student body interested in education and decrease dropout rates.




Child nutrition has been a focus for many parents and students. With additional funding SPUSD has an opportunity to upgrade the cafeterias in our district. Our nutritional program has excelled in the last year with scratch cooking and expanded food choices. To compliment those advancements, I would like to work with the staff to improve the environment our students visit on a daily basis, creating inviting gathering spaces for our students to relax and enjoy.


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