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November 8, 2016 — California General Election
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San Dieguito Union High School DistrictCandidate for Board Member

Photo of Lucile Hooton Lynch

Lucile Hooton Lynch

Education Advocate/Attorney
18,950 votes (15.12%)
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • 21st Century Skills: We need to update our electives and vocational options to ensure that they help all students to improve their postsecondary outcomes.
  • Reduction of dependency on parent fundraising: Our district claims we have had million dollar surpluses and high reserves yet our parents continue to pay for school essentials such as materials, computers, electives and courses. This needs to stop.
  • Reinstatement of class size maximums: We currently have no class size maximum in our teachers contract and too many classes in the 40's. We need to protect our class sizes.



Profession:Attorney, former Small Businesswoman and Parent of a child in the district
Co-Founder, Steps4Kids, LLC (Educational Supports) (2005–2014)
Appellate Attorney, S.P.E.C.T.R.E (Producer Kevin McClory, James Bond Copyright Issues) (2001–2004)
Chief of Staff for Supreme Court Justice Castille, Supreme Court of Pennsylvania (1993–1998)
Trial Attorney, Reed Smith Shaw & McClay (1991–1993)
Prosecutor, Philadelphia District Attorney's Office (1989–1991)


University of Pittsburgh Juris Doctorate (J.D.) (1988)
U.C.L.A. Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), Political Science (1983)

Community Activities

Coach, Miracle League of San Diego (2016–current)
Volunteer Advocate, Educational Supports for Economically Disadvantaged Families and those with Special Needs children (2004–current)
Volunteer, San Dieguito Union High School District - Pool Feasibility Committee (2015–current)
Volunteer, San Dieguito Special Education Forum (2016–current)


As a parent of a child in the district, I am running because over the years we have felt the impact of board decisions and believe it is time for a fresh perspective.  Our board does not have term limits so I hope to have the opportunity to contribute my skills as an attorney, education advocate, and small businesswoman to help guide the district for the next four years.

I have been involved with the educational sector for over 10 years as a volunteer and educational advocate, working with staff and parents to resolve complicated school issues ranging from educational management of medically fragile students, to the design of parallel curriculum to support classrooms and improve outcomes. I have been twice recognized by a regional 14 public school district consortium for “excellence” in supporting students and have also been awarded a Congressional Order of Merit.  Prior to my work as an education advocate, I was a trial and appellate attorney that handled multi-million dollar entertainment copyright issues (e.g. rights to James Bond films), complex international fraud matters and criminal trials.  

I have been a southern Carlsbad resident since 1999 with my husband of 26 years, and twin boys, now in high school.  I co-found a local business that specialized in the design of award winning educational tools distributed internationally to support curriculum and early developmental skills.  Awards have included “Classroom Media of the Year,” “Top Videos for Students,” all-star recognition by the Kids First! Coalition for Quality Children’s Media, Parent’s Choice Foundation Award, and special recognition from the School Library Journal, to name a few.  I have been been featured on the Balancing Act (airing on the Lifetime Channel), NBC San Diego and other media for my work in education.  I was also selected as a writer for on special education issues for half a decade exploring issues such as literacy, postsecondary options, and legislative developments. 

I am dedicated to the public school system and have volunteered to support the local public schools for almost 14 years.  I currently serve on the San Dieguito District pool feasibility committee and the district’s special education forum.  I also served as an interim parent liaison to the athletic foundation at my son’s school and created webpages for the local high school aquatic teams.  I currently coach for the San Diego Miracle League in North County.

Prior to my sons’ entry into the San Dieguito District, I was an active volunteer with the Encinitas Union High School District where I served on the district's Futuring Committee and Tech Committee, and was appointed by the administration to serve as the district’s representative to a regional 14 school district consortium: the North Coastal Consortium for Special Education (NCCSE). I also served on the Executive Board for NCCSE, the PTA Board, Red Ribbon Committee and Reflections Art Committee. 

Other volunteer efforts included being a lead volunteer P.E. instructor for ECC, a volunteer for the school’s Arts Attack program (3 years), classroom parent, Jog-a-Thon fundraiser, and lunch duty volunteer.  I also helped create the district’s Abilities Awareness and Acceptance program and parent information pamphlet for new parents entering the district. 

Before moving to Carlsbad, I served as a trial attorney for the law firm of Reed Smith Shaw & McClay and also served as a prosecutor for the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office where I prosecuted cases involving child abuse and juvenile related crimes.  I also served in the appellate division where I handled criminal appeals involving high profile cases and was appointed to the federally assisted state trials unit that collaborated with the U.S. Attorney’s Office to prosecute narcotic related criminal activity.  I also served as the chief of staff for a supreme court justice, later chief justice, on the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania.  While working in Philadelphia, I volunteered for Philadelphia City Sail, an educational nonprofit that provided science, math, and vocational instruction to socioeconomically disadvantaged high school youth and was ultimately appointed to the board before moving to the Carlsbad area.

We have a strong district supported by committed parents, dedicated students and devoted teachers, but there are some areas overdue for change.  My experience and unique background will help me guide the district to make sure we continue the good work while keeping up with our changing demographics and technological needs to serve the needs of all students. I am committed to collaboratively supporting not only the district’s students, but also the district’s programs, staff and school board. 


Who supports this candidate?

Featured Endorsements

  • North County Leadership Council
  • Seaside Courier

Organizations (2)

  • North County Leadership Council
  • Republican Party of San Diego

Elected Officials (7)

  • Gayle Gillies (Former Board President and Trustee, Rancho Santa Fe School District Board)
  • Carl DeMaio (former San Diego City Council)
  • Kristin Gaspar (Mayor of Encinitas)
  • Maureen "Mo" Muir (School Board, San Dieguito Union High School District)
  • Steven McDowell (School Board, Former President and Trustee, Del Mar Union School District)
  • T.J. Zane (School Board Trustee, Poway Unified School Board)
  • Mark Muir, City Council for the City of Encinitas and Retired Police Chief

Individuals (55)

  • Janine Nakama, Broadcast Producer/Writer
  • Sue Waggener, Retired Attorney
  • Michelle Hooton, Parent
  • Frank DeLattre (President-Vycon)
  • Brian Lynch (Sr. VP, General Counsel and Secretary, Callaway Golf)
  • Lisa Montes (Solana Beach Community Leader)
  • Nancy N. Frank (Teacher, Retired)
  • Julie Law-Cheeseman (San Dieguito CAC Rep for North Coastal Consortium for Special Ed)
  • Stephanie Rubino (Executive Board Member and EUSD CAC Rep., North Coastal Consortium for Special Ed)
  • Joanne Stress (San Dieguito CAC Rep for North Coastal Consortium for Special Ed)
  • Chloe Belle Hooton (Harvard College, Student)
  • Courtney Hooton (Investment Banker, Deutsche Bank)
  • Claude Hooton (President and COO of StatRad)
  • Dr. Veronica Naudin Rejto (Parent of former SDUHSD/SDA student)
  • David Marr, VP and Legal Counsel, Qualcomm (Parent of SDUHSD student)
  • Alicia Cashman (Board Member for LCC's Maverick Athletic Boosters, former PTA Board/VP)
  • Steven and Sheri Spector (Parents of two student, Carmel Valley)
  • Jennifer Thomas (Chief Accounting Officer, Callaway Golf Co.)
  • Craig and Meredith Garner (Attorney/Parent, Rancho Santa Fe)
  • Ron Irick (Sr. Counsel, Panasonic Avionics Corporation and High School Parent)
  • Mark Leposky (Sr. VP, Gobal Operations, Callaway Golf Company)
  • Chip Brewer (CEO, Callaway Golf and High School Parent)
  • Mike Rider, Middle School Parent
  • Scott DeNike (General Counsel, Seirus Innovation)
  • Mason Matthies, Parent
  • Sarah Neill, CDR, MSC, USN (Retired)
  • Laura Makings, SDUHSD Parent and LCC Volunteer
  • Mary Starita, SDUHSD Parent (Carlsbad)
  • Katrina DeLattre, Parent/Homemaker
  • Moira Goddard, Business Manager/SDUHSD Parent Volunteer
  • Steve McCracken, Attorney
  • Douglas Nakama, Former Deputy Fire Chief of San Diego
  • Rob Porter, SDUHSD Parent and Business Owner
  • Libby Frank (Founding Co-Chair of the RSF Women's Fund, former Board Member of the RSF Garden Club
  • Sioux and Dick Colbourne (RSF)
  • Joanne Warren
  • Scott Ross, SDUHSD Parent
  • Carol Ross, SDUHSD Parent (former Board Member LCC Foundation, Grants Committee and Maverick Academic Boosters)
  • Amy Flicker, SDUHSD Parent
  • Sophy Chaffee, SDUHSD Parent
  • Mary Backer, SDUHSD Parent
  • Karin Barrows, SDUHSD Parent (Torrey Pines)
  • Dr. Randy Barrows, SDUHSD Parent (Torrey Pines)
  • Lisa Kushnir-Ansonoff
  • Elizabeth Hooton (Administration and Univ. of Pennsylvania graduate)
  • Ellen Orton Montanari (Solana Beach)
  • Rachel Fink, Parent
  • Helen Davidson Corkran (former counseling secretary at Torrey Pines High School and parent)
  • May Marr, CA Credentialed Teacher
  • Kathy McElhinney (RSF)
  • Fred Port (Former President, Callaway International)
  • Dave Backer (SDUHSD Parent)
  • Melanie Menell Landers (SDUHSD Parent)
  • Gayle Gillies-Mize (Former Board Member, RSF)
  • Melissa Collins-Porter, SDUHSD Parent/Assoc. Faculty, Mira Costa Community College/Producer "Aging Out" Documentary

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 Lucile Hooton Lynch:

Transparency is the key to accountability and success.  To help the public understand the LCFF/LCAP funding plan and outcomes, I would:

  • Have a website dedicated to this funding scheme with links to helpful powerpoints, .pdf and other informational tools in English and other languages;
  • Have a breakdown of the funding, updated monthly, in a table format with specifics so that the public can have access to the spending of the district, the specified purpose of the expenditure, how the use was monitored to ensure it was used for the purpose identified, and the measurement used to determine if it improved student achievement;
  • circulate a newletter to the subgroups for which the supplemental funding was allocated and identify in each newsletter (in the preferred language of the family/ies) the specific program, needs being addressed, performance indicators and measurements used to measure student success, whether the target was met and, if not, what will be done differently.  
  • host bi-monthly budget informational meetings to help the public understand the budget decisions of the board and to provide input in an informal meeting/setting.

Questions from League of Women Voters of North County San Diego (1)

What is the most significant challenge facing the San Dieguito Union High School District, and if you are elected, what steps will you take to address it?
Answer from Lucile Hooton Lynch:

We have many great programs and projects underway that I hope to continue if elected.  However change is needed in the following areas:

1.  Return of class size maximums to prevent our classes from going into the mid 40's like many of our high school classes currently do.  
California already has some of the highest class sizes in the nation.  The Master Contract 2015-18 approved by the incumbents eliminated this provision.  Maximum pupil/teacher ratios are an important provision to protect not only class sizes but also the opportunity for student/teacher engagement.  The CA Teachers position is that "small class sizes are key to improving student learning" and that small class sizes "particularly in grades pre-kindergarten through 12, allows for the optimum development of a student's potential and ensure individual attention to each student."  

Solution: We have a new teachers contract up for negotiation in 2017, and I hope to work with all parties to return this important provision to the contract.

2.  Reduction of dependency on parent funding during times of district surpluses and high reserves.  Our high school foundations and organizations raise thousands of dollars each year to pay for school items because, in the past, there was insufficient district funding to meet all the needs at each school site.  But now,  even though the district has reported surpluses for the last four years, a $4 million surplus this past year, and the "highest ever" reserves (savings), parents are still expected to fundraise thousands of dollars.  Even with this significant surplus of $4 million claimed this past September, the board  approved a district budget that reduced the allocation for supplies and materials by $2.2 million from the prior year, a sum which equals approximately $200K per school.  

Our public high school foundations now have approximately $1 million budgets and our parents raise money annually to pay for  books and materials, tutoring, technology support, classroom computers and software, sheet music, lab equipment and even help to fund classes at the school sites. 

Solution: I would like to put together a district committee of foundation presidents, site council reps, administrators and department heads to identify a list of prioritized funding areas and work collaboratively to identify the district's responsibilities so that when funding is available, the parents are not asked to fund these areas.

3. Improving student outcomes and workability.

Our district has approximately 12,700 students.  Roughly 30% of our students fall into the categories of "socioeconomically disadvantaged," "students with disabilities," "Hispanic or Latino," and "English Learners."    A significant number of our students in these categories have performed below state averages for years.

Solution:  We need to better identify and implement best practices, map out more detailed targets and performance indicators, and frequently monitor our programs to determine if the interventions are working.   


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