The political action arm of the California Charter Schools Association spent heavily to elect charter-friendly candidates, but none of them won a majority. There will be three run-offs.

 

Bennett Kayser, the incumbent who was endorsed by the Network for Public Education, came in a close second to challenger and charter school leader Ref Rodriguez, who was leading by 38% to 35%. There will be a run-off.

 

Incumbent Tamar Galatzan, a strong supporter of charters and ex-superintendent John Deasy, got 39% of the vote, and the remainder was divided among several candidates. Veteran educator Scott Schmerelson (whom I endorsed) came in second with 20% of the vote. Galatzan outspent Schmerelson by 8-1 and will face him in a runoff.

 

Board chairman Dr. Richard Vladovic, also supported by charter advocates, did not receive a majority of the votes and will face a runoff against teacher Lydia Gutierrez. He led by 43% to 38%.

 

In all three critical races, the pro-charter candidate won a plurality, but the majority of those who turned out to vote did not vote for the pro-charter candidate.