Challengers Beat Incumbents In Elk Grove Unified School Board race

Check back for updated election night results.

With all 232 precincts reporting, it appears challengers in the Elk Grove Unified School Board race beat out the incumbents.

Steve Ly has won nearly 67 percent of the votes for the Area 6 seat over incumbent Jake Rambo’s 33 percent. In the Area 3 race Carmine Forcina drew 41 percent of the votes, besting incumbet Al Rowlett's 31 percent.

"I’m very humbled and honored that voters have spoken to me loud and clear," Ly said earlier in the evening. "That being the case, I think it’s critical for us in this next step to figure out how all the stakeholders will work together.”

Perez is leading the battle for Area 1 with nearly 46 percent of the votes, trailed by Susan Parvis’ 31 percent and James Letoa who has won 23 percent.

"I'm still watching it. I'm still in shock," Perez said earlier in the evening. "I won't believe it until the final results of the election. I've seen elections flip-flop overnight."

Perez said he was honored that the community considered his candidacy and took the time to research the candidates in the race.

After his stop in Elk Grove, Perez was planning to head downtown to meet with Proposition 30 supporters.

"Prop. 30 – that's more important than my race," he said.

Rambo also expressed concern that Propsition 30 continues to trail.

In Area 7, Theresa Beals came in third with 27 percent of the votes.

"So far I am really, really pleased," Forcina said. "It's going to be a new day for the kids and the staff and the community."

Forcina and Ly attributed their leads in part to the coalition they formed with Perez.

"Steve and I in particular utilized the resources of our volunteers to maximize our efforts," Forcina said. "We were able to reach more homes than either could have reached on our own."

They estimated 150 volunteers, many of whom were students, gathered at an election-night party at Ly's home.

"The voters just wanted to connect with the candidates," Ly said. "I must have knocked on over 2,000 homes myself."

Earlier in the evening, Rowlett said he would continue to watch the numbers.

“I’m a little disappointed, but the people’s voice is being heard,” Rowlett said. “I’m thrilled we live in a democracy and I’m always going to be responsive to the voice of the voters."

Original story --

Area 1: James Letoa, Susan Parvis and Tony Perez are vying for retiring Bill Lugg’s seat representing Florin and areas of south Sacramento to the east of Highway 99.

Letoa, 26, is a native of American Samoa and decided to run for the board after becoming frustrated with the way the district’s English-language learners have been misrepresented. He participated in protests over teacher layoffs and says he will carefully go over the district’s budget.

Parvis, a parent at Florin High School who has been volunteering in Elk Grove schools for 15 years, is endorsed by Lugg to be his replacement on the board. She serves on the district’s finance committee and says her experience as a volunteer and a parent make her uniquely qualified for the job.

Perez plans to shake things up if elected to the board, bringing ideas such as more ethnic studies, high school football games separated by height and weight, more vocational and technology-oriented classes as well as more diversity on the board and in administration.

Area 3: Incumbent Chet Madison currently represents the area west of Highway 99 from Meadowview Road to Sheldon Road. He is running for reelection unopposed.

Area 6: Steve Ly is challenging incumbent Jake Rambo to represent Franklin and the areas west of Highway 99 and Elk Grove Boulevard.

Ly, who works for the Sacramento County Office of Education, wants to improve communication between district administration and labor unions by establishing informal meetings with unions and constituents.

Ly has criticized the district for giving top administrators regularly scheduled raises. He has also been critical of recent appointments to the school board – including Rambo’s in March - saying the district should have held special elections instead.

Rambo, a state administrative law judge, was appointed to the board to replace Pamela Irey. In addition to maintaining good relationships with labor unions, Rambo wants to mandate funding for technology.

Since joining the board, Rambo has worked on anti-bullying efforts and helped ensure employees in the military won’t lose wages if they’re called to duty.

Area 7: Incumbent Al Rowlett is being challenged by Theresa Beals and Carmine Forcina for his seat representing Vineyard, Rancho Murieta and part of Rancho Cordova.

Beals, who formed a nonprofit group with other parents for Sunrise Elementary School, wants to keep the district’s focus on is students and their education while making its policies on administrator pay and raises more transparent.

A retiree from the Santa Clara County Office of Education, Forcina now works as a substitute teacher in the Elk Grove district and volunteers in local classrooms. If elected, he wants to generate more revenue for the district through business partnerships, foundations and grants.

Forcina is a proponent of “zero-based budgeting” in which officials have to justify funding programs every year.

Rowlett, who was appointed to the board in 2009 and ran unopposed in the following election, wants to close the achievement gap in public education and build bridges between the district and its staff. Rowlett also wants to improve technology in the classrooms.

"It's naive and not forward-thinking for me to not embrace that," Rowlett said.

But the biggest challenge of all to the district is funding; Rowlett said despite his own personal beliefs, he hopes Proposition 30 passes this November.

"I don't embrace more taxation," he said. "I have to set aside my own personal beliefs and feelings because I'm a trustee, and I have a responsibility to ensure the best possible education for our kids."

Candidates faced off at an election forum in September sponsored by ElkGroveNews.net, Elk Grove Patch and The Sacramento Bee. The full video from that event can be viewed here.

Check back for updated election results.


232 of 232 precincts reported Elk Grove School Board Area 1 Votes % James Letoa 11,760 22.69 Susan Parvis 16,234 31.32 Tony Perez 23,688 45.70


232 of 232 precincts reported Elk Grove School Board Area 6 Votes % Jake Rambo 17,316 33.07 Steve Ly 34,905 66.65


232 of 232 precincts reported Elk Grove School Board Area 7 Votes % Carmine Forcina 20,704 41.03 Al Rowlett 15,717 31.14 Theresa Beals 13,891 27.53


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FREETHINKER November 07, 2012 at 05:02 PM
I hope that this "coalition" does not come to the board with an agenda that ultimately becomes destructive. The board has been making significant changes in their thinking and I hope these individuals enhance it, not disrupt in with internal politics.
concerned for kids November 13, 2012 at 04:56 PM
How sad that area 7 changed hands. Carmine Forcina was banned from being a substitute teacher because of his mistreament of students!!!
Cody Kitaura November 13, 2012 at 05:07 PM
Can you substantiate that claim, "concerned"?
concerned for kids November 13, 2012 at 07:19 PM
Yes I can. There are two occasions in which Mr Forcina was a substitute teacher at Arnold Adreani was asked to leave by the school's principal because of his callous behavior towards students. The latest , and final time he was allowed to substitute was February of this year. At tha time several teachers an parent volunteers could hear Mr. Forcina yelling abusively at a third grade class. The parent then walked over to the office and had the principal come listen to what was happening. I can get you in touch with other parents and teachers that witnessed these events.
M.Legison November 13, 2012 at 07:57 PM
If anyone thinks these three people acted on their own, then you're very naive as to the Democratic campaign machine. All I will say is I'm eternally grateful that our boys are out of the EGUSD system, because you will soon see a board led district agenda we could never have imagined a few years ago.


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