General Election 2002
By Daniel L. Munoz
Not too long ago, San Ysidro resident Toby Mange had been a regular fixture on the San Ysidro School Board of Trustees meetings. He had twice run for office and twice had been elected to the Board of Trustees. He served eight years from 1983 to 1990. During this period of time he split his time between his families, work with the United States Navy, North Island, in the Naval Aviation Department, and somehow found the time to deal with the many problems that plagued the San Ysidro Elementary-Middle School District.
Now 12 years later, Toby Mange trudged up the stairway to the offices of La Prensa San Diego, one more time, to announce that he was going to run for office for the Board of Trustees. “ The District is in chaos”, he told La Prensa San Diego. “ I have been approached by citizens of San Ysidro who are concerned at the instability of the administration and the chaos that it is causing in the education of our children. Students, teachers, and parents have requested I come back and work to bring back some stability to the school district. Some of the Board members have informed me that the meetings are chaotic. Important decisions are not being made and Board members are not communicating with each other. Attendees have made statements to me, that it looks like decisions have been made prior to the meeting and then are approved without public discussion,” stated Mange
La Prensa wondered why Toby Mange would want to involve himself once again with the District. “ I have my own child, attending San Ysidro schools. But most importantly, I also have 9 of my grandchildren attending the local schools. I am not happy with the education they are getting. The State has mandated that the students be qualified for high school level studies when they graduate from our middle school. They must achieve certain standards! To date they are still not being prepared nor are they qualified for a high school education! Their chances of graduating from high school are very uncertain.” Mange said.
The District has been hampered by the lack of stability in the Office of the School Superintendent. Locals familiar with the situation inform La Prensa that it is a ‘revolving door’ situation. Candidate Mange states, “The latest fiasco was the hiring of Mr. Torres after Superintendent Grace Kojima retired. Torres didn’t even have a Superintendents credential. The school was in turmoil during the time he was here. Eventually he was fired. While the new search is underway for a new superintendent, former Supt. Kojima was brought back out of retirement to serve as superintendent.”
With the Board elections three months away with a potential change in the make up and membership of the Board, there may be a desire of the current Board to hold off in the search for a new superintendent. The San Ysidro School District, that has an enrollment of 4,887 students, is growing rapidly. Much of the growth is being attributed to the development in the Otay Mesa area.
There are 3 open seats for election for a full term. The voters will be asked to select from the following candidates:
Manuel Hernandez (parent)
Yolanda M. Hernandez (incumbent)
Sandy Lopez (business woman)
Toby Mange (parent/labor representative)
Doug Perry (retired businessman)
Jean Romero (incumbent)
Juan M. Trujillo (incumbent)
(Candidate Toby Mange may be reached by E-mail at <firstname.lastname@example.org> or at 1-619-271-7050