Book Fair Betty Runs Again! Santa Paula Unified School District Board of Trustees — Kelsey Stewart

Santa Paula Unified School District Board of Trustees, Kelsey Stewart, Incumbent

The investment in the youth of our community is a passion of mine, which is why I ran for office in 2012. I would like to continue the work that the Unified Board has planned over the last three and a half years. With the new K-8 bond passage, I would like to ensure that the vision and direction set by the current board are seen through in the future. It is an exciting time for our District with funding possible for modernizing our schools, taking our student curriculum to new heights and the building of the new school at The Harvest.

I am a community volunteer, children’s book author and former graphic designer. My husband and I moved from St. Louis, Missouri to Ventura in 1995, and in 2000 settled in Santa Paula to raise our family. We have two sons, Bodde who attends SPHS and Chase who attends Isbell Middle School.

I have 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 my husband over eight years, we served as den leaders for Boy Scouts of America taking on many roles in various committees within the organization.

My passion is the youth of this community. Many students and parents throughout the district know me as Book Fair Betty, the alter ego I created in 2009 when I 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. I 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.

I 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, I have 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 and district job descriptions that upgraded salaries to be competitive in Ventura County, set direction to pass a $39 million bond for K-8 classroom modernization, and set goals for the facilities master plan with 21st Century classrooms and curriculum for Santa Paula students including the addition of a new school at The Harvest (East Area One). I completed the Masters in Governance program through California School Board Association and have served as the Clerk and Vice President of the SPUSD Board.

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 following are my intentions and top priorities are as follows:

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.

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

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.

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.

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.


Kelsey Stewart

Kelsey Stewart

Graduated 1988 from Mehlville High School, St. Louis MO

University of Missouri 1988-1989, Business/Fine Arts

Meramec Community College, St. Louis MO, 1989

Technology Development Center – Certification in Graphic Design 1996-1997


Management, Sam Goody, Missouri and California 1992-1995

Management and Human Resources, Blockbuster Music 1995-1996

Graphic Designer, Alpha Graphics and Fausset Printing, 1997-2003

Community History

Bedell PFC Volunteer, 2007-2014

Parents for Isbell, 2011-2015

Isbell Parent Representative to SPESD Superintendent Advisory Committee,


Boy Scouts of America, 2006- 2015

Information Officer for Santa Paula Little League, 2007-2012

2012 Santa Paula Little League Volunteer of the Year

Santa Paula Elementary School Board Trustee, December 2012- June 2013

Santa Paula Unified School District Board Trustee, December 2012-Present

SPUSD Representative to Ventura County School Board Association, December 2013 – December 2014

SPUSD Board Clerk, December 2014-December 2015

SPUSD Board Vice President, December 2015-Present


Kelsey can be found on Facebook:


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