El Monte Union High School District, like many other school districts and cities in the state, is in the process of changing how members of the Board of Trustees are elected to office. As the process for creating trustee areas moves forward, the District would like to share a list of Frequently Asked Questions regarding the transition to By-Trustee Area elections.
Why is El Monte Union High School District transitioning to a By-Trustee Area Election System?
The District initiated the process in order to comply with the California Voting Rights Act (“CVRA”). The Board of Trustees adopted a resolution expressing intent and establishing criteria for developing trustee areas including (but not limited to) equal population, communities of interest, compactness, contiguity of districts, visible boundaries, and respect for voters’ wishes and continuity in office.
What is the California Voting Rights Act (CVRA)?
The California Voting Rights Act (CVRA), prohibits the use of any election method “that impairs the ability of a protected class to elect candidates of its choice or its ability to influence the outcome of an election.”
What is the difference between an At-Large and a By-Trustee Area Election Method?
An at-large election method is where all voters can vote for all candidates for election in the entire District. A by-trustee area election method would require voters to vote for a single candidate that resides within an election district (trustee area), comprised of one-fifth of the entire district.
How many trustee areas will be established?
Five separate By-Trustee voting areas will be established within the district boundary map.
How will EMUHSD determine the trustee area map?
The District has enlisted a demographer and a public involvement team to lead the process. The demographer will develop several map options that best align with the criteria established and adopted by the Board of Trustees. Public hearings will be conducted prior to the creation of map options and community meetings will be held for the purpose of discussion and to receive input on the draft maps. Following comments from the community, the Board of Trustees will begin to narrow draft map options and prepare to select a final map for adoption. The approved map will be presented to the Los Angeles County Committee on School District Organization for approval at a later date.
When will this change go into effect?
Beginning in November 2022, residents will vote for a single Board of Trustees candidate residing in their newly drawn trustee area. Elections for 3 trustee areas will be held in 2022 and the remaining 2 areas will be held in November of 2024. The specific sequence on which a Trustee will be elected from each of the new trustee areas (i.e., either in November 2022 or November 2024) will be determined by the final map selected.
Will this impact where my student goes to school?
No, the El Monte Union High School District’s transition from At-Large to By-Trustee Area voting will not have an impact on school attendance zones.
How can EMUHSD residents assist with forming trustee areas?
The EMUHSD Board of Education has scheduled a series of public participation opportunities including community open houses and public hearings to receive feedback on the proposed trustee areas and sequence of election. Community residents are invited to attend a meeting or leave input by visiting the District’s dedicated webpage: EMUHSD District Formation Process.