Three Pleasanton school board members to seek re-election to 4-year terms

Hintzke, Arkin file for re-election; Chris Grant expected to follow shortly

Pleasanton school board members Valerie Arkin and Jamie Yee Hintzke have filed for re-election to the board in the Nov. 6 election and a third member, Chris Grant, is expected to follow.

Grant, whose four-year term also expires this year, said Tuesday that he plans to file for re-election. No other candidates have indicated an interest in seeking a seat on the board. There are no term limits for school board members.

Valerie Arkin's re-election bid was reported by Dave Macdonald, Alameda County Registrar of Voters, although there is no candidate statement on file nor has Arkin issued a re-election statement.

The school board faces continued tough budget decisions in the coming year as state grapples with deficits that have severely affected California school districts, including Pleasanton's.

In her announcement seeking re-election, Hintzke, who served as clerk of the school board from 2010-2011, said that she has pushed for greater district transparency, tight financial control and accountability, greater public involvement in district decisions, advocating for reading intervention programs and improved methods to better serve the needs of all students.

In addition, during her current term, she had a major role in hiring a new school superintendent.

Hintzke said her priorities are "to ensure that students reach their full potential, strengthen communication and school/parent partnerships, continue to ask the hard questions about fiscal accountability and push for answers and transparency, and to ensure that PUSD employees work in a supportive and collaborative environment."

"The parents and students of Pleasanton deserve trustees who have a deep understanding of our schools and the challenges facing them," she added. "I believe this is my greatest strength as a candidate."

"At a time when our schools are threatened by the state's fiscal crisis, the community needs a trustee with experience and a thorough understanding of public education," she said. "I have served for the past four years with a strong record of involvement and will continue to ensure the best possible education for our students. Building public trust by continuing to advocate for transparency and improved communication is a priority."

A Pleasanton resident for nearly 40 years, Hintzke attended Pleasanton public schools and has two children currently enrolled in the district. From 2009-2012 she served on the Alameda County School Boards Association as the vice president of education.

For the last two years, she also has been a trustee on the Tri Valley ROP Board and is currently that board's president. In 2012, she completed the Masters in Governance training program developed by the California School Boards Association.

Prior to taking office in 2008, she was active in the Parent Teachers Association at Alisal Elementary and Harvest Park Middle schools as well as the Pleasanton PTA Council. Hintzke served on several PUSD Committees including the Excellence Committee, the Budget Advisory Committee, and the Lifetime Planning Committee. Since 2007, she has served on the California State PTA Board of Managers as the Vice Chair of the Health Commission and the Resolutions Committee Chair.

Hintzke is employed by Alameda County as a Community Relations Coordinator, working on a youth center project due to open January 2013.

"It has been an honor to serve the community over the last four years and I look forward to the privilege of serving again to continue to do what the public has elected me to do: focus on our student's learning, policies and keeping an eagle eye on the budget," Hintzke said.

More information on Hintzke's candidacy can be found at

Pleasanton Weekly staff.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Troll
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Jul 23, 2012 at 1:34 pm

Where's Arnold?

 +   Like this comment
Posted by local
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 23, 2012 at 2:07 pm

Good news. Now we need one more person who will actually ask questions like these two and that will give us a majority of the board that will represent the residents, not the staff.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Sandy
a resident of Mohr Park
on Jul 24, 2012 at 11:20 am

It's free to put your name on the ballot. To mount a campaign costs time and money. $1700 just to have a candidate statement published in the voter information guide. Time to knock on doors, participate in the LWV/PTAC debate/forum, meet with people who want to know more about your reviews.

I encourage anyone with a strong independent voice to consider running, and I do understand why people with strong opinions might not take on a full campaign.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by anon
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 24, 2012 at 9:21 pm

Sandy, do you plan to run again? I would vote for you.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Mark
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Jul 25, 2012 at 8:15 am

Chris Grant is a solid School Board member. He thinks for himself and is committed to making our schools better and more accountable. I hope he stays for awhile.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by not really
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 25, 2012 at 9:07 am

Chris Grant has never replied to any message I have send to him. I have never seem him vote independently or bring up parent concerns at meetings.

Valerie Arkin and Jamie Hintzke always make time to reply / talk about issues.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by local
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 25, 2012 at 9:24 am

"Mark", you must be an administrator for the district. I don't think I have ever seen Chris ask an question or vote against anything the staff has recommended. He is a nice guy but all he does is say how great staff is in producing the report for the meeting (i.e., he is an administrator cheerleader). A bunch of "yes" people are not going to make our district strong.

Sandy is right on the cost to put a candidate statement in. I think the price might have even gone up this year. It is all due to the languages you MUST translate your candidate statement to. As the candidate, if you want a published statement, it has to be in EVERY language offered on the ballot for the county, whether you care about that language or not. This has been a total rip off. First, I thought you had to speak English to become a citizen and you have to be a citizen to vote. But lets say you don't mind the tax dollars going into producing ballots in all these languages, if a candidate does not want to pay for a translation of their own message into any of the other languages, why do we have to force them? Some candidates will want to pay for the translations because they think they will get enough votes from that voting group. Let them pay for the translation. For those who do not want to spend that extraordinary amount to translate, they should be able to opt-out. After all, not having their statement in the other language(s) only affects themselves. The candidate statement is not a legal document. It is a personal note from the candidate. Let them decide what languages they want.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Michele
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Jul 25, 2012 at 10:43 am

Vote for Arkin and Hintzke! If you are an avid watcher of the school board meetings, you know that these two have the best interests of our community, students, and parents when they vote.
Their words and actions match, which is refreshing to see in politics these days! They study the financial reports, proposals, and board packets and ask the types of questions all of us parents want to know. They listen to their consituents and represent us at the board meetings and actually bring up OUR concerns. Watch the last board meeting at which the new staggered reading program announcement tried to get swept under the carpet and Arkin insisted that the school district have a meeting to address parent concerns (since the announcement went out the last day of school)! These two trustees are doing the job the way it is suppose to be done and providing a source of checks and balances (and oversight) for the administration. I hope they both garner an avalanche of votes!

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Posted by Beth
a resident of Mohr Park
on Jul 25, 2012 at 10:43 am

Valerie and Jamie have done a great job in difficult positions. They have been the lone voices on the School Board for reason and common sense. Chris has shown himself as aligning with the "status quo". Nice guy, but his votes with the "other 2", whoever they were, have left a bad taste in my mouth. It was his vote that made Larson the President this year, instead of giving Jamie Hintzke her turn. If he gets back in, I wonder what the "board's" next excuse will be to not let Jamie have her turn...probably that it is Bowser's turn.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Lisa
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Jul 25, 2012 at 12:35 pm

Chris Grant is a nice guy but a yes man and poor trustee. He would do the community a favor to give up his seat, if there is a vacant seat more will step up.
Chris has a finance background but has not been of value as a board finance watchdog.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by lessismore
a resident of Mohr Park
on Jul 25, 2012 at 12:50 pm

I wish someone with vision would run for the board.
Arkin and Hintzke are nice people but lack the ability to have a long term vision and to think out side the box. This is a flat board with no energy we need someone who can lead.

Larson is no the solution she is the same problem out of touch with a world passing them by. We need people on the board looking at what's next and what impact our kids 5 and 10 year's down the road.

The focus of the board should be building programs that make great 30 year old's that have and impacted on the world.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 25, 2012 at 12:53 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Are their suggestions for people we could encourage to step forward? Don't have to post names here, but maybe their is someone who would take this on if they knew they had support.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Nurse Shark
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 25, 2012 at 1:04 pm

I'm 100% behind "Stacey" stepping forward!

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Jul 25, 2012 at 1:06 pm

Stacey is a registered user.

And why would that be, Nurse Shark?

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Nurse Shark
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 25, 2012 at 1:35 pm

Because I'm supportive and nice?

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Diana
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Jul 25, 2012 at 2:32 pm

I would love to see Stacey run for SB. She is intelligent, an independent thinker and does her homework. Go for it Stacey!

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Jul 25, 2012 at 2:50 pm

Stacey is a registered user.

Thanks, Diana. I'm not ready for that role.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Staceleen Who Must Not Be Named
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 25, 2012 at 3:11 pm

Yes, I won't be ready to make my move until Kathleen has recovered the Sorcerer's Stone. Then I can move out from under her turban and have my own physical body! Naturally, running for office would come next.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Sherman
a resident of Carriage Gardens
on Jul 26, 2012 at 7:09 am

I think steven from stoneridge would make an excellent candidate. He's sincere, intellagint,and angers well.

(My name really isnt Sherman, its steven. But just as others have, I figured I needed a secondary poser's name in order to ellicit a nomination.)

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