Four members of the Manteca Unified Board of Trustees were sworn in to office Tuesday night.
In a departure from the usual installation procedures in previous years, there were five installing officials who presided over three separate oaths of office.
It was newly elected Trustee Alexander Bronson who upped the number. Three generations of his family did the honors for him – his grandmother, Maria Vasquez, who read the first part of his oath; his mother Dolores Vasquez-Bronson who did the second half; and his father, Brian.
Bronson, who took over Area 6 previously represented by former board president Don Scholl, introduced his grandmother and mother as both having a combined 50 years of experience in education. Vasquez is a retired elementary school teacher in Stockton. The new trustee’s mother is an administrator at Lincoln Unified School District in Stockton. His father, who did not participate in the oath-taking but was invited by his wife and mother-in-law to join them at the podium, is a businessman.
“We’re a small but strong family,” Bronson said of his three-generation family, several members of which also attended the oath taking.
Ashley Drain, the other newly elected board trustee who replaced Manuel Medeiros as the representative of Area 2, was installed by her former seventh-grade math teacher, John Payne, who drove to Manteca that evening from San Francisco where he now lives to administer the swearing-in of his former student at Albert Einstein Middle School in Sacramento.
Several members of Drain’s family were also present to witness her oath-taking. They included her husband, her mother who also drove to Manteca from the Bay Area to attend the ceremony, her stepmother and her father whom she described as “that guy (who) is responsible for me going to East Union.” She also introduced a friend who travelled from Atlanta to see her officially seated on the board.
Payne praised his former student saying, “She had the ‘it’ factor.” He added that he took more pleasure in her being his student than she having the pleasure of having him as her teacher.
“I’m honored that she has blessed me” by choosing him to be her installing officer, Payne said.
The two veteran trustees – Evelyn Moore with 24 years on the board under her belt, and Nancy Teicheira with 16 years – were installed by San Joaquin County Superior Court Judge and law school faculty member Tony Agbayani.
Moore and Teicheira were automatically appointed to another four years on the board after their re-election bids in the November elections did not produce any challengers.
Before administering to them the oath of office, Agbayani reminded the board members that trustees are like judges. Whatever decisions they make, he said, make life-long impacts on the students they serve.
“The children’s future is in your hands,” he said.