After more than a week of being locked in a tight battle for the second open Palo Alto school board seat, Catherine Crystal Foster has conceded to Terry Godfrey.
"At this point, the county has recorded all remaining vote-by-mail ballots, and there are only a few thousand uncounted provisional ballots remaining county-wide. The uncounted ballots are unlikely to change the outcome, so I offer my sincere congratulations to Ken and Terry as the new members of our school board," Foster wrote in an email message to her supporters. "Both Terry and Ken will be staunch advocates for our students, and I wish them both the best."
Foster, a parent of two whose 20-year career has focused on education and social justice, has trailed Godfrey since Election Day, with the spread between the two as little as 12 votes at one point last week. The results trickled in through daily updates as the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters processed several thousand provisional ballots (those that require extra attention, including a verification of the voter's status) each day.
According to the latest count, Godfrey is currently ahead by 199 votes 9,638 to Foster's 9,439.
Ken Dauber secured his seat by a comfortable margin last week. The latest update shows him with 29.47 percent of the vote.
"I am grateful for the opportunity to have spent these past six months discussing the future of Palo Alto's schools with so many in our community," Foster wrote in her message. "I continue to be energized by you, by the opportunities before us, and by the ambition of our new superintendent. To those of you who walked, called, endorsed, created, gave, wrote, informed, and inspired over this campaign -- many, many thanks. We created a network of positive thinkers who care about education that will continue long after the final ballots are counted."
"I'm looking forward to getting to the job," Godfrey told the Weekly Thursday. "I certainly feel like I have a good feeling for what people are interested in and how our community feels. We have a lot of momentum on really getting us to be student-centered, innovative place where our kids are socially emotional healthy and want to learn."
Dauber and Godfrey will join Camille Townsend, Heidi Emberling and Melissa Baten Caswell at the dais, serving four-year terms starting Dec. 9.
The registrar's office also plans to count and verify this week the roughly 14,000 provisional ballots that were cast countywide. Official results are scheduled to be certified on Dec. 2.