The Oklahoma City School Board races have been decided.
With all precincts reporting, the winners are Phil Horning for District 3 and Steve Shafer for District 4.
Here are the final results, according to the Oklahoma County Election Board.
Phil Horning: 2,573 (58%)
Tom Beall: 1,881 (42%)
Steve Shafer: 3,419 (60%)
Joe Clytus: 2,325 (40%)
Wendy K. Kleinman
The races for the Oklahoma City School Board aren’t over, but the candidates who are ahead say they are confident they will hold onto their leads.
At 8:30 p.m., Oklahoma City School Board candidate Phil Horning still led Tom Beall in the race for District 3, with 55 percent of the vote, according to the county election board.
That’s with three-quarters of the precincts reporting.
Horning, who was tracking election results at a watch party at his home, said he wasn’t worried about his lead slipping.
“We think we won,” he said. “We think we have the numbers.”
Beall didn’t answer a phone call seeking comment.
In the other race, the buffer District 4 candidate Steve Shafer holds over incumbent Joe Clytus continued to grow.
At 8:30, Shafer led with 57 percent of the vote, with about the same percentage of precincts reporting, according to the county election board.
Shafer, too, seemed confident he would win in the end.
“I’d be shocked if (my lead) deteriorates too far at this point,” he said.
Clytus, in fact, said he was looking for Shafer’s number so he could call and congratulate him.
“I’m going to concede,” Clytus said.
Wendy K. Kleinman
The distance between candidates for one Oklahoma City School Board seat has grown, while the gap between two candidates for another seat on the board has narrowed.
At 7:15 p.m., Steve Shafer led incumbent Joe Clytus by a margin of 51 to 49 percent for District 4.
But by 8 p.m., an hour after polls closed, voters had pushed Shafer to a lead of 55 percent over Clytus.
About one-third of the precincts in their district are reporting.
In the race for District 3, Phil Horning is still ahead of Tom Beall, but by a smaller margin. Horning’s previous lead of 63 percent shrunk to 54 percent.
Beall went from having 37 percent of the votes earlier in the evening up to 46 percent of the votes now.
Just more than half of the District 3 precincts are reporting.
Wendy K. Kleinman
Steve Shafer and Phil Horning are ahead in the race for two spots on the Oklahoma City School Board.
But don’t count out their opponents just yet: Barely one-fifth of each area’s precincts are reporting right now.
As of 7:20 p.m., Shafer holds a slight edge over incumbent Joe Clytus for the District 4 seat.
Shafer has 167 votes, representing 51 percent of the total reporting so far, Oklahoma County Election Board officials say. Clytus has 158 votes, or 49 percent.
In the race for District 3, which is currently vacant, Horning leads Tom Beall 82 votes to 48 votes, or 63 percent to 37 percent, according to the election board.
As candidates running in small-scale races compared to today’s presidential contenders, the school board hopefuls had the opportunity to talk to close-knit groups of constituents during their campaigns, like parents of Harding Charter Preparatory High School students, and residents of the Cleveland Neighborhood Association.
I attended one — the one at Harding. Three of the four candidates were there; Beall said he was ill.
The three who came each got to talk about themselves, and then answered questions from the parents scattered throughout the auditorium about bullying, charter school support, standardized testing and leadership turnover.
Clytus, in thanking the small crowd for showing up that evening, summed up the forum’s purpose: “democracy America.”
Meanwhile, the votes are still being counted.
–Wendy Kleinman, staff writer