Excellent set of questions
I'm sold - I now see the benefits of providing as many votes as there are vacant seats.
We also need to think about the reality of a low turnout during the election. Our community is still very young and a low poll is definitely an issue. Worst case scenario - we should prepare for a situation where we don't get a clear voting outcome for all the vacant seats.
So in the event of a valid nomination, and we don't fill all the seats during the election - we should provide for the duly elected members to collaboratively take a decision on filling any vacant seats from valid nominees.
I assume that each nominee will at least get one vote (i.e., his or her own) so I take it you mean what to do in the event of a tie? Or do you mean in the event that there are insufficient nominations to fill all the available seats?
I'm not too concerned about finding valid nominations for the available seats. Given the values of many WikiEducators - I strongly suspect that many nominees would not vote for themselves. I for one, would not vote for myself.
Lets hope that we don't have to deal with such a situation, but in the event that it arises our policy should cater for such situations.
The challenge with an international community is that many voters may not know the nominees and therefore feel that they can't cast a vote for someone they don't know that well. Perhaps I'm being overly "careful" in providing for eventualities that may not arise.
The nominee will be a member of the community - so they should not be restricted from voting.
You raise a good point about what we need to do in the event of a tie.
Also - do we use an open or closed ballot, that is do we publish the vote tallies as they are cast in the traditions of an open community, or do we keep the vote counts secret until the result is published?