Wednesday, July 07, 2010

19 File to run for Board of Education

Let me know if you have ever heard of any of these people before. Some are complete strangers. Quite a few have come before the board for one thing or another and haven't gotten their way and are now running. Others are just...you've go to be kidding me :)

Jennifer Abell (incumbent)
Douglas Bonaro (anyone know this guy; Never heard of him before)
Patricia Bowie
Maura Cook (incumbent)
Barbara Cooksey-Feeney (Anyone know her; never heard of her before)
Paul Donato
Michael Green
Robert Harlan
Jason Henry Sr. (anyone know this guy; Never heard of him before)
Blaine Lessard (sounds familiar but can't place him)
Mike Lukas
Narain Mathur
Monifa Tarjamo
Shanetta Oliver (Anyone know her; never heard of her before)
Pamela Pederson (incumbent)
Sue Richards (Anyone know her; never heard of her before)
Donald Wade (incumbent) (I can't believe he is doing this)
Michael Wilson (anyone know this guy; Never heard of him before)
Roberta Wise (incumbent)

41 comments:

Anonymous said...

Michael Green was my professor of economics at CSM back in the day(9 years ago.) I'm not sure if he's still working there or not. I thought he was a great teacher and I even considered changing my major to ECON. He's been active in the PTOs where his kids attend, and as a person, I find him to be honorable. I haven't had a chance to find out his recent political views, and I don't recall any clues to such when he was my teacher.

Anonymous said...

Barbara Cooksey-Feeney is a longtime educator who started in Charles County and is the former principal (left last year) at Mechanicsville Elementary School in St. Mary's County.

Anonymous said...

Michael Wilson was a vice principal in Charles County Public Schools and a principal in Washington, DC Public Schools. He also is a professor at CSM. I believe he has a doctorate degree or two. I understand he is either up for or just got a job coaching newly hired principals.

Anonymous said...

So a professor of Economics at CSM qualifies him for doing what?
He's proven that he can't get a job at a major university.
Who's the bozo hiring him to coach anyone at the local HS?
Why can't we spend some money by rewarding highly performing teachers whose students' test scores have improved this year?

We need to spend money effectively, and I don't see the correlation between a nine year community college Econ professor motivating a darn soul.

Anonymous said...

Michael Green's qualifications to run for elected office notwithstanding, I take great offense to the implication that teaching at CSM is the "B" team of college professors. Were it not for quality educators at CSM many of our transfer students would not have a chance of surviving the academic rigor of a major 4-year university. As a member of the "B" team at CSM, I have personal experiences with too many underprepared, and yes, "AP" students from CCPS. Trust me, they are not up to the abilities of the kids from Calvert or St. Mary's. CCPS does nothing to prepare our students for college. It seems to spends more money on media spin than academics. Perhaps, that might be why Mr. Green is running?

Anonymous said...

You misunderstood where I'm coming from. I think that we are on the same page.
CCPS spends WAY too much money on paying people to "coach" the ACT, SAT, blah, blah, blah. They spend WAY too much money on paying "experts" to come into the system, teach a clinic, collect their money, then leave.

You are right on with CCPS being plain aweful when compared to SMPS or Calvert. CCPS has an incredibly high percentage of "graduates" demonstrating their results of illiteracy from CCPS.
That is common knowledge. Eight out of 286 students scored an 1800 out of 2400 or above on the SAT.
At McDonough HS, how could this be?

In my eyes, CSM should come into CCPS and teach any AP class with a score of 3.5 or below. How they ever get away with keeping incompetent teachers teaching AP classes that year after year from bottom of the barrel results.

Are the parents punch drunk? These students have the ability! It's the incompetent administrators from the school system on up to Radio Station Road.

If these people were in private industry and continually produced these ghastly results, they would have been fired "a month of Sundays" ago.

I've taken classes at CSM and have had excellent instruction. My problem lies with CCPS spending another nickel of taxpayer money and again, not getting a dime's worth of results.

The people of Charles County need people to run for the BOE that will get rid of Richmond and any others that have run the school system into the ground.

We need professionals from advertising, medicine, technical fields, as well as seasoned educators from successful school systems to take the flock of turkeys that Richmond has been cooking up, "can" those, and actually cultivate "Eagles." The schools need more supervision from the professional community as to what must be expected to prepare high school graduates that want to matriculate to four-year universities.

Whoever finally had a stroke of genius on the AP side, a big hat-tip for Anne Marie Swanson heading that up.

There still may be hope.

Anonymous said...

Hi all, My name is Patricia Campos Bowie and I am running for Charles County Board of Education. I am grateful to Jennifer and Collins for encouraging me to run for BOE.

I invite you all to visit my website: http://www.bowie4boe.com/

Thanks for your support!

Anonymous said...

Ms. Abell,
I am not sure who you think you are but I will tell you – you are an arrogant unprofessional who does not deserve to represent the children of Charles County. How dare you belittle other candidates? These folks care enough to want to volunteer their time and efforts to make the school system a better place for our students and teachers. Who are you to judge their qualifications and intentions? I know a few of the candidates have had illustrious military careers and hold post graduate degrees. From what I can tell form your short bio you have only earned an associates degree – and what are your qualifications again???? Being an incumbent does not make you more qualified nor a better candidate, in fact you should be warned that being an incumbent this season is NOT an advantage - so do not get to cocky in your confidence to win this election. For most of us it will be Jennifer Abell “ Are kidding Me - Never want to hear from her again.”

CC: Maryland Independent

Jennifer said...

@Anonymous 8/25/2010 4:32 PM ,
Please point out where I have belittled anyone. I hAve not singled anyone out, called names, etc. unlike you who hide behind an anonymous posting. From your posting verbiage though you must be a support of Donald Wade.

Anonymous said...

"Quite a few have come before the board for one thing or another and haven't gotten their way and are now running. Others are just...you've go to be kidding me :)"

With this comment (above) you have belittled those who are trying to do good for their community and you should be ashamed. How dare you with your "you've got to be kidding me"

What makes you think your not the joke - its obviouse you are trying way too hard to be something you are not and I doubt you are truley qualified for this position.
I have belittled anyone. I hAve not singled anyone out, called names, etc. unlike you who

Jennifer said...

@Anonymoous 8/25/2010 6:52 PM

I refuse to get into a debate with you when your mind is clearly made up. My six year term on the Board of Education and my voting record speaks for itself. Lucky for you this is America and you can vote or not vote for who you wish.

Anonymous said...

The debate will be at the polls. And if you think writing “are you kidding me” in relation to other candidates is not derogatory then you are nastier than I thought. Are you so arrogant that you think only the incumbents of are capable of running the School Board? I too have children in the school system and if you think County parents are pleased with the running if the Board than you have another thing coming. Why do you think there are so many people throwing their hat in the ring?
Good try on guessing who I support – but not surprisingly you are wrong. I have not made up mind – so I got on your web site to read about your platform but I did not need to read any further than your condescending attitude towards other candidates to make up my mind that you are not getting my vote.

Anonymous said...

To "Angry Anonymous": you're just a mess of contradictions, now aren't you? You raise the question of qualifications in dismissing whatever Ms Abell's may be (apparently six years of doing the job don't cut it with you), but tout the "illustrious military career" of others, as if that carries any weight. Now, don't get me wrong, I served rather honorably myself and hold military service in high regard, but I don't see where a stint in the service makes one any more qualified for an elected position than a stint anywhere else, except maybe prison. Your determination of what makes one individual more qualified for elected office is just as subjective as anyone else's. To presume your subjective list of qualifications matters more than someone else's requires a little of that arrogance you accuse ms Abell of having.

It's also interesting how the half of your posts not spent deriding Ms Abell for belittling other candidates is spent belittling Ms Abell. Perhaps you're not a candidate for the BOE, but perhaps you are. The fact you remain anonymous in your criticism allows for all sorts of conjecture. Regardless, that you can alternate so seamlessly from belittling an individual to criticizing them for belittling others seems just a tad hypocritical. The reasons you gave for finding fault in Ms Abell's comments--"These folks care enough to want to volunteer their time and efforts to make the school system a better place for our students and teachers"--apply just as well to her. Which in turn means your question--"Who are you to judge their qualifications and intentions?"--applies just as well to you. I doubt seriously you're capable of seeing the irony in your behavior. You may as well stand up and shout, "I can't stand intolerant people!"

Now, continue on ranting, as I'm sure you must. It's apparent you had an agenda already in progress when you arrived and were just looking for an opportunity to pounce.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps Ms. Abell's comment "I can't believe he's doing this" is more out of concern for Mr. Wade's ongoing health issues. Being an elected representative is not an easy job. I have personally witnessed Mr. Wade falling asleep at public meetings (Ms. Wise had to actually nudge and on more than one occasion.) Often, he appears to be unable to keep up with the discussion as his comments appear to come from out of left field and are irrelevant to the topic at hand. I am sure his heart is in the right place, but let's get some people on this board that can stay awake through the entire ONCE A MONTH public meetings and discuss/debate on topic. Ms. Abell's voting record and contributions to discussions clearly indicate she understands the issues and has done her homework. She is able to keep up with the discussion and contribute in an articulate manner. Whether or not I agree with her voting record is irrelevant to this discussion. She can do the job. Mr. Wade has a difficult time focusing. His military career has nothing to do with his qualifications.

Anonymous said...

I have a few "You've got to be kidding me's" myself.... Maura Cook, Pam Pederson, Donald Wade, and Bobby Wise. They may be connected in the community, but given their voting records and the state of our school system (or should I say skool sistim)each and every one of them should be out on their behinds. Donald Wade is an embarrassment every time he opens his mouth, Peterson and Cook are just puppets of the overpaid superintendent and Ms. Wise is just flat out arrogant. Thank heaven Mr. Bailey and his hidden radical religious agenda will no longer torment our school system and good luck to Mr. Carrington. Hopefully he will not become a puppet of the county administrator the way he became our superintendent's puppet. Every single one of the incumbents campaigned on transparency yet this has been the most non-transparent board I can remember, and I've been in CC a looooong time. Thank you, Ms. Abell for getting the real news out via your blog. Rest assured, you will most likely be my single shot on the BOE ballot.

Anonymous said...

I do agree that there should be an almost clean sweep of the board, commissioners, delegates, etc., but I wouldn't necessarily single shot the ballot. I think Anonymous should check out Green and Lukas for board of ed.

Anonymous said...

It's a good point re: Wade's competence on the board. I, too, attended several meetings over the last couple years, and have caught several more on video, and have seen him on many times seem utterly befuddled or confused. A prime example is his accidental vote that gave the chairmanship of the board to Bobbi Wise. He was thoroughly confused on what he was voting for and thought he was nominating her for the Vice-chair position. He makes that sort of mistake on budgetary or personnel issues and the consequences can be significant. This is not a ceremonial position that should be bestowed upon a person in honor of his "illustrious military career." It has real responsibilities that require real mental acuity to perform. I don't think Wade's got the faculties to perform the job anymore.

Anonymous said...

This is my first blog in this mess of 17 comments. Reading Ms Abell's page as well as her comments point to her as the culpret in this.

She should have been more professional than as to make comments such as:

"Let me know if you have ever heard of any of these people before"

"Quite a few have come before the board for one thing or another and haven't gotten their way and are now running"

"Others are just...you've go to be kidding me :)"

as well as all of her "never heard of them before comments"

She must have known that if nothing else, these comments were insulting and projected her as arrogant to anyone reading this. This has nothing to do with her voting record, or her understanding of the "issues," but, it has everything to do with perception (and perception is everything). The perception in reading her comments is that she is an arrogant, know-it-all, who likes to project herself at the expense of others.

I know that a some of you reading this must agree with me-even if you are her supporter and I'd think you would want to say "hey Jennifer, you sounded bad and insulting."

Then to add to the issue is Ms Abell's responses of defense instead of the appology she should have provide for her insulting comments (too late now).

Back to perception. She may have the best voting record, she may know the issues, but do I want a person like this (a person who is insulting and then refuses to appologize)to make issue regarding the wellfare of our children.

Fore if she can't use good judgement in her "Blog" how would I expect she'd use good judgement while sitting on the board.

If you are truely a supporter of Ms Abell, I'd suggest to you to encourage her to tuck away her arrogance and come down to earth with the other people who will vote (or probably not vote) for her.

Anonymous said...

"anyone know this guy; Never heard of him before"

"anyone know her; never heard of her before"

thats funny Ms Abell - your on the board and I never heard of you before all of this

You got to be kidding me that you think your that well known

LegalBeaglette said...

Anonymous @ 4:32, 6:52, 8:39 (& 12:38, 1:04) – May I ask whether you have attended, or watched, any school board meetings? Read minutes? Perhaps you are new to the county, and unfamiliar with the qualifications, platforms, voting record and overall engagement of people who currently serve on the Board of Education, and seek such information so late in the game. It’s unfortunate that you inferred such negative connotations from Ms. Abell’s comments; I hope you choose to be more discerning in your research for the upcoming election.

That individuals run for elected positions because they have engaged elected boards (whether commissioner or school) in some way and were dissatisfied with the experience is not new. You even acknowledged that: “…if you think County [sic] parents are pleased with the running if [sic] the Board than [sic] you have another thing coming. Why do you think there are so many people throwing their hat in the ring?”

As members of the electorate, you (and I, and others) have the opportunity to choose who represents us on educational issues addressed by the Board of Education; we all hope to make informed, wise choices. We hope we can rely on the assertions made by candidates prior to the election to be the reality once they are actually elected (some current board members have disappointed greatly in that regard).

I have appreciated Ms. Abell’s commitment -- to transparency, to adhering to the laws regarding public meetings, to supporting the best interests of students.

Her blog is part of that commitment, and it is a forum, not a roast.

Anonymous said...

Jennifer,

I'm sorry this is off topic, but I couldn't find any relevant place to post this.

How much money did the BOE spend to bring in Ben Glenn for the last 2 days doing presentations for all the county teachers including appearance fees, hotel, airfare, meals, car rentals etc?

Jennifer said...

Anonymous @8/26/2010 10:52 PM,
No problem. Belo0w is the response I received from staff.

"The total paid for Ben Glenn, the "Chalk Guy," was $8,500. The money is from our ARRA Staff Development funds. The payment included four presentations to teachers over two days and all travel-related expenses. It also includes delivery of four large finished drawings from the sessions that are provided to four schools.

Mr. Glenn is also known as The Simple ADHD Expert with a true passion for speaking to teachers and parents. He knows the difference a teacher can make in a student’s life. He was identified as Learning Disabled in early elementary school and incorporates his struggles and accomplishments in his presentation. He is a very talented artist thus the Chalk Guy label and a passionate advocate for students and teachers."

Jack said...

This blog site is a joke. If Jennifer Abel is not willing to hold people accountable for what they say on this blog, by allowing anonymous post, I can't imagine she will be willing to hold anyone accountable for what they say or do relative to our schools.

MikeB said...

Jack, I see no logic in your comment. The fact that nearly every blog site I know of allows some form of anonymous posting notwithstanding, the conclusion you draw doesn't logically follow from the premise. It's a non sequitur.

Jennifer said...

Jack,
I'm sorry you feel that way. I am an incumbent and have served on the school board for the past six years and I DO hold people accountable. Check my track record. I began this blog four to five years ago and allow the anonymous post so people will feel free to comment honestly and uninhibited. (Some feel they may suffer retribution by commenting honestly, especially if they are employed by CCPS). I could require all commenters to be registered users but then we would have fictitious names followed by gmail accounts. The anonymous posters have never been a problem before because most people act mature and don't go into personal attacks. In addition, I could delete unwanted comments but that is a form of censorship and I don't believe in it. I want to hear the good and the bad.

For those upset by this original post...I am sorry it was taken the wrong way. Honestly it was just a quick post to list those running. It was not intended to endorse or bash anyone. The comment "don't know this person...." was intended for others that may know the person or the person themselves to comment about their platform and give a brief synopsis of themselves for my readers. As for the comment next to Wade "you've got to be kidding me" was based on personal knowledge and conversation with him myself. It was my understanding he wouldn't be running again and it came as a shock when I saw he had registered.

As always I invite everyone to email or call me 301-659-4112 and we can meet for coffee or something and discuss anything in more detail.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info re: Chalk Guy. Just want to know how accurate the rumors were.

Jennifer said...

Now i'm curious...what was the rumor?

Anonymous said...

Now that the school year is about to start, I am hearing of classrooms with class sizes of 28 to 30 children. I am conflicted. If the teachers have that many students in a class, how can they be expected to teach 2nd grade to where the children learn. In this case the teachers deserved there raises.

If we had not given the teachers their retroactive raises and gave Mr. Richmond a reasonable salary maybe we could afford to hire more teachers to make the class sizes resonable for learning.

I am hoping you can help me understand this.

Anonymous said...

Following the person in front of me I would like to ask about the retroactive raises. These are hard economic times. The entire country is hurting. Our EMT's, county employees and county sheriffs are taking paycuts. Why are teachers and BOE employees not required to help out with the budget. I find it an insult.

Denise said...

My name is Shanetta Oliver and I am currently running for a seat on the Charles County Board of Education. By chance, I had the opportunity to chat with Ms. Abell over coffee this morning. I did not expect to start my day off this way, but enjoyed it nonetheless. The “coffee talk” with this fellow parent gave me insight into who she is as a current school board member, and who she is as a person.

Jennifer said...

Thank you Shanetta, I enjoyed it also. Please feel free o tell us a little about yourself and why you chose to run for the board of education.

LegalBeaglette said...

With regard to Mr. Wade, the concerns regarding his performance as a board member are not new, either. The mis-match between “his” published letters and his performance, language skills, understanding of issues, etc. has been apparent to many. I have been mystified and discouraged by the current board’s commitment to electing him to their leadership positions, whether as chair or vice-chair. I have been concerned by what appears to be the system’s efforts to “prop” his person. I have watched people cringe when he comments, or look surprised/confused when they speak with him in public for the first time, and the caliber of the response is not what they anticipated. The dozing is…well, overall, there are those of us who are embarrassed for, and by, him – and that’s based upon personal observations, and over time.

Anonymous said...

To help educate Mike B and others who think this blog site might have any credibility what so ever, a legitimate blog site requires registration and validation of email. Again, I stand by the fact that if Jennifer Abell is not willing to hold people accountable for what they say on this blog site, I can't believe she will hold anyone accountable regarding our schools.

MikeB said...

Thank you, Anon, for trying to help educate me. Fortunately, you don't get to define what is or isn't a "legitimate" blog. I'd rather base my determination on the years of relevant and insightful topics and conversations that have been posted here and not some arbitrary "rule" set down by a single participant.

Certainly, there are people who have shown up with an axe to grind or an agenda already established, and they have taken advantage of their ability to post anonymously. But that has been the exception, not the rule. For years the blog has worked well. It has been informative, timely, and a good resource for both general education topics and issues specific to CCPS. I find that a far better indication of its legitimacy than a single administrative function decided upon by the blog owner.

Jennifer said...

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and i do believe in freedom of speech.
As for holding anyone accountable, i don't see where anyone has been maliciously personally attacked (except maybe myself. People are stating their opinions and observations of various candidates.
Again, I don't see the difference in allowing someone to post anonymously or having someone by a name "Legalbeagelette" with a gmail account. Both are unidentifiable. I as administrator do have the ability to delete comments but have only had to do so in the past for spam and would like for it to remain the only instance that i need to do so.
In addition, I would like to remind everyone that students read this blog also. So please keep your comments clean and don;t include personal attacks, vendetta's, or malicious comments about a persons personal life or their family.

Anonymous said...

What in the world!? I feel like I'm reading a high-schooler's blog instead of an adult's blog.

Asking people to weigh in on others running for a position you currently hold and then making comments about them that can be taken negatively is not very wise.

Your role on the Board requires you to make decisions that have short-term and long-term implications for the quality of education our children receive as well as the careers of our educators and supporting staff. Your blog comments do not inspire confidence in your effectiveness in your position.

Aren't Board terms for four years? Why have you only served six and are running again? Maybe I'm not clear on the electoral process but it seems you were not initially elected to the Board. Is this true?

Charles County has not always been the most progressive when it comes to the area of elected officials. I recently learned that Charles County elected its first person of color as a commissioner less than 10 or 15 years ago.

Looking at your qualifications and experience, I am really not sure why you are in the position in the first place and what you have to bring to the table. You may have gotten re-elected because you were already on the Board when elections came around (again, why?). Charles County is growing and becoming more progressive. Attitudes such as yours are becoming a thing of the past.

Your recent Twitter comment -
"One candidate in particular is a conniving, deceitful, back-stabber that is only interested in the perceived power."
does not speak well of you. Your mud-slinging is inappropriate. People typically judge others according to their own standards. A liar assumes that everyone else lies, a thief assumes that everyone else steals, a cheater assumes that everyone else cheats, and a power hungry person assumes that everyone else is power hungry. I am not saying that you are power hungry, I am making an observation about human nature.

If you are re-elected to your position on the Board, I sincerely hope that you treat your position as a priveledge and honor and not use it as a platform to thumb your nose at others and rub you "perceived power" in their faces.

Jennifer said...

Anonymous 9/14/2010 9:36 PM,
There's isn't anything new I can say, please see my earlier comments and replies.
I would love to meet with you so we can talk about the issues important to you. Please feel free to call me anytime 301-659-4112.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous @ 9:36 pm - I, for one of many, (according to recent election results)do appreciate Ms. Abell's efforts. Her blog is a refreshing change to the good-old-boy back door way of doing things. She has kept her original campaign promise to be transparent, unlike the rest of the incumbents. She does her homework and asks the tough questions, again, unlike the rest of the incumbents!

Please read her post just above yours. Ms. Abell asks us to "please keep your comments clean and don;t include personal attacks, vendetta's, or malicious comments about a persons personal life or their family." Your name calling is not conducive to an intellectual exchange of ideas. Yours are the types of posts that lend a high schoolish flair to this site. Please refrain from the mud slinging and debate the issues. Perhaps those that mud sling also assume others are mudslingers. Again, just an observation about human behavior. Good luck, Ms. Abell.

LegalBeaglette said...

Anon @ 9:36 p.m.: Charles County IS growing, and it IS (however slowly) becoming…more aware.

It is thanks to people like Ms. Abell that the administration of Charles County Public Schools now makes more of an effort to be in compliance with the Open Meetings Act. There are actually written executive session minutes now, which are reviewed and officially approved by the Board of Education! There is actually someone on the Board of Education who will say, “Hey, we should not be discussing this here…it should be on the agenda and discussed in public session.” (Thank you, Ms. Abell!) The school system is more aware of what constitutes “public information” under the law (like minutes, AP scores, superintendent contracts, and policy). Many have very little idea what a giant leap forward (“progressive,” if you please, Anon @ 9:36) those things are for Charles County Public Schools.

AWESOME!

As a society, we are increasingly “data-driven” – and Ms. Abell has impressed me with her longstanding effort to review the data, and to stay on top of local, state and national educational issues. She knows that without information, BoE representatives cannot make informed decisions. Ms. Abell’s fellow board members have voiced their respect for her note-taking, her attention to detail, her ability to keep track of the important issues the BoE addresses (and over time). I know that she does her research on testing and testing results, school safety and discipline, school construction and maintenance, academic equity, budget concerns and teacher qualifications (and she knows the difference between a teacher who is “highly-qualified” to teach a subject and a teacher who is “highly-qualified” for the subject he/she teaches…I wish all parents did!)

As someone who has watched Ms. Abell throughout her tenure on the Board of Education (all six years, and I know WHY it is six years, and I know HOW she became a board member), read her blog, knows her educational and employment background, and discussed issues with her personally (we do not always agree), I believe that she has treated her elected position as a privilege and an honor…and a R-E-S-P-O-N-S-I-B-I-L-I-T-Y…and she has shown her dedication to the best interests of the students.

Anonymous said...

Now I'm curious, why has she been on the board for six years? Did she run for election or was she put on some other way?

Why are these posts sounding like they are being done by people running her re-election campaign?

The other anonymous person (anon 9:36pm) asked some legit questions and all you all have done is bring up everything but respond to their questions. Then you insinuate they are a mudslinger when they remind Ms. Abell of the discretion she must use when making decisions on the Board. I saw the Twitter post where she makes some inappropriate remarks about her potential fellow board members. Her past performance on the Board didn't seem to be the issue but her tactlessness and poor judgement in what she says and posts in public forums.

If Ms. Abell is so transparent, why not tell why how she got to be on the Board in the first place? Is it a secret? Did she run for election and win her seat on the Board? Is that too hard to answer?

I don't usually post to these things, but I'm curious about the avoidance of responding to direct questions and telling people to read prior responses that don't answer the questions. Hmm. I need to look in to this.

LegalBeaglette said...

Oh my goodness! (laughing) “Politics” is not my thing; I could not even envision myself “running a campaign.” I have followed the Charles County Board of Education since we moved to this county many years ago, and long before Ms. Abell served on it. As a parent, I am keenly interested in what it does, the decisions it makes, and the people who serve on it.

Six years: No, there is no secret, and I did not intend to imply there was one; I am so sorry you perceived it that way!

Former BoE member Rebecca Bridgett, PhD, resigned without fulfilling her four-year term. The remaining board members filled the vacancy after requesting applications from the public, interviewing the individuals, and making a decision on Dr. Bridgett’s replacement. Ms. Abell was selected, and fulfilled the term; she ran for the position in the next election, and won. Two years of Dr. Bridgett’s term plus four years of the current elected term equals six years. [This process was followed after the resignation of former BoE member Ms. Levanduski, whose position was filled by Turner Coggins, Jr.; he did not retain his seat in the subsequent election).

[Ms. Abell, correct me if I have flubbed any details, please!]