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Maryland State Board of Education elects next president

A former Washington County education official will lead the Maryland State Board of Education, the department announced.

Justin M. Hartings was unanimously elected Tuesday as the board’s president. The University of Notre Dame graduate has masters and doctoral degrees in applied physics from Yale University, and he spent more than four years on active duty in the U.S. Army.

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After his military service, Hartings founded a biotechnology company focused on infectious disease research. Biaera Technologies works to prevent and treat respiratory-acquired infectious diseases

Hartings was elected in 2008 and 2012 to the Washington County education board, on which he served as president for two years.

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A move to provide free meals to some 9,500 students in 19 Baltimore County public schools is getting resistance over concerns it could result in less federal money for the system’s most needy students.

The school system delivered the first public-private partnership school construction project in Maryland during his tenure. It also implemented a county-wide digital learning plan for students.

Hartings lives in Washington County with his wife and three children, all of whom attend Washington County Public Schools.

Stephanie R. Iszard, a Prince George’s County private school principal, was also elected Tuesday as the board’s vice president. She has more than 25 years of administrative and classroom experience in both public and private schools.

She’s previously worked as a math teacher, dean of students and chaired several education-related committees. She’s also worked to develop new curricula and fundraised to get Smartboards in every classroom in her school, Cornerstone Christian Academy.

Both Iszard and Hartings will serve one-year terms.

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