Carroll County Times
Carroll County

Editorial: Seidel, Doolan for BOE

Among the four candidates vying for two seats on the Carroll County Board of Education, current board president Jennifer Seidel and former Director of Transportation James Doolan stand out as good choices for voters on Nov. 6.

Seidel made a name for herself as an advocate for education before running for the board in 2008. In that election, her 42,006 votes was the most of all the candidates. She was also the top vote-getter in this year's primary election.

She served on the Mount Airy Middle School's planning committee, and over the past four years she has been active both locally and at the state level in working to improve our education system.

On her website, she notes that her community involvement "has included serving on the Mount Airy Schools Task Force, Parr's Ridge/Mount Airy Elementary PTA, for which she co-chaired Teacher Appreciation Week, the Carroll County Public Schools Curriculum Council, Parents at Home(PATH), and the Suburban Maryland Alumni Chapter of Alpha Omicron Pi. She is also a member of the Mount Airy Middle School PTSO and volunteers with the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts of America along with her husband, Steve."

Doolan has 40 years experience in education, including 33 years with Carroll County Public Schools. In 2010, he placed fourth behind the three incumbents who were up for re-election. This year, Doolan placed second in the primary voting ahead of incumbent Cynthia Foley.

Doolan's experience with the school system and with educational issues in general make him a good fit for the Board of Education. On the profile he filled out for the Carroll County Times election website, Doolan noted he has "30-plus years testifying before both houses in Maryland General Assembly; expert witness before U.S. Senate Committee on Juvenile Justice; President of Maryland Association of Pupil Transportation; political science major in college/Chairman of College Judicial Board at Frostburg State University."

The school system has faced some tough budgets in recent years, and that trend is likely to continue. Making the most of limited dollars, putting more resources toward developing students, new requirements under the federal Race to the Top initiatives and addressing the growing technological needs of our schools will need to be top priorities for the board moving forward. With those thoughts in mind, Seidel and Doolan make for good choices for Board of Education.