A bill has passed the Maryland General Assembly that would alter the way members are appointed to the Harford County Board of Education.
The school board is typically composed of six elected members, three governor-appointed members, a student member and the county superintendent. Under the new bill, the board’s appointed members would now be named by the county executive and would require County Council approval.
State Sen. Bob Cassilly, a Harford County Republican, said the bill ensures that the board’s appointed members are representative of the local populace.
“As education philosophies are differing across the state,” Cassilly said, “we’re to a point in our state where we’re really trying to emphasize being creative at the local level.”
Cassilly said it’s important to maintain local control as education continues to be standardized at the state level.
“We don’t want to lose that local flavor,” he said. “That really requires folks to understand or appreciate the community.”
The bill, sponsored by the Harford County delegation, also states that the county executive must ensure that the appointed members reflect the county’s gender, ethnic and racial diversity. Members appointed within 90 days of the 2022 general election will serve two-year terms. If approved by Gov. Larry Hogan, the bill would take effect July 1.
Cassilly is running for Harford County executive this year. His current opponents are fellow Republican Billy Boniface, chief adviser to County Executive Barry Glassman, and Blane H. Miller III, a Democrat.