Balto. County needs elected school board members [Letter]

Your editorial points up a major problem in the functioning of the Baltimore County Department of Education, and especially the school board ("Signs of trouble in county schools?," Feb. 24).

If board president Lawrence Schmidt does not feel competent to inquire into the wisdom of the superintendent's actions regarding proposed changes to the high school schedule, he should resign his post. As you point out, this is not an issue of micromanagement but of responsible oversight in accordance with the legally mandated duties of the board.

The situation with regard to the high school schedule is further evidence of the necessity of having elected members on the county board of education. We need true accountability on vital decisions affecting the education of Baltimore County students, not pro forma hearings that only create an illusion of public input.

For at least the third year in a row, there is legislation pending before the state House of Delegates and Senate that would put elected members on the board beginning in 2016. During the past two legislative sessions County Executive Kevin Kamenetz prevented similar bills from being reported out of committee.

The present bills have the overwhelming support of committee members from Baltimore County. It is to be hoped that Mr. Kamenetz will express his support for those bills or, at the very least, not oppose them.

It is long past time for Baltimore County to have a Board of Education that is responsive to the concerns of its citizens.

Paul Lang, Timonium

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