School board vacancy committee to get to work

February 10, 2003|by PEPPER BALLARD

The newly formed screening panel for the Washington County Board of Education vacancy is scheduled to meet for the first time today to discuss deadlines, criteria and interview schedules to help find the right candidate for the vacant seventh School Board seat.

Screening Panel Chairwoman B. Marie Byers, a former 31-year School Board member, said that today the committee will set a deadline for applications, review rsums that already have been submitted and set up an interview process for candidates who meet the School Board's recommended criteria and qualities.

Byers does not know how many applications have been submitted. She is to pick them up at the Board of Education office this morning.


The seven-member screening committee includes Byers; Washington County Commissioner James Kercheval; Jan Cirincione, former School Board member; School Board President Bernadette M. Wagner; Hagers-town-Washington County Chamber of Commerce member Philip Kelly; Washington County Council of Parent-Teacher Associations President Scott Nicewarner; and Washington County Citizens Advisory Committee Chairperson Gary Nally.

After today, the committee will have 45 days to send three recommended names to Gov. Robert Ehrlich, Byers said.

Ehrlich ultimately will decide who will serve the last two years of former School Board member Doris Nipps' term.

The vacancy opened when Nipps was elected to the Washington County Commissioners in November. She had to resign mid-term from her School Board post in December to take her new position. She had two years left to serve on the board.

The School Board made a list of five desired criteria and 18 desired qualities for the vacant position, which it submitted to the panel. It asked that applicants submit a rsum, cover letter and two letters of recommendation to the committee.

It asked interested applicants to state why they are seeking the position, what qualities they believe are important to the position and what experience, skills, knowledge and personal attributes they can bring to the position.

The School Board is seeking someone with a unique background, such as experience in law, the corporate sector, business, finance or in a military establishment, someone who is highly respected in the community, has a track record of community service and has demonstrated leadership skills, among other criteria.

Some of the 18 qualities the School Board seeks in its applicants are an ability to advocate system positions on education issues, foster a culture supporting the belief that all children can learn at high levels, and keep abreast of state and national educational issues.

Interested applicants are asked to send their rsums to Schools Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Morgan, 820 Commonwealth Ave., Hagerstown, MD 21740, ATTN: Screening Panel.

Byers said the vacant position is nonpartisan and will not be based on a candidate's party affiliation.

"Our main constituency are nonparty people, which are the children," Byers said.

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