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Powers wants to take a 'more active role' on school board

June 21, 2006|by PEPPER BALLARD

WASHINGTON COUNTY

Schools would be safer and more efficient if metal detectors were placed at their entrances, said Virginia Powers, an investigator for Washington County prosecutors, who filed Monday to run for a seat on the county Board of Education.

Powers, 46, of 11901 Indian Lane in Hagerstown, has been an investigator with the Washington County Office of the State's Attorney for 11 years. Before that, Powers served as a county District Court commissioner and an officer with the Hagerstown Police Department.

She is the fourth person, including two incumbents, to file for three seats on the Washington County Board of Education, according to county Election Board information.

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"My community is very important to me, and it's time I take a more active role in it," Powers said Tuesday of her decision to run, an idea she said she has toyed with for about two years.

"Student safety is very important to me. I don't feel that we've done enough to keep our children safe," said Powers, who has a teenage daughter in Washington County Public Schools.

"I think we should have metal detectors in schools - that would give most parents a little sense of security," Powers said. "This is 2006, and we have some major issues with drugs and weapons."

Powers said she believes placing metal detectors at schools would cut back on school lockdowns.

"It wouldn't take two hours out of the day because 'Student A' had a knife in their pocket," she said.

Powers said she also wants students to be better prepared to enter the work force, and feels there should be more through the schools to teach them what to expect.

Powers said this is her first run for public office, but she has held positions with several organizations over the years.

School Board Vice President Jacqueline B. Fischer, and members Paul W. Bailey and Russell F. Williams are up for re-election.

Fischer and Williams have filed. Ruth Anne Callaham also filed to run for one of the open seats, according to Election Board information.

Bailey could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

The deadline to file is July 3. The primary election is Sept. 12, and the general election is Nov. 7.

Seats on the School Board are nonpartisan. A primary election will be Sept. 12 if seven or more people file for the three openings, Kaye Robucci, county Board of Elections election deputy director, has said.

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