School board hopefuls to participate in 'town-hall style' forum

February 05, 2008|By ERIN CUNNINGHAM

HAGERSTOWN - The nine candidates running for four open seats on the Washington County Board of Education are expected to participate Thursday in a public "town-hall style" forum.

The forum, hosted by the Citizens for Protection of Washington County, will be at 7 p.m. at the Volunteer Fire Co. of Halfway.

The field of nine candidates running in the Feb. 12 primary election for the school board includes two incumbents and three former board members.

The candidates are competing for four open seats on the board. Eight will move on to the Nov. 4 general election.


The candidates are Donna Brightman, Jacqueline B. Fischer, W. Edward Forrest, Meredith Fouche, Justin M. Hartings, Tom Janus, Margaret Lowery, Wayne D. Ridenour and Russell F. Williams II.

The public is invited to learn about the candidates during the forum, and how they plan to address the challenges facing Washington County Public Schools, according to a press release.

The program will include a brief self-introduction from each candidate, a question-and-answer session with questions from the audience and a group discussion or debate among the candidates. The discussion will focus on solutions for overcrowding of the county's public schools, according to the release.

The forum will last about one hour and 45 minutes, and there will be no closing remarks.

The direction, progress, conduct and time limits of all segments of the forum will be strictly enforced by the moderator and timekeeper, according to the release.

During the first segment, candidates will be allowed no more than three minutes to introduce themselves and talk about what they see as the most serious issue facing the school system. They also will comment on what steps they would take to initiate change or improvement, according to the release.

During the second portion of the forum, questions from the audience will be directed to only one candidate that the audience member chooses. The candidate will be allowed no more than 2 1/2 minutes to respond, according to the release.

All candidates are expected to participate in the group discussion to talk about a problem and debate possible solutions. The object of the discussion is to display the candidates' leadership and teamwork abilities, according to the release.

If you go

What: Citizens for Protection of Washington County's public "town-hall style" forum for Washington County Board of Education candidates. All nine candidates have agreed to participate.

When: Thursday, 7 p.m.

Where: Volunteer Fire Co. of Halfway, 11114 Lincoln Ave., Halfway

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