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Three new BOE members sworn in

December 07, 2010|By JULIE E. GREENE | julieg@herald-mail.com
  • Jacqueline Fischer, middle, gets handshakes from Karen Harshman and Paul Bailey after the three were sworn in Tuesday as members of the Washington County Board of Education.
Ric Dugan/Staff Photographer

HAGERSTOWN — An incumbent, a returning member and a political newcomer were sworn in Tuesday afternoon as part of the Washington County Board of Education.

About 60 people attended the ceremony and reception afterward at the school board’s central office in Hagerstown.

The seven-member board will get back to business next Tuesday with meetings that include a budget retreat.

“I am sure that all in this room recognize the challenges that are facing the board and our country as a whole today,” returning incumbent Paul Bailey said after being sworn in by Washington County Clerk of the Circuit Court Dennis Weaver.

Bailey didn’t get into specifics, but those challenges will include preparing the budget for the next fiscal year during tough financial times.

Bailey, 76, of Hagerstown, is a former teacher and school administrator who is starting his fourth consecutive term on the school board.

Also sworn in Tuesday were retired teachers Karen Harshman and Jacqueline Fischer. Fischer served on the school board from 2002 to 2006.

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“I’d like to pledge to my fellow board members, to the superintendent, staff, to parents, citizens of this community that I will do my very best to fulfill the obligations of this position, to make the best decisions that I can for the students of Washington County,” said Fischer, 64, who lives west of Hagerstown.

“And finally, to my mother who is recently departed, I hope I make you proud,” Fischer said.

Several Washington County Commissioners attended, including former school board member Ruth Anne Callaham, as well as friends and family of the newly elected school board members.

Harshman said about 20 people attended to support her, including Denise Frye, president of the Washington County Teachers Association; a former student; Bo Myers, one of the principals at North Hagerstown High when Harshman taught there; and Harshman’s friend and hairdresser, who did her hair for the ceremony.

“I know that I will need some assistance from the current board members, and I’m sure that I will get that, and that every issue will be addressed in a professional manner and in a timely manner,” Harshman told attendees.

“And I hope that everyone will feel free to discuss any issues with any of us in order to make sure that we have done our very best for our children,” said Harshman, 64, who lives east of Hagerstown.

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