Democrats playing Politics with the Howard County Board of Ed

In a story from last month that’s flown a bit under the radar, Howard County Democrats are working to restructure the Howard County Board of Education on partisan lines:

Citing a need for more accountability and diversity on the Howard County Board of Education, two local legislators have drafted a bill that would change the way its members are elected.
Howard County Councilman Jon Weinstein and state Del. Vanessa Atterbeary say they’ve heard from constituents who are confused about where to turn when they have a question for the board.

“People don’t know who to talk to,” said Atterbeary, a Democrat and the mother of three young children, including one who will soon start kindergarten.

She plans to sponsor legislation in the General Assembly that would require five of the board’s seven members to be elected by district. The two remaining members would be elected at-large.

Democrats, of course, love this idea, as do their union allies. County Council districts are gerrymandered to support Democratic candidates. Currently, 4 out of the 5 Howard County Council seats are held by Democrats and while Board of Education seats are by law non-partisan, it is clear that the intent here is for Democrats to put their finger on the scale in support of Democratic-leaning, pro-union Board of Education candidates.

The idea that “people don’t know who to talk to” is straw man argument. When there are seven members of the Board of Education elected countywide, all of them represent all of the people and the interests of all county students, teachers, and taxpayers. Democrats, though, are perfectly willing to sacrifice that approach in order to secure a Democratic majority on the Board of Ed, so their policies can continue to be pushed unchallenged by common sense and other, more reasonable candidates.

The frustrating thing for me as an Anne Arundel County resident is the way that the Democrats play games with elected Boards of Education in this state. Democrats are lining up behind a plan to create a partisan bias on the Howard County Board of Education, but here in Anne Arundel County we can’t even get an elected School Board bill out of the Anne Arundel County Delegation room due to Speaker Michael Busch’s influence and the refusal of the county Senate Democrats to support a bill putting the power in the hands of the people.

As always, Maryland’s Democrats are playing games with the education of our students.

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