Not Unless County Council Gets Off the Dime
As long as Wicomico County voters aren’t allowed to have a say in who runs their public schools they will continue to see a school system that grows in bureaucracy and borrows to build new schools rather than adequately maintain existing buildings. All anecdotal evidence indicates that a majority of voters favor a school board elected in the same manner as the county council – five members by district and two members at large. The only way to receive objective evidence is a vote at the polls; something that certain special interest groups want to deny Wicomico voters.
An elected school board will not be a silver bullet to correct the problems our public schools face; it certainly won’t yield worse results than we’ve seen to date. However, the powers that be continue to stonewall the county’s voters.
How can we get an elected school board? It all starts with the County Council. They need to pass a resolution which would (hopefully) be signed by newly elected County Executive Bob Culver. Members of the county’s legislative delegation would then be asked to sponsor a bill in Annapolis calling for a question to be placed on the 2016 ballot. If the question received a majority vote of Wicomico voters, it would then fall on the legislature to approve a bill allowing for an elected school board.
The process could fall apart at any step of the process. BUT … it needs to start with the County Council. As the legislative session begins, and the deadline to introduce bills fast approaches, where is the County Council on this issue? They have had two opportunities to introduce a resolution but council president John Cannon hasn’t placed anything on the agenda. Could Culver introduce a resolution? Sure. But let’s face it; his hands are full while the council isn’t doing much more than approving appointments right now.
Cannon claims to support an elected school board, but he set’s the council’s agenda. There is no reason not to place a resolution on the council’s agenda … IMMEDIATELY! Waiting makes it less likely that Wicomico will have an opportunity to select the people who run our schools rather than Annapolis doing it for us.