Baltimore County is restarting the search to fill a vacancy on the local school board after the Governor’s office failed to choose a candidate during the first search.
The Baltimore County Board of Education is relaunching its search to fill a vacancy after successfully filling three of four open seats. Currently, the Baltimore County Board of Education has 11 active members after four recent vacancies created when Hogan-administration appointees left the Board. On April 12, Governor Moore’s office appointed members to three of the four vacancies, in an usual move, leaving one seat unfilled.
The governor’s office had eight candidates to choose from, ultimately landing on Tiffany LaShawn Frempong, Emory Young and Tiara Booker-Dwyer. The three new people were selected from eight total candidates that the nominating commission sent to the governor’s office for consideration.
Instead of picking the fourth member, “the governor’s office chose three and told the commission to send two new people to consider.” Members of the nominating commission were clear, however, that “the governor’s office took the process seriously and interviewed all the candidates the commission submitted.”
The four terms will end in 2026.
The Baltimore Banner reported on the implications of the unusual move:
It caused frustration and confusion among the public and members on the commission at the time. The governor’s office still has not given a reason for leaving the seat empty. The board will be incomplete when it picks a new superintendent, a search that has been narrowed down to four finalists. They will announce the new superintendent sometime in May.
The Banner also offered some historical context about decisions to not appoint:
It’s unclear how often this happens; most boards of education in the state have all-elected members. But it‘s not unprecedented. In 2002, before Anne Arundel County transitioned to an elected school board, former Gov. Parris Glendening chose not to pick the candidate who received the most votes at the district’s school board nominating convention. Instead, he selected a candidate recommended by the county executive.
Three virtual public input sessions will be conducted in the coming weeks, with the first on Monday, May 1, to inform the public of the vacancy selection process.
The two other public information sessions will be on Thursday, May 4, and Tuesday, May 9. All three of the meetings will start at 7 pm and can be accessed via Zoom.