From Christina McIntyre, president, Bel Air High School Student Government:
This Thursday, March 1, I will be testifying on Senate Bill 816 (HCPS partial student voting rights) at 1:00. The current student representative on the Board of Education, Tony Cofrancesco, and also Ms. Krchnavy from the Board and Mr. Lloyd from the County Executive Office will be testifying as well. Students from the Harford County Regional Association of Student Councils will be attending the hearing to express the support of HCPS students.
Over the past month, we have obtained the near-unanimous support of the Harford Delegation. We gave a presentation to the County Council and obtained unanimous Council support. We also gave a presentation to Mr. Craig and obtained his support as well. Attached is the student written testimony for SB 816. If you would like to view the bill, here is the link: http://mlis.state.md.us/2012rs/billfile/HB1213.htm. This will connect you to HB 1213. The language of SB 816 is currently being changed to match that of HB 1213.
Christina McIntyre, President
Bel Air High School Student Government
The students of Harford County Public Schools SUPPORT Senate Bill 816 which would grant the student member on the Harford County Board of Education the same rights and privileges as an appointed or elected member, with the exception of voting on certain matters and attending executive sessions of the Board of Education addressing these certain matters. Matters the student member is restricted from voting on are geographical attendance, acquisition and disposition of real property and matters pertaining to school construction, employment of architects, donations, condemnation, consolidation of schools and transportation of students, appointment and salary of a county superintendent, employee discipline and other related appeals, budgetary matters, appointment and promotion of staff, collective bargaining for certificated and noncertificated employees, student suspension and expulsion, and school calendar and curriculum.
Senate Bill 816 ensures that student representation is applied to the policies and decisions made by the Harford County Board of Education but limits this application of student representation to content appropriate for the student vote. Factoring the student voice into board policies and decisions through the applied student representation provided by a partial student vote expresses the value that Harford County Public Schools places upon the interest and needs of the students they serve. A partial student vote advances the Board of Education from considering the student voice to implementing the student voice, advancing the capability of the Board to make decisions and create policies that correspond to student interests and needs. Applied student representation through the partial voting rights of the student member empowers students to actively engage their education. Enacting this legislation to permit applied student representation will enable the Harford County Board of Education to better serve the students of Harford County Public Schools.
For these reasons the students of Harford County Public Schools respectively urge a FAVORABLE report on Senate Bill 816.