Can we have a little sanity on the Allegany County Board of Education, please?

Ever since the Three Amigos (they actually called themselves that) were elected to the board, Cumberland has been a laughing-stock in education circles, and our children have suffered.

The very fact that these men declared they would vote as a bloc was an insult to residents who believe that each member of a school board ought to weigh issues involving our children’s education using his or her particular combination of judgment, experience and wisdom.

Now that the most egregious violator of the public trust, Wayne Foote, has been removed from his position by the Maryland State Board of Education for misconduct and willful neglect of duty, Gov. Larry Hogan has an opportunity to bring some stability.

We appeal to the governor to name Edward Root to the open position. We do not know Root personally, nor are we involved with the board in any way.

We are just parents who have a child in the school system, people who long for a Board that will advance actual educational policy. In conversations with many other parents, we have come to appreciate that Root has a resume unmatched by anyone in Western Maryland.

His career in education spans 54 years, beginning with his days as a teacher in Allegany County Public Schools.

He was a member and president of the Allegany County Board of Education, as well as a member and president of the Maryland State Board of Education, and a professor and dean at Frostburg State University.

He was the 2018 recipient of the Maryland Association of Boards of Education’s Distinguished School Board Service Award.

Our community has been ravaged by the tenure of Wayne Foote. We desperately need a voice of reason and experience to help shape educational policy for our children. Root’s appointment would go a long way toward setting our board of education back on firm footing.

Russell Shorto

Pamela Twigg


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