Dozens filled the room at the Frederick County Public Schools headquarters to witness two additions to the Board of Education: Jay Mason and Karen Yoho
“We are parents, we are community members, besides now being board members. We want to hear from the community, we want to speak for them, and problem solve with them,” said newly-elected board member, Yoho.
Yoho was a county elementary school teacher for 25 years and says one of her main focuses is improving the pay scale for teachers.
Fellow board member, Mason, aims to bring more support to the Frederick County Career and Technology Center.
“We have a huge waiting list for many of our [Career and Technology Center] programs. So kids want to get in to the schools and do what they like and they can’t because we don’t have the facility to allow them to do that. If we can find a second facility over the next four years that would be amazing. Or expand the one we have,” explained newly-elected board member, Jay Mason.
Brad Young and Liz Barrett were re-elected to their seats and also took their oath to the position.
Young says the diversity of the new board is encouraging, but not complete.
“We’ve heard a lot about [diversity] from our community, and from our students, to have folks that look like the kids that are in school,” explained Young, president of the Board of Education.
“We have a huge population that we need to make sure that everybody is represented. I’m happy to be here and I would love to have more diversity in a couple years,” said Mason.
Following the swearing-in ceremony, the new board voted unanimously to keep Young as president of the board, and elected Joy Schaefer as vice president.
“I’m looking forward to getting to the point where we can go back and start looking at things like reducing class sizes, putting more mental health support positions in schools, updating and putting more newer computers in schools. We’re finally getting over that catching up phase that we can actually start being more proactive,” Young said.
The seat of board member, Ken Kerr, will become vacant after he won election to the House of Delegates.
The County Executive is expected to submit a nominee before the Frederick County Council.