Elk­ton grand­fa­ther files for school board

Cecil Whig - - LOCAL - By JES­SICA IANNETTA jian­netta@ce­cil­whig.com

ELK­TON — Evan Jones Jr., a grand­fa­ther of three and long­time county res­i­dent, has filed for school board, set­ting up a con­tested race in Dis­trict 5.

Jones, 65, will face off against Diana Haw­ley for the Dis­trict 5 seat, which is cur­rently held by board pres­i­dent Dawn Branch, who is term-lim­ited and can­not run again. School board seats are non-par­ti­san and since only two peo­ple have filed for the Dis­trict 5 seat, Jones and Haw­ley won’t have to com­pete in the pri­mary but will in­stead face off in the Novem­ber gen­eral elec­tion.

Jones has lived in Ce­cil County for more than 25 years and has three grand­chil­dren in Ce­cil County Pub­lic Schools. Prior to re­tir­ing two years ago, Jones worked at a print­ing com­pany in Delaware for 24 years in a va­ri­ety of roles, most re­cently in qual­ity con­trol. He also holds a bach­e­lor’s de­gree in busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tion from Mont­clair State Univer­sity.

Jones’ run for school board started out as a bit of a joke among him and his grand­chil­dren, with Jones telling them “wait un­til I’m on the school board, then things are go­ing to change,” he said Wed­nes­day. But upon fur­ther con­sid­er­a­tion, Jones re­al­ized that as a re- tiree, he does have the time to im­prove things and per­haps fix the “bro­ken” sys­tem.

In par­tic­u­lar, Jones wants to see a re­turn to the ba­sics, not­ing that when his grand­chil­dren bring home their math home­work, it looks noth­ing like the math he re­mem­bers.

“Back in the day, it was al­ways read­ing, writ­ing and arith­metic,” he said. “I think you need those three things to set a good foun­da­tion to carry on. With­out a good foun­da­tion, a lot of kids fall through the cracks.”

On that same note, Jones said he isn’t a fan of the Com­mon Core cur­ricu­lum be­cause he thinks it should be solely up to the lo­cal com­mu­nity on how to best ed­u­cate its kids. Jones said he feels there’s too much in­ter­fer­ence from the fed­eral and state gov­ern­ment al­ready.

In terms of school se­cu­rity, Jones said he thinks CCPS does a good job but that there is al­ways more room for im­prove­ment. He’s also against an idea that’s been floated na­tion­ally of arm­ing qual­i­fied teach­ers, say­ing it would cause more prob­lems than it would solve.

Jones hasn’t been fol­low­ing the school bud­get process that closely this year but said he’d like to see some dif­fer­ent spend­ing pri­or­i­ties, not­ing he doesn’t agree with the re­cent de­ci­sion to spend $2 mil­lion on a field house for Per­ryville High School. He would have in­stead liked to see that money go to­ward se­cu­rity up­grades or other im­prove­ments.

But in gen­eral, Jones wants to see a re­turn to ba­sics, which he said starts with talk­ing to the peo­ple that are in county schools every day.

“Some­times you have to go back to the ground level and talk to stu­dents and teach­ers and get their view­points on how they think things should be bet­ter,” he said.

The only other con­tested school board race is in Dis­trict 3, where Conowingo Bap­tist Church Pas­tor Joshua McCord and Conowingo Ele­men­tary School PTO Pres­i­dent Christie Stephens will com­pete for the seat cur­rently held by Wendy Win­ter­s­gill, who also is term-lim­ited and can­not run again. In Dis­trict 4, in­cum­bent Bill Malesh is un­op­posed in his bid for a sec­ond term.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.