Pupils get to the bottom of school board issues

January 12, 1994|By Liz Atwood | Liz Atwood,Staff Writer

The life of a county school board member may not seem glamorous to most people, but to a group of Hillsmere Elementary School fifth-graders yesterday, the job seemed pretty cool.

The 12 student members of the Annapolis school's Human Relations Committee prepared lunch for board member Carlesa Finney and peppered her with questions about what she does.

"What does the room look like where you have the meetings?" asked Darin McFadden.

"Is it dark with a big light shining down?" asked Emily Bavis.

Ms. Finney took the opportunity to invite the students to attend a meeting. She also tried to ease their anxieties about pending middle school.

"Make sure you be yourself," she advised them.

While most of the hour-long lunch dealt with Ms. Finney's job as a school board member, the discussion ranged from favorite bubble gums to the importance of reading.

The students invited Ms. Finney to the school to show off a bulletin board they had created to recognize parent participation in school. The board had been inspired by Ms. Finney, who spoke to the school in August and urged more recognition of parental involvement.

The students seemed impressed by what Ms. Finney told them yesterday, and said they were anxious to attend a school board meeting.

"I think it would be so much fun. I'd like to go for hours and hours," Darin McFadden said.

Ms. Finney was also impressed. "It was so inspiring to see such brightness," she said.

And there was a little bit of politicking as well.

As Ms. Finney was enjoying her lunch of sandwiches, salads, and cake, the students had a favor to ask.

"Could we get an extra day off before Christmas?" Darin McFadden asked.

Ms. Finney said the board would think about it.

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