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Howard board, superintendent in legal battle as they run county school system

The Baltimore Sun

April 24, 2017

 

A new majority took over the Howard County school board in December and passed sweeping measures to assert its authority over superintendent Renee Foose.

In response, she sued them.

Now the superintendent and school board are locked in a costly power struggle with dueling accusations and no lack of recrimination. The internal strife threatens to disrupt Maryland's sixth-largest school system, a district with 76 schools and 55,000 students that consistently ranks among the best in the nation.

"I've been very disappointed with the way that we're operating right now," said Kathryn McKinley, principal of River Hill High School. "It just seems to be dysfunctional."

The dispute escalated this month after the board dismantled Foose's scholarship program to send aspiring teachers from low-income families to McDaniel College. The Teachers for Tomorrow program was heralded as the first of its kind in the nation, an innovative approach to diversify the teaching corps in Howard County schools.

McDaniel President Roger Casey said he is consulting attorneys after the board backed out and abandoned the student finalists for 11 scholarships.

"We thought this was just atrocious. How could you possibly lead your students on?" Casey said. "They're basing these decisions about a battle that they have with the superintendent."

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