The Prince George’s County District 7 school board race pits an incumbent against three challengers.
Henry P. Jr. Armwood, who was elected to the board 15 months ago, is facing Carletta Fellows, Lykisha Perkins and John E. Richardson.
The top two vote-getters in the nonpartisan primary will advance to the November general election.
Also on the ballot is Lydia Walker Thompson who suspended her campaign.
Armwood, 61, a retiree and former parent liaison, said he wants to return to the board because the system needs stability. He also wants to help change perceptions of the system. Armwood said he supports Superintendent William R. Hite Jr.’s vision for the system.
If elected, he wants to bring middle-school sports and activities back, possibly using community partnerships. The programs were cut because of budgetary constraints.
He said he wants to regain trust among parents, which should increase parental involvement.
Fellows, 42, of Upper Marlboro, who does educational programming for a foundation for foster children, said she entered the race not only because of her concerns about the system’s academic needs, but its financial needs as well.
She wants to streamline the budget and make it more transparent and user-friendly. Fellows suggests creating an “education authority,” which would have ability to raise funds for the school system. And she wants to appropriate funding to modernize school facilities.
Perkins could not be reached for comment.
Richardson, 47, of Forestville, a Prince George’s County substitute teacher, said he would like build on the work he has done in his community to help move the school system forward.
“We can do better as a school system,” he said, referring to the system’s ranking in the state. Richardson said he seeks to improve staff morale. “I understand what the staff is experiencing,” Richardson said, noting pay freezes and layoffs. “We have to do what we must to keep our highly qualified teachers.”