Brunswick High School junior Mia Martinez will be a senior by the time she begins her term as the next student member to the Board of Education of Frederick County, July 1. Until then she will shadow the Board’s current student member, Malachi Macon.
Frederick County middle and high school students participated in an online voting process to elect the 2020-2021 student Board member. This was the ninth year the student member was elected by online voting. Mia received the most votes, running against six other candidates, five of whom were selected to move on to the general election.
In addition to an application that the Frederick County Association of Student Councils (FCASC) Executive Board and Student Government Association (SGA) advisors reviewed, each candidate answered questions on January 16 in a Town Hall format that FCPS televised and posted online. Each also submitted a one-page online platform statement.
Middle and high school students participated in online voting from January 17-February 7 to determine which candidate the schools’ SGA representatives would support in the General Assembly on February 20. Student enrollment determines a school’s number of representative delegates. When Mia won the FCASC General Assembly election, the Assembly submitted her name for approval to the Frederick County Public Schools Superintendent to serve a year-long term, beginning in July 2020.
The role of the student member of the Board (SMOB) is to bring a student viewpoint on educational issues to BOE meetings. The function is not to represent any particular special-interest group of students on an issue but rather to respect the diversity of students’ points of view, to improve communication between the student body, staff and BOE members, and to inform students of policies and decisions executed by the BOE.
In her platform, Mia wrote that she believes it’s important for the BOE to consider policies regarding educational equity and to promote student health and wellness.
“The first step to focusing on excellence for each student in every school,” she wrote, “is to give them the control they deserve to succeed in their educational path. It is too often that our students are being defined by numbers and standardized testing.”
Active in the Maryland Association of Student Councils, Mia is also her school’s junior class president and a National Arts Society member. She earned a Maryland Art Education Association Emerging Artists Exhibit Award in 2011, a National History Day junior group website award in 2017 and a Young Authors Contest award for poetry in 2017. She also served as a panelist in the coalition for the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future in 2019. Mia is enrolled in several Advanced Placement courses and helps tutor elementary and middle school students at the Menocal Family Practice, where she also assists with reception work.
For additional information about the SMOB role and election process, please contact FCPS Social Studies Curriculum Specialist Colleen Bernard, 301-644-5265 or Colleen.Bernard@fcps.org. To see Mia’s full platform and additional information, please visit: http://www.fcps.org/boe/smob-nominees.