Student Member of the Board

Junior Timothy Hwang of Thomas S. Wootton High School was a candidate for SMOB. Hwang moved from inner-city Lansing in Michigan, to Baltimore and finally to Montgomery County. Hwang was named one of the top 25 student leaders in the world by Bentley University and serves as the head of his own non-profit organization that manages over 200 employees and 500 volunteers worldwide.

The Student Member of the Board (SMOB) is a student elected position created for student representation on the Board of Education. The SMOB-elect represents student interests in board meetings and lobbies on their behalf.


What one quality of yours makes you especially prepared for the Student Member of the Board?

“I have a passion for the public education system. I believe in public education. I believe in the fact that every student should have equal opportunity to learn and become successful in their lives.But to do that, we need a strong public education system and we need engaged and passionate people who love the public education system to be running our schools.”

What problems do you see in the Montgomery County Public School system that you would aim to correct?

“The budget crisis right now is the biggest problem. We are in the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression and the effects of the collapses of our biggest financial institutions have left organizations, municipalities, and states strapped for cash. Sustainable Development (Eco-Friendly School System), Gangs/Guns/Violence in Schools, ESOL/Special Ed, GT Policy, Achievement Gap, Open Lunch, [and more] are also very big issues to tackle.”

Addressing the Issues

Supporting Eco-Friendly Schools:

  • Use “green” designs for new portable classrooms and schools
  • Calibrate thermostats in schools for efficient use of energy
  • Work with federal, state and local organizations to install new sources of energy

Making Student Life Easier:

  • Cut red tape in school – move systems online
  • Hire more counselors
  • Make it easier for students to drop, add and choose classes, and perhaps include a mandatory shopping period
  • Allow laptops in certain classes for lecture notes and computer literacy

Addressing the Achievment Gap:

  • Increase awareness and partnerships to continue arts and financial education programs
  • Create programs and job training for students to go to and get involved with community
  • Increase funding for elementary support (K-5 support) and improve middle school reform

-Hwang’s opponent, Richard Montgomery junior Jiayi Yang, failed to respond to repeated attempts for an interview.

 

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