2 Pasadena Residents Running For School Board In District 3


Pasadena residents Jamie Hurman-Cougnet and Erica McFarland announced this month that they are running for the Anne Arundel County Board of Education in District 3. An Anne Arundel County Public Schools sign is pictured above. (Jacob Baumgart/Patch)

PASADENA, MD - Two Pasadena residents are running for the Anne Arundel County Board of Education in District 3, state records show

The candidates, Jamie Hurman-Cougnet and Erica McFarland, both announced their election bids this month. 

The duo looks to replace incumbent Corine Frank, who has not yet announced if she will run for re-election. Frank was the sponsor of a recently failed flag ban proposal that would have prohibited all flags except for those supporting the nation, state, county, city or a bona fide educational purpose.

The Issues

Hurman-Cougnet and McFarland both told The Capital that they think the school board has become too politicized.

The Capital reported that Hurman-Cougnet is also concerned about school safety, saying her youngest son was struck by pellet gunfire at Northeast High School in March.

"The incident was the catalyst for me to want to be involved in the solutions to school safety and security," Hurman-Cougnet told The Capital, noting that her oldest son also went to Northeast. "Being involved directly in the issue and being solution-driven myself, I knew that I had to get even more involved."

McFarland has two children currently at Chesapeake High and another two who graduated from the school. 

McFarland wants to improve teacher salaries.

Last year's starting salary for Anne Arundel County Public Schools teachers was 19th out of 24 jurisdictions in Maryland. This year's starting salary for AACPS teachers is 4th in the state, the school system said.

Teacher salaries were raised by nearly $5,000 to $58,161 in Anne Arundel County's budget for Fiscal Year 2024, which started on July 1.

All AACPS units got an 8% pay increase. Substitutes also collected a raise of $5 per day, and special educators welcomed a $2,000 bonus.

"It is good that we are offering incentives for new teachers, but we need to make sure we are keeping the teachers we have," McFarland told The Capital.

Looking Ahead

All seven adult board seats are up for election in 2024. These elections are nonpartisan. Residents can see which district they live in using this tool.

If there are three or more school board candidates in a race, candidates will run in the May 14, 2024 primary election. All candidates will appear on all ballots, regardless of a voters' party or lack thereof. The top two vote-getters would then advance to the Nov. 5, 2024 General Election. 

If there are only one or two candidates in a district, the candidate(s) advance straight to the General Election.

District 5 incumbent Dana Schallheim is the only other candidate to announce their bid for 2024. 

The student member serves a one-year term and is replaced annually. 

Learn More

To learn more about Hurman-Cougnet, visit jhcfordistrict3.com or follow her on Facebook.

Head to ericamcfarland.com to read up on her. Voters can also follow McFarland on Facebook and Instagram.

To read Hurman-Cougnet's interview with The Capital, click here. McFarland's is posted at this link. These articles are only available to subscribers of The Capital.

Anybody with an Anne Arundel County Public Library card can read either story by searching the candidates' names at this link.

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