Artman

Andrea Artman is running for a seat on the Frederick County Board of Education.

Andrea Artman doesn’t have a background in education. She has a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in bioengineering and has worked in various governmental regulatory jobs. Today, she owns her own consulting business in Frederick and has two children in the Frederick County Public School system.

Artman understands that to some, her lack of knowledge of education-specific policy may be a weakness, but she sees it as an invaluable strength she can bring to the Board of Education, especially when faced with issues that require strategic thinking and problem-solving.

“I am not entrenched in how education has always been done,” Artman said. “Being able to problem solve in areas that aren’t traditionally education takes a non-education person to make it happen.”

If elected, Artman said one of her focuses as a board member will be equity and making sure students have equal access to opportunities and that resources are spread across the school system evenly.

“I’m very impressed by the amount of opportunities we have, from our tech to internships, but I think equality in those programs is really important, we seem to centralize them in certain schools,” Artman said. “I know [programs] are open to the whole system but that doesn’t necessarily mean that kids from every area are getting into those programs or can make it work.”

Teacher pay and retention are also top issues for Artman as well as a desire to re-include communities in schools and show those who aren’t as tapped in, what an investment in education can do.

“As you pull further and further away from your community...I think it kind of disenfranchises [them] away from the education system and then when you need taxes or fees to improve our schools, they’re like why?” Artman said.

Residents need to understand why the money is needed and what it is going to do for them, Artman said and added that even though no one likes to taxes, at the end of the day, that’s how things are funded.

As a board member, Artman said she would work to make sure that the funding FCPS does receive is going towards needs and not wants.

“We need to concentrate on having the people and the infrastructure to actually educate our students,” Artman said. “I think a lot of times we concentrate on the next gadget or the next building but overall, our job is to educate our youth and to make them feel safe and welcomed.”

She also wants to see improvement in how FCPS handles enrollment growth, starting with better enrollment projections.

“They’re building four- or five-bedroom houses and they’re saying one student is going to come out of each house...when I’m buying a house that has that many rooms it’s probably because I’m planning on having a family,” Artman said.

She feels the school system needs to have better relationships with developers in order to plan better.

“It seems we don’t necessarily have control over when the development happens and how quickly it happens ... so really building relationships with the developers to get more real-time information,” Artman said.

She would also like to see a change in how enrollment numbers are used in the budgeting process. Currently, budgeting is based on enrollment numbers from the beginning of each school year.

“I would like to see that happen more than once a year... so you can make sure that your funding numbers make sense,” Artman said.

She hopes to tackle this and other issues if elected to the Board as a way to give back to the community she lives and works in.

Owning her own business will allow her flexibility with time she says and will allow her to devote what is needed to the role.

Overall, she hopes people vote for her because of the different perspectives and lines of thinking she can bring.

“I provide ... a different lens on the public education spectrum,” Artman said. “My focus is community and inclusion and ensuring that all students benefit from the work that is done.”

Follow Katryna Perera on Twitter: @katrynajill

(39) comments

mrnatural1

The fact that Ms. Artman has replied here in the comment section 3 times scores her more points in my book.

As with most of the other candidates, Ms. Artman is clearly qualified, but the fact that she has been willing to reply -- particularly to people who can come across as confrontational -- is another reason why she got my vote, and my wife's as well.

I wish more county officials and employees would contribute to the FNP comment section.

JaneFlower241

I am a bit of an idealist, I suppose. 💁‍♀️

mrnatural1

Quote from the article:

"She also wants to see improvement in how FCPS handles enrollment growth, starting with better enrollment projections.

“They’re building four- or five-bedroom houses and they’re saying one student is going to come out of each house...when I’m buying a house that has that many rooms it’s probably because I’m planning on having a family,” Artman said.

She feels the school system needs to have better relationships with developers in order to plan better.

“It seems we don’t necessarily have control over when the development happens and how quickly it happens ... so really building relationships with the developers to get more real-time information,” Artman said."

~

If I am interpreting this correctly, Artman is saying that there has been too much development -- or at least that it happened too quickly for FCPS to keep up.

If so, I agree 100%. Because of the rampant, avarice-fueled residential sprawl, FredCo children are forced into larger and larger classes, in overcrowded schools, and many have to attend class in "portables" (trailers) that are much less secure than an actual school building.

Existing impact fees do not begin to cover the true cost of growth, which is why our taxes continue to increase, and our quality of life continues it's downward spiral.

Development should be significantly reduced, and impact fees raised enough to actually cover costs.

mrnatural1

On May 26, 2020 @ 12:22pm, Artman4BOE wrote:

~

"Of course! "Opportunity to thrive in life" is different for each individual. I believe education provides the building blocks that will be utilized for a lifetime. Education is a way to engage the mind and expand the experiences of people beyond what they see in everyday life. Therefore, providing them with large frames of reference for what is available from a career spectrum is extremely important. I would like to see our youth have many opportunities and options available to them including our current programs at CTC and LYNX as well as robust programs that will prepare them for University. I would work to provide students the opportunity to engage in multiple areas of interest so they are able to make the best choices for their lives.

"Furthering Educational Opportunities" is similar to what I've described above. I would like to see the expansion of our programs to reach more students that may not be able to commute to the current locations of our specialized programs. However, as with all expansion, we need to ensure we are completing it in a fiscally responsible way, and making the most impact for the County as a whole. I support alternate education avenues such as charter schools, educational choice, and homeschooling because again, each child deserves an education that works for them and supports them in their educational development."

~

The above sounds good, with the exception of the last sentence.

Although my wife and I chose not to have kids, we fully support the FCPS. We do not mind paying tens of thousands of dollars over the years to support our public school system, but we are adamantly opposed to any of that money being spent to support anything other than our public schools. If some parents feel our schools they are not good enough for their children, they can spend their own money to fund the alternative.

It is very self-centered and shortsighted for people to claim that they deserve to be given tax dollars because they do not have kids in FCPS. Guess what? Neither do many of us. What would happen if everyone without children in school demanded a refund of the ~50% of their property taxes that go to FCPS?

Charter schools siphon money from our *public* school system; and do not always produce good results. Some are little more than publicly funded private schools. Asking taxpayers to fund them is over the line.

JaneFlower241

Just curious? Do you think that someone who has no experience practicing medicine should be in charge of making decisions about your loved ones medical care? Would you trust someone with no training or experience in financial planning with your life savings and investments? It is way past time the education professionals receive the same respect and regard the experts in other fields! Seek the experts to make decisions about THEIR FIELD! They are out there! With advanced degrees, specializations, and years of experience.

This would almost be funny if it weren’t so truly sad. How disrespectful and arrogant!

gabrielshorn2013

Your comparison would be valid if she was teaching students directly. She is not. For a more appropriate comparison, how many hospital Board of Directors are physicians? Yet, they make policy on how the facility is run, right? I see Ms. Artman as a viable candidate, who may offer some "out of the box" thinking.

mrnatural1

Very good point gabriel. She has my vote, and my wife's as well. [thumbup][thumbup]

Blueline

The head of Frederick Memorial Hospital is not a Doctor.

mrnatural1

Jane,

Comments can often be taken different ways. In this case my take is that Andrea is simply saying that she would offer a different perspective. There is nothing wrong with that. She is intelligent and would be an asset to the BoE.

There are probably thousands of parents (who are not teachers) serving on school boards across the country. Are they "disrespectful and arrogant"? Should they all resign?

JaneFlower241

It’s beneficial to have individuals from all walks of life and backgrounds on a board - absolutely. No argument there. However, if you look at public education from a broad, systemic level you will find that decision-making bodies that drive policy tend to have very few individuals with recent, relevant, or practical experience in public education. (If you want an example, take a look at the recommendations the CDC is giving about reopening schools. Anyone who has lead or even been inside a school recently will tell you that they are laughable!)

My point is, there are people who have advanced degrees in areas like educational leadership, organizational leadership, children’s mental health, curriculum, school budgeting/finance,etc. AND practical experience actually working in school systems. In my opinion, they should be leading the charge while consulting with experts in other areas as needed. I simply don’t see that this is the case. Parents tend to think that because they have children in school (and they pay taxes) they have a right to dictate and control every decision that is made. They have a stake - absolutely!!! But the vast majority are not experts. And I wish they were more respect for that. I actually think that the way some charter/privates schools function with a board of trustees model can actually work well done correctly.

Honestly it’s not surprising though. As a society, we don’t respect expertise anymore. Everyone with the internet knows best - about school, vaccines, you name it. I believe it’s still possible to challenge the status quo while relying on expertise and research.

gabrielshorn2013

While your point is true in an idealistic way, is there anyone with those characteristics running for BoE? If so, who? We have to chose the best candidates from those that are volunteering their time and credentials. We must also be wary of falling into the logical fallacy of deferring to authority.

threecents

For me her mistake was saying that lack of experience could be an asset.

Artman4BOE

Hi Threecents - For clarification, I believe that my minimal experience in education policy is an asset because direct experience in the subject matter can create stagnation when moving forward with new initiatives and new ways of thinking. I do believe that my experience in regulation, policy, strategic problem solving, business development, and budgets are an asset to the BOE and are fully translatable to the work of education.

threecents

Thanks very much for responding to posts. If you don't win, it is only because you are one of a number of excellent candidates that we are lucky to have.

mrnatural1

Well said Andrea.

gary4books

I can like this candidate. Not a lot of partisan concept or preformed ideas. I like one to wait and see what the problems are when they start. Not even a lecture on "phonic" here. That is refreshing.

Blueline

Not speaking specifically to any particular candidate, but I believe the BOE would benefit from some members with management capabilities. Educational experience is important and a vital part of the Board, but so too is the ability have a functional system. If the focus is solely from an academia perspective, we often get something like what the Kirwan Commission produced - an unsustainable, unaccountable plan which throws tons of money down a black hole, and we ultimately end up in the same place where we started.

public-tertiary

[thumbup]

gary4books

People with "management capabilities" should be able to monitor programs, measure progress, and know when spending is good or not and change it to make progress. People who can do that are not likely to "end up in the same place." These positions are important and the best people should fill them.

girlpolitic

Interesting work history: 5 jobs in 10 years. BoE is a 4 year commitment, hmmm....

https://www.f6s.com/andreapilonartmanmsasqcqe

public-tertiary

Thank you for pointing out that multiple employers regarded her skill set so highly that they were willing to make her offers that she found hard to refuse.

gary4books

[thumbup][thumbup]

dancing donna

Would like her to expand what she means RE the statement "that all students benefits from the work that is done". What work? The writer should have asked for more details esp. since she does not have a background in education. I support the teacher retention. It is NOT good for KIDS when teachers disappear or to have have 4 principles in 6 years. Kids need consistency. Look at Mr. Rodgers for example: same shoes, same sweater, same song every single morning. Kids find comfort and security in consistency. Yes, teachers retire. move, or perhaps get fired, but for the most part, they should be developing a strong team of staff and faculty year after year. Kids would also benefit having the same teacher, every school grade, in Elementary school. It is a huge change for students, teachers, and parents to pack up and move every year to a new room and teacher. Teachers learn daily about their students strengths and weaknesses too. The downside of this is If the teacher is not the best for the student. I would like to hear more about how she plans to incorporate her past experience into this new one, specifically to benefit the students. They are too many times teachers are pulled out of class for meetings during the school day. There is too much bureaucracy and as a result students needs are not always priority. First, the class size has to change. It is impossible to step out of the current teaching model when there is 28 students in 1 class. I think the majority of teachers are doing an excellent job. They are doing it for the kids bc they love them and love to teach. We have had great experiences with Frederick Co. teachers (Elementary school). If place of some of the meeting, send summary reports for the teachers to review or even video the person speaking and send out. They can download and listen when commuting. Some meetings most be in person as they are running a big business clearly. The teachers give 110% of their energy to the students. Pulling the teachers in many directions takes away from the focus and energy necessary for their students. To many young students, their teacher is like a parent. A safe place. Perhaps, at times, better than home. (I am referring to kids who are living in an abusive home). Teaching is not a job. It is a LIFE calling. No different than a pastor, priest, doctor, or midwife. It is not and never will be a 40 hr. wk. job. Less students per class which would mean hiring more teachers and increasing the school budget. Thinking outside the box and teaching classes like NUTRITION, Social Skills, Team building, Health class that includes how the body works, including Mental/emotional health 101 on a kid level. Kids are curious and math, writing, and reading are essential. There is so much more we could be doing. These life skill classes are even more essential in today's time of childhood depression, self harm, bullying, fractured home life, and the abundance of medications now given to kids to suppress the above. If a child does not have the skills to cooperate with others, solve problems individually and in a group, handle stress in a healthy ways, show healthy emotions and communicate clearly and respectively then what is the point on winning a spelling B or having great math skills?

girlpolitic

No thanks, I'll pass on this candidate. "Thewheelone" summed up the candidate previously. Been here for 3 years and know wants to share the vast knowledge she has amassed. "All fluff and no stuff."

TomWheatley

Just curious how many voters already put their ballot in the mail by now? I was going to use the drop off box at the Talley Center, but it was nowhere to be found. Probably inside the now closed until further notice County building ...

Thewheelone

I wonder what hidden agenda is at hand when a person without a background in education decides to run for the board of education. I am not disqualifying a person with a business background, but simply having kids in a school system does not mean one has the expertise to be on a school board.

bosco

I thought everyone was an expert on education, especially politicians. (sarcasm alert)

Nancy Day

Perhaps among your crowd of virus and health experts. Not sarcasm alert.

bosco

Yawn. [yawn]

Nancy Day

Excellent points, Wheel. And legitimate questions for the candidate to answer.

Artman4BOE

Thank you for your question. While my career did not lead me into the field of education, I am very passionate about education and believe that providing youth with the opportunity to thrive in life through a sound education is important. The only agenda I have in running for school board is furthering the educational opportunities for our community. I believe looking at topics from multiple angles is essential for solving large problems and this is why I believe my background would be an asset to the BOE. You've focused on the business aspect of my background, which is important; however, I've also been engaged in the interpretation, implementation, and execution of governmental policy which would be translatable to this position. In addition, my background in lean process development to ensure resources are utilized in the most effective way would be an asset to the BOE. Ultimately, I want to give back to the amazing community I live in, and I believe that education is an essential element of a strong community foundation.

procommunity

You are spot-on, one does not need a background in education to sit on the board! I want someone who is smart and understands problem-solving! The best predictor for a successfully employee (based on research) is intelligence! a simple google search of highest intellect amongst all professions has Engineers at #1! My point, YOU HAVE MY VOTE! Women engineers make up only 20% of all engineers, you must be one smart lady! Your plans are sound and it would be great to have someone who is not an educator!

jayel86

You must be an engineer!

procommunity

No, I am not an engineer, I am a Statistician.

duffy5x

Really? That's your criteria? No wonder trump is is squatting in the WH.

Thewheelone

Artman4BOE, what does the "opportunity to thrive in life" look like? What would "furthering educational opportunities for our community" look like? More charter schools? Public funds for private education? Please elaborate if you would.

Artman4BOE

Of course! "Opportunity to thrive in life" is different for each individual. I believe education provides the building blocks that will be utilized for a lifetime. Education is a way to engage the mind and expand the experiences of people beyond what they see in everyday life. Therefore, providing them with large frames of reference for what is available from a career spectrum is extremely important. I would like to see our youth have many opportunities and options available to them including our current programs at CTC and LYNX as well as robust programs that will prepare them for University. I would work to provide students the opportunity to engage in multiple areas of interest so they are able to make the best choices for their lives.

"Furthering Educational Opportunities" is similar to what I've described above. I would like to see the expansion of our programs to reach more students that may not be able to commute to the current locations of our specialized programs. However, as with all expansion, we need to ensure we are completing it in a fiscally responsible way, and making the most impact for the County as a whole. I support alternate education avenues such as charter schools, educational choice, and homeschooling because again, each child deserves an education that works for them and supports them in their educational development.

Thewheelone

Thanks for your answer but I do not see a lot of innovation in your response. Go study the demographics of the county, look into the impact that cultural differences, poverty, homelessness and mental health issues have on a kids' education and try again. Perhaps then you can apply your knowledge of fiscal responsibilities to which a huge organization can adhere to better use the money allocated for public school kids. By the way, public education was not meant to support "educational choice and homeschooling;" it is meant to support the development and enhance the opportunities for each student that actually attends a public school.

duffy5x

The last thing the BOE needs is a dilettante.

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