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March 15, 2024

Yesterday's press conference from Worcester County has generated some confusion and anger over the words spoken, leading to a debate on transparency from the Worcester County Board of Education to the Worcester County Law Enforcement. 

Within Worcester County, Law Enforcement and the local Board of Education are dueling in a struggle that intertwines accountability, school safety, and privacy principles in a complex dance. 

On one hand, you have law enforcement, made up of Worcester County Sheriff Matt Crisafulli and Worcester County State's Attorney Kris Heiser, standing firm that schools are not safe and providing statistics and proof to support their stance.  

On the other hand, you have the Worcester County Board of Education, who have not really given parents or the community much confidence by withholding information and not being fully transparent with the information on incidents that are happening in the Worcester County Public School system.   

The Encryption Conundrum

Worcester County Sheriff Matt Crisafulli is at the center of a dilemma that many find perplexing, and for good reason. His stance on transparency and accountability in light of recently encrypting Worcester County radio frequencies strikes a chord with many, including myself, and leaves many scratching their heads in confusion. 

The sheriff is stating that the Board of Education needs to communicate better so the public is aware of what is going on, showing support of transparency.  However, when it comes to accessing his communication channels, and transparency from the Law Enforcement agencies in the area, the gates are firmly closed. It is contraversial and hypocritical statement to say the least. 

The School Board's Stand on Information Dissemination

Contrasting this encryption fiasco is the Worcester County Board of Education's recent decisions in their conflict with law enforcement and what should and needs to be reported, as well as safety in our schools.

The BOE's intent to shield itself from some public scrutiny and exclude Worcester County State's Attorney Kris Heiser from the discourse is gray and suspect at best. It raises pertinent questions about the motivations behind their actions and the optics of such a preventive approach, especially in light of the community's growing concern regarding incidents within school premises.

Heiser is an exemplar of trust and of the utmost integrity in her duties, as observed by those who've encountered her relentlessness in upholding justice.  Heiser, whom I've known for many years is a straight-forward type of person, who tells it how it is, like it or not. She is an individual with morals, a big heart and someone who truly cares about the community and doing what is right for everyone in the community!  I respect her 100% and more importantly, I trust her word without ANY reservations.  

Therefore, our stance of offering solid support for the State Attorney's endeavors and those who are on her side against the Board of Education is rooted in our trust in her and the assurance of her commitment to the welfare and justice of the public and, most importantly, to the safety of the students and staff of the public school system. 

Think about it, and ask yourself, "What does Heiser have to benefit by saying the school system is unsafe?". In most circumstances, I'd say probably 60-70% of the time, she doesn't play a role, as most kids in high school are juveniles, which is handled in Maryland by the juvenile justice system.  So what does Heiser have to benefit from this...... nothing. She simply wants to make sure our schools are safe because she sees what is happening and is doing the right thing! 

In Support of Justice, Not Office

The allegiance to law enforcement isn't to the position but to the principles. While one entity employs encryption to shield its operations from public view, the other seems poised to block crucial communication channels that could shed light on incidents within the community. 

The overlap of these narratives shines the light on a deeper realization - the public's trust is earned through the transparency and integrity of those who serve them, regardless of the positions they hold. Therefore, our stance is in favor of State's Attorney Kris Heiser, and against what appears to be maneuvers against public accountability is a stand on the credence that public service should be conducted with open hearts, open minds, and open channels of communication. 

It's about upholding the standard of duty with integrity and ensuring that the scales of transparency doesn't tip in favor of the powerful but in favor of those who seek justice, truth, and safety, as they roam through intertwined yet clearly distinguishable issues such as crime reporting and public safety in the context of education. The act of looking past the individuals in question- mainly Sheriff Crisafulli,-allows for the support of public trust and accountability, paving the way for a more resilient and engaged community in Worcester County, Maryland. 

I have stood firm in my beliefs that the public, armed with the truth and information, is a potent force. This synergy-between elected officials, law enforcement, Board of Education Administrators, and the average citizen-can, when harnessed effectively, lead to an equitable sharing of power and information, ensuring a brighter, more cohesive future for everyone involved. 

Together, we stand not for or against a particular individual but for the sanctity of the shared spaces, the schools that echo with the voices of our future, and the frequencies of our exchanges that, encrypted or not, must resonate with the tunes of responsibility and mutual growth, and most of all, for our schools safety.