Middle and high school students from across Baltimore County have selected Perry Hall High School junior Roah Hassan to serve as the student member of the Board of Education of Baltimore County (SMOB) for the 2022-2023 school year. Hassan’s one-year term begins July 1, 2022.
A record number of 13,169 students cast online ballots on Thursday, March 17. The number of votes cast this year is 61.55 percent more than in 2020 when the previous record of 8,152 votes were cast. Hassan received 54.98 percent of the votes compared to 45.02 percent for the other candidate, Masah Farh, a junior at Towson High School. This is the third year that all BCPS middle and high school students could select the student member of the board and the second year, due to a change in Maryland law, that the student selection no longer needs approval from the governor.
Prior to voting, students were able to learn more about both candidates by viewing their resumes, video Q&A sessions, videotaped speeches, and campaigning via social media. The candidates also hosted virtual visits with schools that requested them.
In her speech, Hassan said, “Being the SMOB means never losing faith in the power of the students. It is to have hope, unfaltering empathy, and compassion as we make necessary decisions. Until our systems reflect every single student in BCPS, there will always be work to be done, work that I am prepared to fight for. As your student member of the board, I will work to close the opportunity gap and guarantee equitable funding across the county. I will work to redistribute 21st century resources within BCPS. I will work to rewrite a curriculum that evolves with us and addresses social inequities from the root. I will ensure that student mental health is at the forefront of our conversations and that students of color and LGBTQ+ students feel safe in their schools. We deserve educational justice and a fight that ensures your voice is equally as powerful as mine on the BCPS Board of Education.”
Hassan is president of the Perry Hall Class of 2023 Senate. At her school, she is also vice president of Girls Up, events coordinator of the Muslim Student Association, historian of the Rotary Interact Club, and secretary of Mock Trial. Hassan tutors and mentors Perry Hall AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) sophomores. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, and Social Studies Honor Society. At the county level, she is the co-legislative affairs coordinator for Baltimore County Student Councils. At the state level, she is vice chair of the Maryland High School Democrats’ Women’s Caucus, co-founder/co-executive director of Mic Up, Maryland!, and legislative coordinator of the Maryland Center for School Safety Student Focus Group.
Hassan will replace Christian Thomas, a senior at Eastern Technical High School, who will graduate in June.