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Chenelly Seeks Seat on School Board

The Calvert County Board of Education (BOE) will have a new representative from the First Election District after the November General Election. The Bay Net recently met with one of the candidates, Joe R. Chenelly of Lusby. A native of Rochester, NY, Chenelly enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps when he was 21. He currently works as a communications specialist with the Disabled American Veterans. He also volunteers as a coach for several local youth athletic organizations. He and his wife Dawn have five children, ranging in age from three to 13. Prior to moving to Calvert County, the Chenellys lived in Virginia and Anne Arundel County.

TBN: Why did you decide to move to Calvert County?

Chenelly: We found Calvert County by accident and fell in love with it. The reason we came down here is the reputation the schools had. We were looking for a safe place to raise our children.

TBN: Why did you decide to run for school board?

Chenelly: We started seeing some things with the schools that we were concerned about. I did some research, went to some board of education meetings, talked to a lot of the teachers, some of the principals, a few administrators and a lot of parents, and heard a lot of the same concerns we had. They pointed out some other concerns as well. I started doing some research and found some of the general answers were ‘well, that’s the way things have always been done,’ things like that. I decided someone needed to challenge the status quo. Someone needed to reevaluate and refocus to ensure the schools are always doing what’s best for children first. I was hoping to see someone step up and do that. A few people asked me if I would consider running. My wife and I talked about the feasibility of me running and decided we could make it feasible because it was important enough. I filed in December and I’ve been working hard to listen and learn since then.

TBN: You mentioned safety as a priority and ‘bullying’ has been a big issue lately. What do you think the BOE should do to address the concerns regarding bullying?

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