School Notes: County Executive, MCPS Leaders Kick-Off Suicide and Drug Abuse Prevention Campaign

Plus: Montgomery College seeks candidates for trustees board; council candidate to hold schools forum

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County Executive Ike Leggett

VIA MONTGOMERY COUNTY GOVERNMENT

Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett, county officials and education leaders this week introduced a new campaign geared toward preventing teen suicide and substance abuse.

The “BTheOne” campaign will spread awareness through its website, by advertising on bus shelters and movie theaters, and with posters and fliers, a press release stated. The information also will go out to the county’s 67 public middle and high schools.

Leggett, officials from the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services and officials from Montgomery County Public Schools kicked off the campaign on Thursday, accompanied by parent Susan Rosenstock, whose teenage son died by suicide.

Evan Rosenstock, a varsity basketball player at Winston Churchill High School in Potomac, took his own life in 2013.

“It is imperative that we use this new campaign to show everyone where they can get help,” Rosenstock said in a press release. “Once someone is identified as being at risk, they should know where to turn next.”

August Balderson, a 19-year-old Gaithersburg resident recovering from substance abuse, also helped launch the effort.

The campaign urges people to “BTheOne” to help those who might be at risk of committing suicide or doing drugs. The first step is asking someone if he or she is thinking about suicide or abusing substances, according to the site. People should call 911 to keep a friend from danger and make sure to listen without passing judgment, the campaign advises.

The BTheOne website points people toward more services and resources for suicide and drug abuse prevention.

“As a parent and a grandparent, I know that teens today face many pressures—to do well in school, to fit in socially, to figure out what they want to do when they ‘grow up,’” Leggett said in a prepared statement. “We want teens and their friends, families and other adults in their lives to know that help is available.”

College accepting applications for board of trustees openings

Montgomery College is looking to fill two upcoming vacancies on its board of trustees.

The board’s nominating committee is seeking applicants for the seats, which will open up when the terms for board members Michael Knapp and Benjamin Wu expire next year. The six-year terms will begin July 1, 2018.

The Maryland governor appoints college trustees upon the recommendation of the nominating committee, according to a college press release. The 11-person board acts as a governing body for the college, which serves more than 60,000 students on three campuses.

Anyone interested in the post has until Oct. 26 to send a letter of intent, a résumé and any other supporting documents to Henry Hailstock, the chairman of the nominating committee, at hhailstock@gmail.com.

Education forum to address upcounty student performance

A county council candidate is holding a town hall meeting Saturday about how Montgomery County Public Schools stack up to other schools across the nation.

Republican Ed Amatetti, who is running for the District 2 council seat, is inviting residents of Germantown, Damascus, Clarksburg and Montgomery Village to the forum on education. The event is scheduled to run from 3:30 to 5 p.m. at Hallie Wells Middle School in Clarksburg, according to a flier.

The forum will cover issues like education reform and performance data for MCPS, the state and upcounty schools.

Bethany Rodgers can be reached at bethany.rodgers@bethesdamagazine.com.

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