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Respond to concerns raised about the ability of the Blair High School registrar position to manage the required workload. What other resources are available at the school to support the registrar? Should additional resources be added considering that Blair High School has 24 feeder middle schools, a high mobility rate, and many students that are from families that have never been involved in the college application process? Provide an update of the information provided last year at this time (Question/Answer 49) regarding the workload associated with transcripts and college applications. Provide a chart showing the number and types of support positions for each high school.

Question#: 5

BUDGET PAGE REFERENCE: Chapter 1-18

ANSWER:

I. The request for an additional registrar at Montgomery Blair High School is based on the amount of work assigned to the registrar, including college transcript submissions.  The request for an additional registrar at Montgomery Blair High School was addressed last year at this time in a response to the Board of Education and in a letter to the Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA) representatives. These responses are attached for reference.  Key points described in these responses on why Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) has not allocated an additional position are outlined below.   The information below has been updated and additional information is provided. 

  • The work related to college transcript submission is not the sole responsibility of the registrar.    Each high school has several positions allocated to use to support this work.  It is the schools responsibility to distribute the workload appropriately.  Positions that can support and complete this work include the college/career information coordinator (CIC), the registrar, the counseling secretary, and other secretarial positions. [In fact the CIC job description states that the role of the CIC is to “assist students in all aspects of the college planning process including the application process…”] In addition, all high schools are allocated funds to hire temporary part-time support to assist with tasks during the busier times of the year. Twelve high schools with the largest enrollments and largest number of college applications submitted were contacted last year to determine how they manage the application workload, summer programs, and scholarships. It was revealed that schools use an array of resources to divide the workload based on the needs of the school. Some schools assign the work of college transcript submission to the CIC with no assistance from the registrar. In other schools, the work is assigned to a secretary, while other schools divide the task between the positions.  In addition, other schools have assigned secretarial support to their registrar. Montgomery Blair High School has these options and can divide the workload among staff as other schools have done. Despite suggestions to distribute this work, Montgomery Blair High School has chosen not to do so.  

The following table outlines support staff positions allocated to high schools.  It does not include building services, food services, or technology positions.  It also does not include special program positions for ESOL, special education, and ROTC.  As noted, these positions are allocated to schools to support their programs.  It is expected that schools distribute the workload according to the position job descriptions and the needs of the school. 

School

Enrollment

Secretary I
10 months

Financial Specialist

Secretary II
10 months

Secretary II
12 months

Registrar

Administrative
Secretary

Total Clerical-level

Security

Paraeducator
10 months

Media Assistant

English Assistant Composition

CIC

Total Instructional – level
(does not include security)

Total

Montgomery Blair

2,790

4

1

2

2

1

1

11

9

3.13

2.5

3

1

9.63

29.625

Thomas S. Wootton

2,259

4

1

2

1

1

1

10

5

2.5

2.5

2.375

1

8.375

23.375

Walter Johnson

2,237

4

1

2

1

1

1

10

5

2.63

2.5

2.5

1

8.63

23.625

Richard Montgomery

2,166

3

1

1

2

1

1

9

5.5

2.38

2

2.375

1

7.755

22.25

Winston Churchill

2,093

3

1

2

1

1

1

9

5

2.25

2

2.25

1

7.5

21.5

Gaithersburg

2,081

3

1

2

1

1

1

9

6

2.25

2

2.25

1

7.5

22.5

Northwest

2,011

3

1

2

1

1

1

9

6

2.25

2

2.25

1

7.5

22.5

Sherwood

1,980

3

1

2

1

1

1

9

5

2.25

2

2.125

1

7.375

21.375

Clarksburg

1,959

3

1

2

1

1

1

9

6

2.25

2

2.125

1

7.375

22.375

Paint Branch

1,947

3

1

1

1

1

1

8

6

2.13

2

2

1

7.13

21.125

Walt Whitman

1,921

3

1

2

1

1

1

9

4

2.13

2

2.125

1

7.255

20.25

Quince Orchard

1,878

3

1

1

1

1

1

8

6

2.13

2

2

1

7.13

21.125

BCC

1,872

3

1

1

1

1

1

8

5

2.13

2

2

1

7.13

20.125

Springbrook

1,749

3

1

1

1

1

1

8

6

1.88

2

1.75

1

6.63

20.625

James Hubert Blake

1,694

3

1

1

1

1

1

8

6

1.88

2

1.875

1

6.755

20.75

Albert Einstein

1,651

3

1

1

1

1

1

8

6

1.75

1.5

1.625

1

5.875

19.875

Col. Zadok Magruder

1,595

3

1

1

1

1

1

8

6

1.88

2

1.75

1

6.63

20.625

John F. Kennedy

1,581

3

1

1

1

1

1

8

6

1.88

1.5

1.75

1

6.13

20.125

Northwood

1,497

2

1

1

1

1

1

7

5.5

1.63

1.5

1.625

1

5.755

18.25

Watkins Mill

1,449

2

1

1

1

1

1

7

6

1.63

1.5

1.5

1

5.63

18.625

Wheaton

1,336

1.5

1

1

1

1

1

6.5

5

1.38

1

1.375

1

4.755

16.25

Rockville

1,305

1.5

1

1

1

1

1

6.5

4

1.38

1

1.375

1

4.755

15.25

Seneca Valley

1,275

2

1

1

1

1

1

7

5

1.5

1

1.375

1

4.875

16.875

Damascus

1,231

2

1

1

1

1

1

7

5

1.38

1

1.375

1

4.755

16.75

Poolesville

1,202

0.5

1

1

2

1

1

6.5

3

1.38

1

1.25

1

4.63

14.125

As noted, workload for college applications and document handling is distributed to registrars, secretaries, and the career-college coordinator.  In addition, schools are allocated temporary part time funds to use during busy times.  Many schools use these funds to support their guidance office during registration and college application season.  The funds are allocated as follows:

Projected Enrollment

Allocation

< 1400

$2,225

1400–1799

$2,450

1800–2199

$2,675

2200–2599

$2,900

2600 +

$3,125

In summary, the college application submission work as well as other paperwork can be split between staff.   In some schools, secretarial support is provided to the registrars during busy times of the year.  In the case of Montgomery Blair High School, in addition to the registrar and the CIC, the school has nine secretaries plus a fiscal specialist.  The secretaries are allocated to provide support for the main office and the counseling office. As with other schools, it is expected that the workload will be divided among the staff as needed. Secretaries, counseling staff, and registrars all have a role in the work of enrollment and record keeping. Also, during different times throughout the year, the work assignment may change based on workload.  Temporary part-time funds also are allocated to the school to hire additional support during busy times.  Many schools use these funds to support the counseling office. 

  • Although Montgomery Blair High School is the largest high school in MCPS, past data does not suggest that it has the most college applications submitted.  Data from last year revealed that as of January 1, 2013, five high schools had more total applications submitted.  Of the five high schools, two have significantly more applications submitted.  This data is incomplete as it was taken mid-year.  It does not include applications sent by U.S. mail or applications sent after January 1, 2014.  The data is provided below.

High School

Applications Submitted

Winston Churchill

3,606

Thomas S. Wootton

3,601

Bethesda-Chevy Chase

3,176

Walter Johnson

3,049

Walt Whitman

3,040

Montgomery Blair

2,932

For FY 2014, January 1 data reveals that three schools have submitted more applications.  As with last year, two of the schools have submitted significantly more applications. 


High School

Applications Submitted

Winston Churchill

4552

Thomas S. Wootton

4516

Walt Whitman

3883

Montgomery Blair

3789

  • Due to changes in technology, the work that was performed in the past by hand or required numerous steps has been reduced and has reduced the workload of registrars. Numerous upgrades in recent years have been implemented to streamline the work of registrars. These improvements have automated manual tasks and have enabled registrars to better manage students’ records.  They include the following:
  • Checking grade submissions has been redistributed to teachers and administrators with the implementation of the electronic gradebook. Teachers easily can see and correct issues before submitting their grades at the end of each marking period, which frees the registrar of this work.
  • Registrars have been given the ability to change grades of middle school students who are enrolled in high school classes and receive a grade at their school.
  • High schools have implemented the Naviance College Readiness System, which enables school staff to upload students’ transcripts to the students’ schools of choice. Naviance allows registrars to monitor the status of each application and reduces the need for the registrar to send college transcripts and applications via U.S. mail and reduces the need for follow-up phone calls to colleges.   Prior to Naviance each record was printed, copied, weighed, stamped and mailed.  This process was time-consuming.  The new system has reduced the time requirements significantly. 
  • Automating select Student Record (SR) cards, this was previously manually updated by registrars with student information at the end of each school year. School registrars had to print SR cards and send them via the Pony for students that transfer from one MCPS school to another. Now, updated student information is printed on the cards before they are distributed to schools. Work is ongoing to put all SR cards online, which will reduce the need for schools to manually update or distribute these cards. 
  • Retentions are done automatically through the system.  Prior to the improvement, retentions were completed by hand.
  • Central printing of attendance cards makes the need to print stickers that adhere to each card an obsolete task. 
  • Electronic updates of tests scores and other data preloaded into OASIS means schools do not need to keep and retain hard copies. 
  • Electronic transcripts means that schools do not need to keep and organize hard copies.  Prior to electronic copies registrars received hard copies of transcripts that were filled and each time the transcript was needed it was located and copied and then sent out.  Electronic copies means that the transcripts are at their fingertips and can be either emailed or printed and mailed. 


While some work has been streamlined due to technology, there is work to be done.  Registrars perform many record keeping tasks.  These tasks are completed with the use of technology but they are still time consuming.  While duties and responsibilities vary from school to school, the register performs the following. 

  • Grade corrections
  • Grade reconciliation for students who come from another district or incomplete semester
  • Grades for students receiving home and hospital instruction
  • Send HSA score reconciliation for students who come from other districts
  • Diploma orders
  • Transcript corrections
  • Schedule cards organization for the beginning of a semester
  • Preparation of records to be sent to Central Records for scanning and permanent retention (we are moving to doing this electronically but are not there yet).
  • Processing of no shows by the September 30 deadline (for MSDE)
  • Schedule corrections after 25th day
  • Coverage of counseling office and phone coverage when secretary is out; back-up phone coverage other days
  • Report Card distribution
  • Collecting documents and updating residency/re-distribution of returned mail
  • Updating student/family information
  • Student WDs/transfers and archiving of records; responding to requests from transfer school
  • Completing and signing forms for DJS, SSA, IRS, INS, Social Services, HOC, GED, etc.
  • Correction of all other forms of data in OASIS system; enroll/WD codes, OYG, etc
  • Monitoring of transcripts for off-site students under MCPS purview; private placements, OPTG, correctional facilities, MCPS special services & some Alt ED
  • College application process including sending of transcript/application packets
  • Updating and maintenance of Naviance database system (college/career database)
  • Respond to questions from parents, students, counselors, admin, teachers clarifying decisions and MCPS policies
  • Attend bi-monthly meetings to keep current on policy changes & best practices
  • Update departments on database deadlines/calendar items
  • Maintaining records room:
    • Daily filing of documents
    • Pickup and delivery of student files as needed
    • Keeping four years of files on WD students & responding to document requests
    • Keeping four years of graduate records and responding to document requests
    • Final reconciliation of graduate transcripts and permanent record cards to meet MSDE requirements
    • Yearly archiving of files to Central Records (done after four years are over)
    • Respond to audits for documents concerning residency, attendance, birth certificate, etc.

                                                                       
II.  The question as to whether additional resources should be added due to mobility rate, the school being part of the consortium and having many feeder schools, and having families involved in the college application process for the first time is address below. 

  • There are 14 schools with mobility rates greater than Blair’s mobility rate.  Mobility rate is always an important factor but is no more of a factor at Blair than at the other 14 schools that have higher rates.  Although student mobility creates work for staff because new students must be enrolled in the Down County Consortium (DCC) schools, the registration component is done centrally by the Division of Consortia Choice and Application Program Services (DCCAPS). For non-consortium schools, registration is performed at the school by the registrar or other assigned staff.  The mobility rate of high schools is shown below. 

School

      Mobility

Northwood

18.6

Watkins Mill

18.6

Wheaton

17.9

Seneca Valley

15.1

Gaithersburg

14.4

Kennedy

14.1

Springbrook

13.9

Blake

13

Eintstein

12.3

Clarksburg

11.5

Paint Branch

11.4

Rockville

11.3

Northwest

10.2

Richard Montgomery

10.1

Blair

9.7

Magruder

9.7

BCC

8.6

Quince Orchard

8.4

Walter Johnson

8.3

Whitman

8.3

Sherwood

7.8

Damascus

6

Wootton

5.1

Churchill

<5

Poolesville

<5

  • Having more feeder schools does create additional work because records come from many places.  But unlike non-consortium schools, registration of students is performed through the choice process at DCCAPS.  Two staff who register students are assigned to that office, a registrar and an enrollment assistant. Although the process may vary somewhat from school to school, the general process of registering DCC students is described below.
  • Students are assigned to school through the choice process. 
  • School receives a download of the students that are assigned to them.   The information flow happens electronically.  In prior years it was important that the students were both in SASI database and in OASIS.  So, registrars would be tasked with checking regularly.  Beginning  in FY 2014 with 21 schools (13 high schools) and continuing in FY 2015 with all the other schools this is no longer the case since MCPS will no longer use the SASI scheduling data and has integrated the scheduling into the OASIS system. 
  • New enrollees to the consortia attendance area are directed to contact DCCAPS to schedule an appointment to enroll the student. DCCAPS requests the general enrollment documents (residency, proof of identity, etc.) from the parents and upon acceptance of the documents presented for enrollment into MCPS, the students is enrolled, an ID is assigned, a school assignment folder is presented with copies of the enrollment documents, and the parent contacts the school to schedule a registration appointment.  This does not take any action of the local school registrar’s part. 
  • The student and parent present the school assignment folder to the school staff at the appointment, the student’s i.d. is activated in the system, and as necessary, documents reviewed.  The student meets with a counselor to begin the course registration process.
  • So, for non-consortium schools the registration (the collecting of the required document or the reassigning from one school to another) is done onsite by the registrar whereas in the DCC cases that work is done centrally by DCCAPS office which has a registrar.
  • The school registrar activates each student.   This means going into the system and taking the student from inactive to active. 
  • The registrar may need to send a request for records to the previous school.    When the records arrive, the forms are processed.  For students already in MCPS these forms are already in the system.  Schools with more mobility obviously have more students to register later in the process.    When a student moves out of a school the student’s hard copy records need to be sent to the new school.  This requires finding the records and sending them.  For the receiving school, the school contacts the previous school and requests the records to be sent.   Once received, the documents are filed.   For a student leaving, the registrar will print records before releasing the student electronically.   

Based on this process there is no evidence that being part of a consortium school is more work for registrars. 

Because DCCAPS completes the electronic part of the registration process, the work for the consortium registrar is less intensive than for non-consortium registrars. 

MCPS staff continues to work with all schools to ensure that each has the resources and knowledge to ensure all students achieve at the highest levels and are prepared to compete globally.  The college application process is an important one for our students.  Staff are committed to ensuring that every student is well served during this process.  Schools have numerous resources to perform the required duties and responsibilities.  Staff will continue to work with Blair High School to review their available resources and to identify how work can be distributed to ensure that our goals are met.  This includes continuing the work of having DCCAPS perform enrollment tasks for all students as well as looking at how current resource could be used to support the process.  If it is determined that the workload at Blair High School or other high schools exceed the resources made available, other resources will be provided to support the process and ensure all student needs are met. 

49. Provide information on how our large high schools are able to manage the workload associated with transcripts and college applications. How are registrar positions allocated? Is additional secretarial support needed in the registrar’s office?

Expand/Collapse Answer

Budget Page Reference:  1-19

Answer:

Registrar positions are allocated one per school.  The work related to college transcript submission is not the sole responsibility of the registrar.  Schools are allocated several positions that can support and complete this work including the career information coordinator (CIC), the registrar, the guidance secretary, and other secretarial positions. The career information coordinator job description clearly outlines that the role of the CIC is to “Assist students in all aspects of the college planning process including the application process.”   In addition, each high school is allocated funds to hire temporary part-time support to assist with tasks during the busier times of the year. 

Twelve schools with the largest enrollments and largest number of college applications submitted were contacted for how they manage the workload pertaining to the college application process.  It was revealed that schools use the array of resources provided to divide the workload based on the needs of the school.  Some schools assign the work of college transcript submission to the CIC with no assistance from the registrar.  In other schools, the work is assigned to a secretary, while other schools divided the task between the positions.  It is important to note that although Blair High School has the highest enrollment, it does not have the largest number of applications submitted.  In fact, as of January 1, 2013, based on the data from the Naviance system, five schools have more college application submissions completed.  Of the five schools, two have significantly more applications submitted.  The data is provided below.

School Name

Applications Submitted

Churchill

3,606

Wootton

3,601

BCC

3,176

Walter Johnson

3,049

Whitman

3,040

Blair

2,932


This data does not include some of the applications sent by hand.  A limited number of colleges and universities do not take electronic applications, therefore paper applications are sent by hand.  Consequently, the number of applications should increase by a small percentage to account for paper submissions. 

Similarly, for enrollment and record keeping tasks, schools assign workloads based on the time of the year.  In the case of Blair High School, in addition to the registrar and the CIC, the school has nine secretaries.  The secretaries are allocated to provide support for the main office and the guidance office.  As with other schools, it is expected that the workload will be divided among the staff as needed.  Secretaries, CICs, and registrars all have a roll in the work of enrollment, record keeping, and college application submissions.  Also, during different times throughout the year, the work assignment may change based on workload. 

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