A Message from Board President Durso and Superintendent Smith
Welcome to the New School Year!
Dear MCPS Families:
Happy first day of school! We are excited to have your child as one of the more than 159,000 students who will begin the 2016–2017 school year with us at Montgomery County Public Schools. We hope our students are as eager to be back as we are to have them back!
Over the last weeks and months, MCPS staff members have been working diligently to prepare our 204 schools across the county for the students’ return. Thousands of lesson plans have been drafted; 25 million square feet of flooring has been cleaned; and four new construction projects have been completed, including the new Hallie Wells Middle School.
As we begin this journey in the new school year, our time, energy, and resources will be focused on student learning. Our goal is to maintain the high levels of student achievement that our school system is known for, and at the same time lift up those students who are not performing as well, so that all students, regardless of race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, language, or disability can meet and exceed their potential.
Ensuring that each and every one of our students learn is not just the core mission of Montgomery County Public Schools, it is a moral imperative. The future of our county and country depends on it. Every teacher, administrator, support professional, and Board of Education member is committed to this mission and to the success of ALL of our students.
Student success requires three key elements — science, art, and heart. The science is applying research about the mind and brain, and how we learn. It’s about using data at the classroom, school building, and district level to assess and improve student learning. The art is what happens in the classroom. It’s the instruction; like conducting an orchestra. It is the ability of teachers and other staff to inspire students to perform their best, and to help those who are falling behind or find themselves out of sync. And the heart is about relationships, the ones we build so that everyone feels safe, welcome, and respected in their school community. These three elements — the science, art, and heart of learning — together, are essential to student achievement.
We look forward to another amazing year at MCPS.
Michael A. Durso
President, Board of Education
Jack R. Smith, Ph.D.
Superintendent of Schools