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MCPS Wins Award for Multilingual Communication

April 10, 2007
The following information was released by the American School Board Journal.


Montgomery County Public Schools wins Magna Award for multilingual communications program

American School Board Journal Announces 2007 Winners

Alexandria, Va. (April 4, 2007) ¬– Montgomery County Public Schools in Rockville, Md., has been selected as one of 18 winners in the American School Board Journal’s Magna Awards 2007 program.

The district’s “Multilingual Communications Program” is one of five winners in the over 20,000 student enrollment category in the 13th annual contest, presented with the support of Sodexho School Services. The program provides professional translation in multiple languages to enable the district to communicate essential information to its rapidly growing, linguistically diverse community.

Translators use a variety of media, working in Web publishing, print, and television to keep the diverse community informed. As a result of the program, the district’s increased its capacity to get important information to its multilingual population by 285 percent. Translations increase parents’ understanding of curriculum and instruction, student rights and responsibilities, summer school, and graduation requirements.

The Magna Awards, presented with the support of Sodexho School Services, recognize districts across the country for outstanding programs that advance student learning and encourage community involvement in schools. Grand prize winners, which receive $3,500 in scholarship money, are the Newark Central School District of Newark, N.Y., the Bremerton School District 100-C of Bremerton, Wash., and the Educational Service Center of Franklin County in Columbus, Ohio.

This year’s winners were selected based on three enrollment categories: less than 5,000 students, 5,000 to 20,000, and 20,000 and above. Houston has about 140,000 students.

“For 13 years, the Magna Awards have rewarded highly innovative thinkers in school districts who grapple with the complex challenges in public education on a daily basis,” said Marilee Rist, ASBJ’s publisher and assistant executive director of the National School Boards Association (NSBA). “This year’s entries showcase excellent examples of school boards, superintendents, and staff who’ve focused on the common threads of community, collaboration, and partnership to advance student learning.”

“The Magna Awards celebrate school districts that utilize collaboration and ingenuity to generate fresh approaches and new solutions to some of education’s most challenging issues,” said Rod Bond, president of Sodexho School Services. “All of this year’s winners will inspire others because they clearly illustrate how strong partnerships between school boards and the community can lead to remarkable opportunities for students.”

American School Board Journal initiated the Magna Awards in 1995 to recognize school boards for taking bold and innovative steps to improve their educational programs. An independent panel of school board members, administrators, and other educators selected this year's 18 winners and 15 honorable mention recipients from almost 300 submissions. This year’s applicants came from more than 30 states; districts in 25 states were winners or honorable mention recipients.

The 2007 winners are highlighted in a special supplement to the April issue of ASBJ and will be formally recognized on Monday, April 16, at the School Leaders Luncheon at the San Francisco Marriott Hotel in San Francisco, Calif. The luncheon is part of NSBA’s 67th annual conference scheduled for April 14-17 in San Francisco.

American School Board Journal (www.asbj.com) is the award-winning, editorially independent education magazine of NSBA. Founded in 1891, ASBJ covers a broad range of topics pertinent to school governance and management, policy making, student achievement, and the art of school leadership. In addition, regular departments cover education news and trends, school law, research, communications, facilities, and technology.

Sodexho, Inc. (www.sodexhoUSA.com) is the leading provider of integrated food and facilities management in the United States, Canada and Mexico with $6.7 billion in annual revenue and 125,000+ employees. Sodexho offers innovative outsourcing solutions in food service, custodial, grounds keeping, plant operations and maintenance, asset management, and laundry services to more than 6,000 corporations, health care, long term care and retirement centers, schools, college campuses, military and remote sites throughout North America. Headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., Sodexho proudly serves as the official food service provider for the U.S. Marine Corps.

District contact:
Jody A. Leleck, associate superintendent for curriculum and instructional programs
(301) 279-3411, or by email at Jody_Leleck@mcpsmd.org

The Magna Awards website is at the link below.

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