QuickNotes: Your Information Connection to Montgomery County Public Schools
Vol. 1, No. 3

Mark Your Calendar
MCPS monthly calendar (PDF)
School calendars
Guide to special programs

Instructional TV Highlights
Our Schools Today, which airs on MCPS Instructional TV, Cable Channel 34, helps keep parents updated on important school system issues. The program is available in six languages.
Take 10: Listen in on discussions about our students, our schools and our community. It's 10 minutes you won't want to miss!
MCPS Instructional TV

Parent Connection: A quarterly printed publication for parents of MCPS students. Available in six languages.
Navigating the System: A parent’s guide to Montgomery County Public Schools. In multiple languages.
Aim High/Working Together: Publications about what parents should know to help their children excel. In multiple languages.
The Bulletin: A weekly publication for MCPS employees and other constituents.
Other publications

Other Links of Interest
Budget information
Enroll your child
Breakfast and lunch menus
Colleges, careers, financial aid and more
Frequently called phone numbers
Parent Web page
Contact us
Where to find it

Parent Workshop on Reading Skills Offered

Strong reading skills are crucial for a student's future academic success. Parents are invited to find out how to improve and support their child's reading skills in a workshop on Dec. 1 from 7-9 p.m. The workshop, coordinated by the Division of Family and Community Partnerships, will be held simultaneously at A. Mario Loiederman and Silver Spring International middle schools, and at Gaithersburg and John F. Kennedy high schools. There also will be a Spanish-language workshop available at each school. The snow date is Dec. 8.

More parent workshops are coming up in 2006, starting Jan. 26.

For more information or to see a list of workshops
call 301-279-3100 or visit Family and Community Partnerships

Online College Board SAT Course Available

An online SAT preparation program from The College Board, developers of the SAT, is available at no cost for high school students through December 2005. The course provides in-depth test coverage that helps students prepare for success on the SAT's math, critical reading and writing sections. Seniors can access the course with a password available from their SAT Prep Course teacher, or from the school's counseling office or career/college center.
High School Instruction and Achievement

Assistance with Exam Fees

MCPS has funds available for students who need assistance paying fees required for the SAT, Advanced Placement tests or other exams necessary for college admissions or workforce entry programs. For more information, students should contact their high school guidance counselor.

Consortia Open Houses Set

Parents of 8th grade students living in the Northeast or Downcounty consortia areas are invited to attend open houses, which will highlight the unique academy programs at each school.

In the Northeast Consortium, open houses are scheduled for:

  • Nov. 3 at James Hubert Blake High School
  • Nov. 10 at Springbrook High School
  • Nov. 17 at Paint Branch High School
In the Downcounty Consortium, the open houses are set for:
  • Nov. 2 at Wheaton High School
  • Nov. 7 at Northwood High School
  • Nov. 9 at John F. Kennedy High School
  • Nov. 10 at Albert Einstein High School
  • Nov. 14 at Montgomery Blair High School
They all begin at 7 p.m. There also are November meetings for parents of private school students who wish to enroll in public school.

For more information, call the consortia office at
301-649-8010 or visit consortium Web sites:
Downcounty Consortium
Northeast Consortium

Middle School Magnet Consortium
Meetings Scheduled

MCPS offers three innovative and challenging magnet curriculums in middle school. Parents can learn more about the programs in information meetings and open houses on the Middle School Magnet Consortium. Each session will provide an overview of the programs and choice process for the three middle schools in the consortium—Argyle Magnet School for Information Technology, A. Mario Loiederman Magnet School for Creative and Performing Arts, and Parkland Magnet School for Aerospace Technology.

All three will be hosting open houses so that parents can meet the staff and learn more about the programs. The open houses begin at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 21 at Argyle, Nov. 28 at Loiederman and Dec. 5 at Parkland.

For those students living outside the consortium, information meetings will be held:

  • Nov. 2 at Rockville High School
  • Nov. 9 at Walter Johnson High School
  • Nov. 14 at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School
The information meetings will begin at 7 p.m. and will be presented in English and Spanish. They will all present the same information.
Middle School Magnet Consortium

Meetings on Highly Gifted Programs

Parent information meetings are being held for the Center Program for highly gifted students, which provides exceptionally gifted and motivated fourth- and fifth-grade students with a full-time accelerated and enriched instructional program. MCPS has seven Center programs throughout the county.

Information presented at these meetings is identical. If you are unable to attend the meeting designated for your center, you may attend another that is more convenient. All meetings begin at 7:30 p.m. in the auditorium of the following high schools. The information meeting at Kennedy will be presented in English and Spanish.

  • Nov. 21: Quince Orchard High School
    for the Center program at:
    • Clearspring Elementary (serves students in the Damascus, Gaithersburg, Magruder and Watkins Mill clusters)
    • Fox Chapel Elementary (serves students in the Northwest, Poolesville, Quince Orchard and Seneca Valley clusters)
  • Nov. 29: Winston Churchill High School
    for the Center program at:
    • Chevy Chase Elementary (serves students in the Bethesda-Chevy Chase and Whitman clusters)
    • Cold Spring Elementary (serves students in the Churchill and Wootton clusters)
  • Nov. 30: John F. Kennedy High School
    for the Center program at:
    • Lucy V. Barnsley Elementary (serves students in the Walter Johnson, Rockville and Wheaton clusters)
    • Dr. Charles R. Drew Elementary (serves students in the Blake, Paint Branch, Sherwood and Springbrook clusters)
    • Pine Crest Elementary (serves students in the Blair, Einstein, Kennedy and Northwood Clusters)
Highly Gifted Centers

Information Available on High School Programs

A parent information meeting on the Communications Arts Program at Montgomery Blair High School will be held on Nov. 3 at 7:30 p.m. The Communications Arts Program is a rigorous four-year humanities honors program that emphasizes independent and project-based study in English, social studies and media education. Eighth grade students who are residents of the Downcounty Consortium (DCC) or who currently attend a DCC middle school are eligible to apply.
Communications Arts Program

Also slated for November is an information meeting on the countywide Global Ecology Studies Program at Poolesville High School, which provides students with the knowledge and understanding of the science and the cultural, social, political, economic and technological conditions that affect the quality of life on the planet. The meeting will be Nov. 30 beginning at 7 p.m.
Global Ecology Program

New Transportation Web Site Features
Bus Schedules

The Department of Transportation has developed a new Web site with useful information for parents. The newest feature allows parents to obtain school bus route information and includes information on the "Ride by the Rules" campaign that promotes bus safety. The site also outlines useful tips on bus procedures in case of delays or weather emergencies. The routes can be accessed through the Department of Transportation.


Safe Schools Hotline

A safe and healthy school environment is everyone's concern. Often, tips from parents or students can prevent youth violence, drug and alcohol abuse, gang involvement and other dangers to the safety of students. MCPS has a confidential Safe Schools Hotline to report threats, or safety or security violations. This anonymous service is available 24 hours/seven days a week. No Caller ID is used. No one will ask your name. The hotline number is 301-517-5995.
Safe Schools Hotline

Dates to Remember

  • Nov. 1: Professional day for teachers (no school for students)
  • Nov. 5: SAT administered
  • Nov. 8: Board of Education all-day business meeting, Carver Educational Services Center, 10 a.m.
  • Nov. 10: Early release day K-8 - Parent conferences, report cards distributed
  • Nov. 11: Early release day K-8 - Parent conferences, Veterans Day
  • Nov. 24-25: Thanksgiving holidays

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