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Participants at the Sept. 18 community forum held at Watkins Mill High School had an opportunity to share their views on priorities the school system should focus on for the 2009–2010 school year to improve achievement for all students. Interpreting services were provided in Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese and French. A second Board of Education-sponsored community forum is set for Oct. 16, 7–9:30 p.m., at Albert Einstein High School.
Amy Corbman, second grade teacher at Greencastle Elementary School, won an American Stars of Teaching award from U.S. Department of Education. The program recognizes an exemplary teacher from each state. Corbman was selected because of her unique teaching strategies, enthusiasm and dedication to ensuring that all students achieve. John McGrath, deputy assistant secretary with the U.S. Department of Education, presented the award at a surprise ceremony Sept. 23.
Takoma Park Middle School students were joined by local, state and federal officials; farmers; and nutrition specialists to launch Maryland’s first-ever Homegrown School Lunch Week Sept. 22–26. Students also are learning about where their food comes from, how it is produced and the benefits of a healthy diet—all part of a new Farm-to-School Program established by the state legislature.
The Board of Education's business meeting will be webcast live starting at 6 p.m., Monday, September 22. You need the free Windows MediaPlayer on your computer to view the meeting.
Parents are invited to a series of information meetings on the Downcounty and Northeast consortia choice programs. The evening meetings are scheduled throughout September, October and November for parents of students in grade 8. Students who live in either of these consortium areas can apply to their choice of area schools, offering academies or programs with a particular focus.
More of our students are attaining top scores on the PSAT/ National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, thereby becoming semifinalists in the National Merit Scholarship competition. There are 146 semifinalists this year—22 more than last year. The semifinalists, who represent 15 MCPS high schools, were selected from among last year’s high school juniors. These students, now seniors, will go on to compete nationally for scholarships that will be offered next spring.
Parents and other community members can ask questions, find out about school system programs and services, and take home tips on how to help children succeed at a Sept. 26 “Ask MCPS” event. Bilingual staff will be available for coffee and conversation between 8 a.m. and 12 noon at 451 Hungerford Drive, Rockville, Suite 508.
Michael Zarchin, principal of Thomas W. Pyle Middle School, is the winner of this year’s Mark Mann Excellence and Harmony Award, presented each year to an outstanding MCPS administrator. Zarchin was recognized for promoting academic excellence in a nurturing and respectful environment that takes into account the needs of the whole child. The award was presented Sept. 17 at the superintendent’s administrative and supervisory meeting.