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About 650 school and community leaders participated in the Fourth Annual Partners for Rigor through Relevancy Conference June 17 at Northwest High School. The focus was on engaging middle and high school students and school communities. In addition to key speakers, the event included 27 breakout sessions that focused on engaging diverse communities to lead change; promoting rigor, relevance and relationships; navigating transitions through secondary school and beyond; and balancing work, school and life.
Schools that recorded the most volunteer hours from July 2007 to March 2008 were honored by the Department of Communications’ Division of Family and Community Partnerships (DFCP). The schools are Gaithersburg, Maryvale and Woodfield elementary; Thomas W. Pyle, Redland and Ridgeview middle; Montgomery Blair, Damascus and Richard Montgomery high; and Mark Twain School.
Summer is a great time for students to become involved in community service activities. Beginning with the Class of 2011, students will need 75 student service learning hours to graduate. Students through the Class of 2010 must meet a 60-hour requirement. In May, the Maryland State Department of Education recognized MCPS high school students Margaret Johnson of Magruder and Keith Stakes of Walter Johnson for service learning contributions to their communities.
The Board of Education honored recent and upcoming retirees at a June 12 reception held at Woodmont Country Club. About 500 employees have announced their retirement since last spring. The retirees received certificates of appreciation signed by Board President Nancy Navarro and Superintendent Jerry D. Weast. MCPS has almost 22,000 employees.
The Professional Library in Carver Educational Services Center closes June 30 and moves to the new library facility at the Universities at Shady Grove (USG) July 14. Collections of the two libraries will be merged to provide expanded access to information and resources for MCPS staff and the eight universities served by USG. Borrowing privileges will begin in September.
More than 4,000 MCPS elementary and secondary students were honored this year at the 19th African American Festival of Academic Excellence (AAFAE), held at the University of Maryland, College Park. County dignitaries and members of the Board of Education also attended. AAFAE has recognized 39,000 students since 1989. Sixty-three percent of families surveyed last year said the festival was a positive influence on their children
The Board of Education's all-day business meeting will be webcast live starting at 6 p.m., Monday, June 23. You need the free Windows MediaPlayer on your computer to view the meeting.
Schools throughout the county celebrated the last day of school June 12 with a range of activities and traditions. For example, Barnsley Elementary School staff and students participated in the annual “clap-out,” where fifth graders formed a line and paraded through the school to applause from lower grades and their former teachers. At Parkland Middle School, students and Principal Ben OuYang celebrated with a moment of team spirit.