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U.S. Congressman Chris Van Hollen chats with Albert Einstein High School student Moshoodat Abiola and Northwest High School student Edward Krasniewski at a recent reception held on Capitol Hill. The students are part of the Student Emerging Leaders project, founded by the Montgomery County Business Roundtable for Education, which brings top students from each MCPS high school to Congressional Black and Hispanic Caucuses in Washington.
Parents learned about the special education process during a recent Parent Academy workshop conducted in Spanish by parent–community coordinator Nilda Colgrove of the Division of Family and Community Partnerships. DFCP, part of the Department of Communications, has planned a range of workshops this year to support all parents as advocates for their children and partners in learning.
Registration is open for free Parent Academy workshops taking place now through May. Workshop topics include understanding preteens and teens, helping children develop good study and organizational skills, and transitioning to middle school. Coordinated by the Department of Communications' Division of Family and Community Partnerships, the Parent Academy was created as part of middle school reform to empower all parents as advocates and partners in their children's education.
Northwood High School was one of a number of schools that celebrated Pi Day on March 14. Pi—approximately 3.14159—represents the ratio of any circle’s circumference to its diameter in Euclidean geometry. Students gathered in the stadium to display one of the many digits of pi, then returned to class for a variety of pi-related activities.
Panasonic Foundation officials visited schools to observe cutting-edge practices in middle school reform, rigorous instruction, diversity training and use of data for decision making. A November 2007 Panasonic publication focused on the school system’s sustained, successful efforts to narrow the achievement gap by race and poverty, featuring programs at Viers Mill ES and Gaithersburg HS. The foundation partners with school districts to develop models that support achievement of all students.
Sherwood High School in Silver Spring is "a community school and a school of academic excellence," says Principal Bill Gregory. One way the school excels is through its Global Studies Program, where there is a focus on international perspectives. This weekend students celebrate the 37th annual Rock & Roll Revival, a countywide favorite.
High school principals and staff explore interactive reports that allow them to view SAT performance and participation compared with the past five years. The new tool can show individual student data, use PSAT data as predictors of SAT readiness and compare school performance throughout the school system. The Class of 2007 set new participation records on the SAT and ACT, with double-digit increases in SAT participation for both African American and Latino students.
Literacy coaches, a vital component of middle school reform, guide teachers in embedding literacy strategies into instruction. For example, Ramona Howard-Turner of Benjamin Banneker Middle School works with art teacher Jennifer Espinoza to encourage students to read about Chagall to gain insight into his work. Literacy coaches are in four middle schools in addition to Banneker—Earle B. Wood, Sligo, Roberto Clemente and Montgomery Village.