Board of Education Meets Virtually and Votes to Approve Virtual-Only Reopening for the First Semester; Discusses the Draft Recovery of Education Plan; Receives an Update on Contract Negotiations for SEIU Local 500, MCAAP, and MCEA; and Approves a Resolution Regarding Resolution/Follow-up Request Timelines

August 10, 2020

The Montgomery County Board of Education (Board) conducted a virtual business meeting on Thursday, August 6, 2020.  All Board members participated remotely, given the current health and safety concerns due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) crisis.  During the meeting, the Board voted to approve a virtual-only reopening for the fall semester; discussed the Draft Montgomery County Public Schools’ (MCPS) Recovery of Education Plan;  received an update on contract negotiations with the Service Employees International Union Local 500 (SEIU), Montgomery County Association of Administrators and Principals (MCAAP), and Montgomery County Education Association (MCEA); and approved a resolution regarding resolution/follow-up request timelines. 

The agenda for the meeting, with links to related materials, can be viewed on the Board of Education website.

Watch the recording of the August 6, 2020, meeting.

Montgomery County Public Schools’ Recovery of Education Plan

On August 4, 2020, the Draft MCPS’ Recovery of Education Plan was released to the public to inform stakeholders of the contents in advance of the Board’s August 6 meeting.  There have been, and there will continue to be ongoing efforts to collect feedback from stakeholders, so revisions may be made. During the August 6 meeting, MCPS leaders and staff presented the Draft Recovery of Education Plan. Board members provided their input and asked questions about the plan. There was no action to approve the plan; however the Board voted to approve a virtual-only reopening for the 2020-2021 school year, which begins on Monday, August 31, 2020. MCPS will work with local and state leaders at the end of the first semester to reassess the decision and make recommendations for possible in-person instruction beginning in the second semester, if health conditions allow.

Read the adopted resolution.

During the discussion of the Draft MCPS’ Recovery of Education Plan, information about the following components of the plan were presented and discussed:

  • Engaging live and recorded instruction for all students
  • Highlights of a sample instructional week that include:
  • Daily class meetings and social-emotional learning
  • Math
  • Literacy
  • Related and special services
  • English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), special education
  • Interventions/individual support
  • Social studies/science
  • Art, music, physical education
  • Additional supports for students with special needs and students receiving ESOL services
  • Opportunities for participation in a variety of extracurricular activities and athletics
  • An overview of plans for grading and tracking attendance and student engagement
  • Resources and training for staff, students, and families on a wide range of topics

MCPS leadership and staff members will work on revisions based on Board and stakeholder feedback. The Board will review and take final action on the components of the virtual-only plan on August 25 at its next business meeting.

View the PowerPoint presentation.

Review a copy of the Draft Recovery of Education Plan.

Update on Contract Negotiations

Superintendent Jack R. Smith presented Board members with an update on association negotiations.  He reported that MCPS reached an agreement with the SEIU Local 500 and MCAAP associations and will move toward ratification of those contracts.  It is expected that staff will present the ratified contracts for the Board’s consideration and adoption in early September at the Board’s business meeting.

In addition, Dr. Smith reported that MCPS and MCEA have not yet reached an agreement and are at an impasse. MCPS and MCEA will continue to negotiate terms with the assistance of the Public School Labor Relations Board.

In the interim, and on the superintendent’s recommendation, the Board approved the following resolution concerning MCEA:

Resolved, That the Board of Education will continue to apply the relevant terms and conditions of the Negotiated Agreement, except as modified by any Memorandum of Understanding between the parties related to the COVID-19 pandemic; and be it further

Resolved, That this resolution automatically expires upon ratification of a successor Negotiated Agreement between the parties, or on September 30, 2020, whichever occurs first.

Read the adopted resolution.

New Business

The Board of Education approved a resolution that will permit some flexibility in meeting deadlines for Board resolutions and follow-ups due to the public health emergency and the availability of critical data.  This flexibility shall be afforded until August 2021, or until the COVID-19 state of emergency has expired.  The Board also approved the extension of the requested report containing the delineated Grade 3 disaggregated literacy data by school until November 2020. 

Read the adopted resolution.   

Future Meeting

The Board of Education is scheduled to hold its next business meeting on Tuesday, August 25, 2020.  The virtual format of this meeting will continue, given the current COVID-19 crisis.  The agenda is subject to change. Please check the Board of Education website and meeting calendar for further information. 

About the Board of Education
The Montgomery County Board of Education is the official educational policymaking body in the county. The Board is responsible for the direction and operation of the public school system. The Board consists of seven county residents elected by voters for a four-year term and a student elected by secondary school students for a one-year term. Board members are elected countywide but run at-large or from the Board district in which they reside.

Montgomery County Board of Education: Mrs. Shebra L. Evans, president; Ms. Brenda Wolff, vice president.  Members: Ms. Jeanette E. Dixon, Dr. Judith Docca, Mrs. Patricia O’Neill, Ms. Karla Silvestre, Mrs. Rebecca Smondrowski, and Mr. Nicholas Asante, student member. Dr. Jack R. Smith, superintendent of schools and secretary-treasurer. Office of the Board: 240-740-3030. 




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