PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENTS >
Board of Education Discusses Recovery of Education; Takes Tentative Action on Board Policies ACF and ACI; Receives Update on Antiracist System Audit; and Approves Wage Adjustments
The Montgomery County Board of Education (Board) conducted a hybrid (in-person and virtual) business meeting on Tuesday, April 20, 2021. During the meeting, the Board received an update on Montgomery County Publics’ (MCPS) recovery plan; took tentative action on Board policies; received an update on the Antiracist System Audit; approved wage adjustments for employees; made several administrative appointments; and approved several recognitions. The agenda for the meeting, with links to related materials, can be viewed on the Board of Education website.
Watch the recording of the April 20, 2021, meeting.
Recovery of Education
The Board received an update and held a discussion on MCPS’ recovery of education plan. To date, more than 63,000 kindergarten—Grade 12 students have returned to in-person learning. The Board also received an update on how the district plans address math recovery and assess learning disruption. MCPS is planning for a full, in-person five-day week schedule for students in the fall. Continued improvements in public health conditions, an increase in vaccinations, and a relaxation of restrictions will allow for more students in-person and the resumption of typical in-person activities and instruction. MCPS will continue to work closely with local, state and national public health officials to follow recommended health and safety protocols while welcoming staff, students, and families back to school buildings.
View the PowerPoint Presentation.
Read the Community Update.
Antiracist System Audit
The Board received an update from staff on the Antiracist System Audit. In November 2020, the Board approved the Mid-Atlantic Equity Consortium (MAEC) as the consultant to conduct the audit. MCPS and MAEC have been working together to design the audit. The first step of the audit was a document review, which allowed the consultants to study the progress that MCPS has made in its equity work and begin to identify areas of needed growth.
The equity audit tool will launch in May and will be available until Friday, June 4. School leadership teams will participate in completing the tool. The tool is designed to collect perceptual data on the implementation of policies, programs, and practices in schools and central offices that impact students or staff relative to their race, ethnicity, and other important factors. The goal for this tool is to help district leadership reflect on whether current policies, practices, and procedures are equitable.
This tool is just one-step in collecting perceptions about the impact of our practices and policies. All MCPS staff members will have opportunities to provide input and engage in the Antiracist System Audit. Additional data will be collected from a variety of stakeholders through surveys, focus groups, town halls, and interviews. All of the data will be combined to create a comprehensive view of the school system. This will allow the district to determine next steps in ensuring All Means All and guide our ongoing work with the Equity and Achievement Framework.
For the latest information on the Antiracist System Audit, please visit https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/antiracist/.
View the PowerPoint presentation.
Tentative Action, Policy ACF, Sexual Harassment
The Board took tentative action on Policy ACF, Sexual Harassment. On May 6, 2020, the U.S. Department of Education shared regulations to govern reporting, investigation, and remedy of incidents of sexual harassment as a form of sexual discrimination under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, as amended. These regulations set forth a definition of sexual harassment and specific reporting, investigation, and training procedures for K?12 education institutions, as well as postsecondary educational institutions receiving federal education funds. The Policy Management Committee (Committee) reviewed Policy ACF in response to the Board’s September 22, 2020, resolution suspending Board Policy ACF (Resolution No. 445-20), while the Committee developed revisions in alignment with the requirements of the new federal Title IX regulations.
The Committee proposes renaming Policy ACF to Sexual Misconduct and Sexual Harassment of Students and designating the scope of the revised Policy ACF to address sexual misconduct among students and sexual harassment of students. The Committee simultaneously is offering a companion resolution that proposes a new draft Policy ACI, Sexual Harassment of Employees, to relocate portions of the existing Policy ACF relevant to sexual harassment of employees. The Board is seeking public comment on these proposed changes until Monday, May 17, 2021.
Read the Board memorandum and see the proposed changes.
Tentative Action, New Policy ACI, Sexual Harassment of Employees
The Policy Management Committee (Committee) reviewed Policy ACF, Sexual Harassment, in response to the Board’s September 22, 2020, resolution suspending Board Policy ACF (Resolution No. 445-20) while the Committee developed revisions in alignment with the requirements of new federal Title IX regulations. The Committee met on October 22, 2020, and March 26, 2021, to review draft Policy ACF. The Committee proposed relocating and updating portions of the existing Policy ACF relevant to sexual harassment of employees into a separate Policy ACI, Sexual Harassment of Employees. The Committee simultaneously is offering a companion resolution that proposes renaming Policy ACF to Sexual Misconduct and Sexual Harassment of Students and designating the scope of the revised Policy ACF to address sexual misconduct among students and sexual harassment of students. The Board is seeking public comment on this draft policy that is in compliance with state and federal requirements for the reporting, investigation, and remedy of incidents of discrimination and harassment of employees. The comment period will be open until May 17, 2021.
Read the draft policy.
Amended Negotiated Agreements
The Board of Education voted to approve general wage adjustment, experience steps, and longevity adjustments for MCPS bargaining unit employees. The Board also voted to approve general wage adjustment and step equivalent for positions not on the salary schedule.
Positions on Educational Legislation
The Board received an update and held a discussion of the 2021 legislative session and the implications for the school system. The Maryland Department of Legislative Services developed and posted The 90 Day Report, A Review of the 2021 Legislative Session, which reports on all of the legislation this session. The Maryland Association of Boards of Education (MABE) also shared their final summary on the legislation that passed, failed, and has an impact on education. These resources were used to develop the analysis of many of the bills.
Read the memorandum to the Board.
Edward U. Taylor Science Materials Center—Historical Designation
The Board received an update on the Edward U. Taylor Science Materials Center, which is currently under evaluation for designation to Montgomery County’s Master Plan for Historic Designation. The County’s Historic Preservation staff is in the process of evaluating the historic and architectural significance of the property in order to determine whether it meets criteria for historic designation outlined in §24A-3 of the Montgomery County Historic Preservation Ordinance. The evaluation process involves close collaboration with MCPS, review of existing documentation, and new research into the school. At the conclusion of the evaluation process, the Historic Preservation Commission will conduct a work session and public hearing to determine whether to recommend that the property be designated. The Edward U. Taylor Center was built as an elementary school for African American students in 1952. The building currently serves as the Taylor Science Center for the processing and storage of science kits for MCPS.
The Board of Education approved the following administrative appointments:
Arlene Baez, currently English Language Learner specialist, Data Recognition Corporation, Maple Grove, Minnesota, as director, Department of English Learner and Multilingual Education, Office of Curriculum and Instructional Programs, Office of Teaching, Learning, and Schools.
Carl W. Seward, currently assistant principal, Gunston Middle School, Arlington Public Schools, as supervisor, Secondary Math, Office of Curriculum and Instructional Programs, Office of Teaching, Learning, and Schools.
The Board of Education is scheduled to hold its next business meeting on Tuesday,
May 11, 2021. The Board will meet in a hybrid format (in-person and virtually). 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: Ms. Brenda Wolff, president; Ms. Karla Silvestre, vice president. Members: Dr. Judith Docca, Mrs. Shebra L. Evans, Ms. Lynne Harris, Mrs. Patricia O’Neill, Mrs. Rebecca Smondrowski, and Mr. Nicholas (Nick) Asante, student member. Dr. Jack R. Smith, superintendent of schools and secretary-treasurer. Office of the Board: 240-740-3030.
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