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Board of Education Approves Studies of Sites for Alternative Education Programs and Discusses Strategic Partnerships
Board also holds work session on Tilden Middle School/Rock Terrace School collocation; approves policy revisions; makes administrative appointments
The Montgomery County Board of Education met on Tuesday, April 14, 2015, at the Carver Educational Services Center, 850 Hungerford Drive in Rockville. Among other items, the Board discussed the relocation of MCPS’ Alternative Education Programs; held a work session on the collocation of Rock Terrace and Tilden Middle School; and took action on several policies. The agenda for the meeting, with links to related materials, can be viewed on the Board of Education website. You can also watch the video of the meeting by clicking here.
Relocation of Alternative Education Programs
The Board held a wide-ranging discussion and took action on the possible relocation of the Alternative Education Programs.
Alternative Education Programs in MCPS are currently located at the Blair G. Ewing Center and the current six-year Capital Improvements Program (CIP) includes funds to make improvements to this facility. However, the Board’s requested amendments to the CIP would reallocate those funds to make improvements to the former English Manor Elementary School facility in Rockville, allowing the Alternative Education Programs to be relocated there. The Montgomery County Council approved the supplemental appropriation request with the caveat that MCPS update the feasibility study that was conducted for the Blair G. Ewing Center site and also conduct a feasibility study for another site that the Board of Education deems appropriate. Staff in the Department of Facilities Management evaluated potential sites and recommended that the former English Manor as the most appropriate site for Alternative Education Programs. Interim Superintendent Larry A. Bowers had recommended English Manor as the second site for a feasibility study.
After discussing the interim superintendent’s request, the Board approved updating the feasibility study of the Blair G. Ewing Center and asked that staff conduct a conceptual review of several other possible locations for the Alternative Education Programs, including the English Manor site, other closed schools and Board property, the current site of Rock Terrace School (should it become available), and commercial locations. At least one of these sites will be selected for a second feasibility study once the conceptual review is completed and presented to the Board.
Read the Memo to the Board
The Board received a presentation from MCPS staff and held a discussion on the district’s efforts to enhance its community engagement through strategic partnerships. The MCPS Strategic Planning Framework, Building Our Future Together: Students, Staff, and Community, articulates the Montgomery County Board of Education’s commitment to community engagement with the following priority: Engage collaboratively and respectfully with all partners, building a self-renewing learning community that reflects our values. The Montgomery County Board of Education has demonstrated its long-standing belief that community engagement is essential to student success and MCPS has accordingly identified community engagement among its five core strategic priorities.
There are many business, community, government, higher education, and other stakeholders that currently collaborate with MCPS through partnerships. These partnerships play an essential role in supporting teaching and learning by supplying volunteers, offering opportunities for students to engage in the world of work, or acting as conveners of community stakeholders and organizations committed to education. The Office of Community Engagement and Partnerships (OCEP) is working to create a sustainable infrastructure for partnerships within MCPS.
Read the memo to the Board
Work Session on the Collocation of Rock Terrace and Tilden Middle School
The Board discussed the interim superintendent’s recommendation that Tilden Middle School and Rock Terrace School share a new facility. A Roundtable Discussion Group convened in winter 2014–2015 to review the possible collocation of Rock Terrace School and Tilden Middle School. Collocation of special education schools with general education schools allows the school system to meet the goal of providing students with disabilities opportunities to receive instruction in the general education setting to the maximum extent appropriate. Mr. Bowers has recommend that Tilden and Rock Terrace maintain separate staff, instructional spaces, and leadership in order to fulfill their unique missions.
The Board received an overview on the Roundtable and input received during the process. The Board will hold a public hearing on the recommendation on April 27, 2015, and is expected to make a final decision on the recommendation on May 12, 2015.
Policy FEC, Mandatory Submission of Plans for Major Capital Projects
The Board took tentative action on Policy FEC, Mandatory Submission of Plans for Major Capital Projects. Policy FEC provides for the submission of construction plans to the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission and/or the Montgomery County Planning Board, as required by Maryland law. This policy has been has been renamed Policy FEC, Mandatory Referral Review Requirements for Major Capital Projects, and formatted to align with current policy format.
The recommended revisions also include updated directory information and a redaction of quotation of state law. The Board’s Policy Management Committee reviewed Policy FEC in February 2014. Policy FEC will now be distributed for public comment and will considered for final approval at a future meeting.
See the changes in the policy
Policy GIH, Funding Other Post-Employment Benefits
The Board approved changes to Policy GIH, Funding Other Post-Employment Benefits. Policy GIH sets forth the priorities of the Board regarding funding of post-employment health benefits for eligible retirees, also known as Other Post-Employment Benefits (OPEB). On October 14, 2014, the Board tentatively approved the changes and sent the revised policy out for public comments. The policy was updated to align with actions taken by the County Council related to MCPS’ trust to fund the current retiree OPEB and contributing money to the countywide trust.
See the revised policy
Policy GHC, Salaries and Other Benefits of Professional Personnel
The Board approved changes to Policy GHC, Salaries and Other Benefits of Professional Personnel. Policy GHC provides guidelines for publishing salary schedules; assuring placement of administrators and supervisors; business and operations administrators, and teacher-level employees; rehiring retirees; and establishing anniversary dates. On October 14, 2014, the Board tentatively approved the changes and sent the revised policy out for public comments. The policy was updated to align the policy with negotiated agreements and current practice. The recommended revisions also include updated directory information and references to current law.
The Board of Education approved the following administrative appointments:
Donna S. Hollingshead, currently associate superintendent of elementary schools, as associate superintendent of school administration, Office of School Support and Improvement.
LaVerne G. Kimball, currently associate superintendent of elementary schools, as associate superintendent of elementary schools, Office of School Support and Improvement.
Darryl L. Williams, currently associate superintendent of middle schools, as associate superintendent of secondary schools, Office of School Support and Improvement.
Carol A. Kindt, currently senior executive director, Human Resources, Orange County Public Schools, as associate superintendent, Office of Human Resources and Development.
Robert W. Dodd, currently principal, Argyle Middle School, as elementary consulting principal, Office of Human Resources and Development.
Kristin A. Alban, currently assistant principal, Lake Seneca Elementary School, as principal, Monocacy Elementary School
Catherine R. Allie, currently principal, Waldon Woods Elementary School, Prince George’s County Public Schools, as principal, Potomac Elementary School
Michael M. Powell, currently principal, Rippling Woods Elementary School, Anne Arundel County Public Schools, as principal, Viers Mill Elementary School
Facilities and School Construction
The Board approved the following item related to school construction projects and facilities:
-Appointed an architectural firm for the Belmont Elementary School Revitalization/Expansion Project Feasibility Study
-Appointed an architectural firm for the Cold Spring Elementary School Revitalization/Expansion Project Feasibility Study
Resolutions: The Board approved the following resolutions:
-A resolution recognizing April 12-18, 2015, as National Volunteer Week
-A resolution recognizing April 19-25, 2015, as National Student Leadership Week
The Board will hold its next regular business meeting on Monday, April 27, 2015. Please check the Board of Education 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. Patricia O’Neill, president; Mr. Michael Durso, vice president. Members: Mr. Christopher Barclay, Dr. Judy Docca, Mr. Philip Kauffman, Ms. Jill Ortman-Fouse, Mrs. Rebecca Smondrowski, and Ms. Dahlia Huh, student member. Mr. Larry A. Bowers, interim superintendent and secretary-treasurer. Office of the Board: 301-279-3617.
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