Board of Education Approves FY 2013 Operating Budget and Employee Agreements; Discusses Mathematics

June 15, 2012
The Montgomery County Board of Education met on Thursday, June 14, 2012, at the Carver Educational Services Center, 850 Hungerford Drive in Rockville. Among other items, the Board approved the Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 operating budget for Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS), approved agreements for FY 2013 with its three employee associations, discussed updates to the MCPS mathematics program,  and made several advisory committee appointments. The agenda for the meeting, with links to related materials, can be viewed on the Board of Education website

Fiscal Year 2013 Operating Budget
The Board of Education approved a $2.16 billion Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 operating budget for Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS). The budget includes the minimum increase in local funding allowed by state law and allows MCPS to keep up with its continued growth but includes no major new initiatives or programs. The budget also allows MCPS to provide a compensation increase to its employees, who have not received an increase for two or three years. The $2.16 billion budget is a $73.2 million increase from the current year’s operating budget, a growth of about 3.5 percent. However, $27.2 million of that increase is for state teacher pension costs that were shifted to local school boards. With MCPS enrollment expected to grow by more than 2,400 students, the increase in funding will allow the county to keep its per-student investment at $9,759 per student, which is $1,490 lower than it was in FY 2009. Over the past three years, MCPS has saved $400 million through budget reductions and efficiencies. Read the Board memo

Fiscal Year 2013 Employee Association Agreements 
The Board of Education voted to approve agreements for FY 2013 with its three employee associations—The Montgomery County Education Association (MCEA), the Service Employees International Union Local 500 (SEIU) and the Montgomery County Associations of Administrators and Principals (MCAAP). Under the agreement, all employees hired before February 1, 2012 will receive a compensation increase in FY 2013—their first increase in two or three years. The increase averages out to 3.4 percent per employee; however, employees will be required to pay higher out-of-pocket copayments for prescription drugs and doctor visits.  The increase in compensation will cost about $47 million, but approximately $27 million of that cost is offset by savings from higher than expected turnover and the ability to hire new employees at lower-than-expected salary levels.

Read the Board memo on the MCEA agreement
Read the Board memo on the SEIU agreement
Read the Board memo on the MCAAP agreement

MCPS Mathematics Program
The Board of Education had a wide-ranging discussion on mathematics in MCPS. A work group was established by the Board in 2009 to address the math curriculum, pacing of instruction, professional development, and levels of performance for all student groups. The work group shared its findings with the Board in 2010 and proposed a vision for mathematics in MCPS that promotes deep mathematical understanding. The work group’s vision for mathematics in MCPS will now be aligned with the implementation of Curriculum 2.0 and the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in MCPS schools. Mathematics in Curriculum 2.0 and the CCSS will provide for deeper learning of the important basic skills, allowing for students to master concepts and set the stage for student success in mathematics throughout their schooling. The Board heard a presentation from MCPS curriculum staff and principals. The Board had a conversation that focused on several areas, including the need to communicate more clearly with parents about the direction of math instruction—including the issue of enriched and accelerated instruction—and the need for continuing professional development for teachers. Read the Board memo

Fees for Food and Nutrition Services Programs
The Board approved fees for school meals that are unchanged from the 2011-2012 school year. Breakfast will cost $1.30, lunch in elementary schools will cost $2.50 and lunch in secondary schools will cost $2.75. For students that received reduced-price meals, breakfast is free and lunch is 40 cents. Read the Board memo

The Board of Education approved the following appointments to the Ethics Panel, Citizens Advisory Committee on Family Life and Human Development, and the Montgomery County Collaboration Board for Career and Technology Education:

Ethics Panel
-Arleas Upton Kea
-Holli Beckerman Jaffe
-Michael Whitener

Citizens Advisory Committee on Family Life and Human Development
-Shari Argue
-Alicia McAdam
-Rico Lizbinski
-Nathan Xie

Montgomery County Collaboration Board for Career and Technology Education
-Steve Black
-William Clements
-Tom Clendenin
-Mary Kay Shartle-Galotto
-Mario A. Guzman
-Jeffrey Hearle
-Joe Kessler
-Joseph Malouf
-Wanda Martinez
-Lisa McDonald
-Denise Newton
-Toby J. Ratcliffe
-Harold Redden

The Board also took action on several items related to facilities, including:

-Formally accepted the modernization project at Seven Locks Elementary School and the addition projects at Jackson Road, Rock View and Whetstone elementary schools;

-Approved preliminary plans for the modernization project at
Rock Creek Forest Elementary School.

The Board of Education approved the following resolutions:

-A resolution recognizing the Distinguished Hispanic Scholars.

-A resolution acknowledging the recipients of the
Leadership Montgomery Youth Community Leadership Awards.

-A resolution recognizing
The Gates Millennium Scholars Program Scholarship Recipients.

-A resolution recognizing the
Montgomery County Alliance of Black School Educators Scholarship recipients.

-A resolution recognizing
The George B. Thomas Sr. Learning Academy, Inc. High Achievement Scholarship Recipients.

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. Shirley Brandman, president; Mr. Christopher Barclay, vice president. Members: Ms. Laura Berthiaume, Dr. Judy Docca, Mr. Michael Durso, Mr. Phil Kauffman, Ms. Patricia O’Neill, and Mr. Alan Xie, student member. Dr. Joshua P. Starr, superintendent and secretary-treasurer. Office of the Board: 301-279-3617.

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