Board of Education Renames Elementary School; Discusses Junior Achievement Finance Park and Early Warning Indicators

September 23, 2014
The Montgomery County Board of Education met on Monday, September 22, 2014, at the Carver Educational Services Center, 850 Hungerford Drive in Rockville. Among other items, the Board approved facility allocations that will allow the Junior Achievement Finance Park to be built at Thomas Edison High School of Technology; voted to rename Broad Acres Elementary School as JoAnn Leleck Elementary School at Broad Acres; and heard a presentation on the new Early Warning Indicators tool.  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.

Junior Achievement Finance Park at Thomas Edison High School of Technology
The Board voted to approve revised preliminary plans for the Junior Achievement Finance Park at Thomas Edison High School of Technology. The financial literacy program will be offered to Grade 7 students through the social studies curriculum. The Junior Achievement Finance Park experience begins with four weeks of curriculum in the classroom and culminates with a day at the Finance Park where students are immersed in a reality-based, decision-making process that addresses budgeting, health care, investments, philanthropy and banking. The onsite activities allow students to execute what they learned in the classroom and provide a strong foundation to understanding how to maintain a realistic personal budget. The revitalization/expansion project of Thomas Edison High School of Technology, scheduled for completion in August 2017, provides the opportunity to construct additional spaces needed for the Junior Achievement Finance Park. A fourth floor will be added to the proposed design of the building to accommodate the Junior Achievement Finance Park without impacting the current or future programs at Thomas Edison High School of Technology. The total cost of adding the fourth floor for the Junior Achievement Finance Park program at Thomas Edison High School of Technology is estimated at approximately $7.5 million. Junior Achievement of Greater Washington is willing to fund one-third of the design and construction costs, not to exceed $2.5 million.  The balance of $5 million is included in the Fiscal Year 2015–2020 Capital Improvements Program.
Read the Board memo

Early Warning Indicators
The Board received a presentation from MCPS staff and held a discussion on the district’s efforts toward developing a systemwide early warning monitoring tool to support all students and ensure their academic success by identifying factors that may impede their academic progress. The tool—Early Warning Indicators (EWI)—allows school and central services staff members to identify students who may need interventions and mobilize the necessary supports. MCPS will use the EWI to inform resource allocation, interventions, supports, and accountability. During the 2013-2014 school year, models for monitoring were developed and tested, with pilot schools and stakeholders providing feedback. The EWI tool places multiple data points in one place, but also provides information about the relationship of those data points. It will be able to calculate for each student the level of support he or she needs through the weighting of critical success factors, including attendance, behavior, coursework and mobility.  It also can diagnose in real time whether a student is making sufficient progress toward on-time graduation.

Read the memo

Renaming Broad Acres Elementary School
The Board of Education unanimously voted to rename Broad Acres Elementary School as JoAnn Leleck Elementary School at Broad Acres in honor of Mrs. JoAnn Leleck, who served as principal of the school from 1999 to 2004 and who passed away in 2012. The Board of Education received a petition on June 30, 2014, with more than 200 signatures from parents, community members, and staff members requesting that the school be renamed to honor Mrs. Leleck.

In accordance with Board of Education Policy FFA,
Naming School Facilities, and Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) Regulation FFA-RA, Naming School Facilities, the principal of Broad Acres, Dr. Peter H. Bray convened a committee to consider the proposal and make a recommendation to the Superintendent of Schools. Committee members unanimously affirmed the request that the school be renamed JoAnn Leleck Elementary School at Broad Acres.

As a lifelong educator, Mrs. Leleck was known for her passion and commitment to instilling in every child a love for learning and the motivation to excel. During her time as principal of Broad Acres, she orchestrated the school’s remarkable turnaround from one of the lowest performing schools in Maryland to one of the highest at the time, a success story that received nationwide attention and was featured in
Leading for Equity: The Pursuit of Excellence in Montgomery County Public Schools, published by Harvard Education Press. The name change will go into effect on Wednesday, October 1, 2014.

Read the press release

MCPS Defined Contribution Plans
The Board held a discussion and voted unanimously to approve changes to the current MCPS 403(b) and 457(b) Tax-Sheltered Savings Plans. The MCPS Defined Contribution Advisory Work Group recently completed a detailed and comprehensive review of the operation and administration of the Defined Contribution Plans and made several recommendations to the Board that are designed to improve the administration and operation of these plans and save money for participants. The changes will move MCPS from its current nine vendors to one recordkeeper, effective January 1, 2016.

Read the Board Item

Facilities and School Construction
The Board approved the following items related to school construction projects and facilities:

Approval of the lease renewal for relocatable classrooms.

Resolutions: The Board approved the following resolutions:
A resolution proclaiming October 8, 2014, as Walk to School Day
-A resolution declaring the month of October as National Disability Awareness Month in MCPS
-A resolution in honor of Mrs. Cynthia A. Kerr, former MCCPTA president
-A resolution declaring the month of October as Maryland Family Engagement Month

Future Meetings

The Board will meet on Tuesday, October 14, 2014, for its next regular business meeting.
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: Mr. Philip Kauffman, president; Mrs. Patricia O’Neill, vice president. Members: Mr. Christopher Barclay, Ms. Shirley Brandman, Dr. Judy Docca, Mr. Michael Durso, Mrs. Rebecca Smondrowski, and Ms. Dahlia Huh, student member. Dr. Joshua P. Starr, superintendent and secretary-treasurer. Office of the Board: 301-279-3617.


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