Board Approves Policy on Bullying, Makes Facilities Changes

March 10, 2010
The Montgomery County Board of Education met on Tuesday, March 9, and, among other items, took final action on a new policy, Bullying, Harassment, or Intimidation. The Board approved a report on preliminary plans for the Herbert Hoover Middle School modernization project and made decisions on boundary recommendations for Lois P. Rockwell and Bethesda elementary schools and for an Oakland Terrace Elementary School satellite location at Sligo Middle School. The Board also approved recommended positions on state education legislation.

Final Action, Policy JHF, Bullying, Harassment, or Intimidation
The Board of Education adopted the new Policy JHF, Bullying, Harassment, or Intimidation, following a period of public comment. The policy sets forth the Board’s commitment to maintaining a school environment free from bullying, harassment, or intimidation and directs the school system to implement a systemwide prevention and intervention program. A number of suggestions received—in areas such as timelines for investigation, notification of incidents, staff training, accountability, and consequences—were incorporated into the policy. "The Board took action to send a clear, strong message that we are deeply committed to addressing concerns about bullying so all our students can feel safe in their learning environment," said Shirley Brandman, chair of the Board's Policy Committee.  "We recognize this policy is just the first, but important, step to building a strong foundation that encourages our schools to recognize and respond appropriately whenever bullying occurs."
Presentation Plan for Herbert Hoover MS Modernization Project
The Board approved the report on preliminary plans for the Herbert Hoover Middle School modernization project.

Facilities Decisions
The Board approved recommendations related to the following facilities:

  • The middle school assignment for Lois P. Rockwell Elementary School will be changed from Rocky Hill Middle School to John T. Baker Middle School.
  • The western portion of the Bethesda Elementary School service area will be reassigned to Bradley Hills Elementary School. The boundary change will be implemented in August 2013 when a classroom addition to Bradley Hills is completed.
  • Kindergarten students from Oakland Terrace Elementary School will attend school in the lower level of Sligo Middle School for the 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 school years.

Recommended Positions on Education Legislation

The Board discussed and took positions on a range of proposed state legislation that would affect Montgomery County Public Schools. Areas of proposed legislation included charter schools; construction/maintenance; fiscal retirement/benefits, revenue, and tax credit; human resources; Race to the Top; school safety; student athletics and curriculum; and other areas. "The Board is actively engaged on items of legislation and testifying in Annapolis," said Board President Patricia O'Neill.  "We are advocating strongly for our students’ needs and to protect their educational futures."

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Montgomery County Board of Education: Ms. Patricia O’Neill, president; Mr. Christopher Barclay, vice president. Members: Ms. Laura Berthiaume, Ms. Shirley Brandman, Dr. Judy Docca, Mr. Michael Durso, Mr. Phil Kauffman, and Mr. Timothy Hwang, student member. Dr. Jerry D. Weast, superintendent and secretary-treasurer. Office of the Board: 301-279-3617. 
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.

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