Board of Education Sets Calendar for 2013-2014; Takes Tentative Action on a Policy, and Discusses State Regulatory Changes Concerning Suspensions

November 16, 2012
The Montgomery County Board of Education met on Tuesday, November 13, 2012, at the Carver Educational Services Center, 850 Hungerford Drive in Rockville. Among other items, the Board set the school year calendar for 2013-2014, received an update on state regulatory changes to suspension regulations, approved the development of various pilot courses, and discussed legislation.  The agenda for the meeting, with links to related materials, can be viewed on the Board of Education website.

2013-2014 School Year Calendar

The Board adopted the calendar for the 2013-2014 school year. The school year will begin on Monday, August 26, 2013, and is scheduled to end on Thursday, June 12, 2014. Spring Break will run from Monday, April 14, 2014 through Monday, April 21, 2014. The calendar was developed in partnership with the Montgomery County Council of PTAs, the school district’s three employee associations, and the Montgomery County Region of the Maryland Association of Student Councils, as well as other community members and school system leadership.   Read the report to the Board and see the adopted calendar.

Update on State Regulatory Changes to Suspensions

The Board received an update and engaged in a conversation on the Maryland State Board of Education’s proposed regulations on discipline and suspension, and its impact on MCPS. The proposed regulations are designed to reduce the number of long-term out-of-school suspensions for non-violent incidents, to eliminate disproportionate suspensions of minority students and students with disabilities, and to ensure that all students receive appropriate educational services during suspension or expulsion within identified timelines for the disciplinary process. MCPS has actively provided feedback and recommendations to the State Board on this proposed regulation for the past two years. While MCPS has one of the lowest suspension rates in the state (2.6 percent for 2010-2011), the intent of the proposed regulation represents issues that MCPS has actively addressed for years, including the fact that African American and Hispanic students are suspended at much greater rates than White and Asian students. MCPS is convening a Suspension Regulation Implementation Team to identify and recommend changes to existing policies, regulations, practice, and procedures to comply with the proposed regulations.  View the Board report and proposed regulation.

Policy DNA, Disposition of Board of Education Property

The Board of Education tentatively approved changes to Police DNA, which guides the disposal of Board of Education property. The major change would require the Superintendent of Schools to report the sale of any property that results in proceeds of more than $25,000. The policy will now be distributed for public comment and will be considered for final approval at a future meeting. See the changes in the policy

Approval of Pilot Courses

The Board of Education approved the development of pilot courses and designated as active or restricted courses those that have completed the pilot process successfully.  The Board approved the development of 11 new high school pilot courses. The Board also approved four courses that have gone through the pilot process as restricted at specific high schools. Read the memo to the Board and the list of courses.

Items of Legislation
The Board also discussed items of legislation that will be a part of the 2013 General Assembly, which begins in January. The Board voted to oppose a bill that would change the number of members on the Board and would change the way some of those members are elected. Currently, the five members of the Board that represent specific residential districts are elected by a countywide vote. The bill would change it so those members are elected only by voters in their district. The bill would also increase the number of members from seven to nine (not including the Student Member of the Board) by adding two “at-large” positions. The Board took no position on a Bill that would increase the amount of money each member receives for serving on the Board from $18,000 to $25,000 a year. Read the Items of Legislation Report


The Board of Education approved the following administrative appointments:

Bei (Susan) Chen, acting controller, Department of Financial Services, as controller, Department of Financial Services
Randy C. Aleshevich, data specialist, Baltimore County Public Schools, as coordinator, Office of Share Accountability.


The Board approved the following resolutions:

A resolution in honor of veterans
-A resolution declaring Nov. 11–17 as American Education Week
-A resolution declaring Nov. 12-16 as School Psychology Awareness Week

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. John Mannes, student member. Dr. Joshua P. Starr, superintendent and secretary-treasurer. Office of the Board: 301-279-3617.

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