PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENTS >
Board of Education Discusses First Day of School Preparations; Receives Update on Review of State Use of Assessments and Testing in Public Schools; and Discusses Subdivision Staging Policy
The Montgomery County Board of Education met on Thursday, August 25, 2016, at the Carver Educational Services Center, 850 Hungerford Drive in Rockville. The Board discussed preparations for the first day of school; received an update on the work of the Commission that is reviewing Maryland’s use of assessments and testing in public schools; and provided comments on the Montgomery County Planning Board recommended 2016–2020 Subdivision Staging Policy. The agenda for the meeting, with links to related materials, can be viewed on the Board of Education website. You also can watch the video of the meeting by clicking here.
First Day of School
The Board of Education heard a report from Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) staff on preparations for the first day of school on August 29, 2016. More than 159,000 students are expected to attend classes at our schools on the first day, including one new school, Hallie Wells Middle School in Clarksburg; a newly revitalized and expanded school, Farquhar Middle School in Olney; and two schools with additions including Julius West Middle School in Rockville and Wood Acres Elementary School in Bethesda. MCPS will have more than 1,100 new educators at the start of the 2016–2017 school year.
Use of Assessments and Testing in Public Schools
The Board received an update and held a discussion on the Final Report of the Commission to Review Maryland’s Use of Assessments and Testing in Public Schools. Governor Lawrence J. Hogan, Jr. signed into law House Bill 452 in May 2015, which established the Commission to Review Maryland’s Use of Assessments and Testing in Public Schools (Commission). The Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) was required to survey and assess how much time is spent in each grade level and in each local school system on administering local, state, and federally-mandated assessments. The Commission was established to address eight charges related to student assessment and testing. The Commission made 23 recommendations under the 8 charge areas. Thirteen of the recommendations place responsibilities on MSDE, five place requirements on MCPS, and five require joint action from MSDE and MCPS.
The Commission recommends that processes be put in place to help the state and counties design meaningful assessment programs that meet federal and state mandates, local requirements, and, at the same time, minimize the amount of time students spend taking mandated assessments. The Commission stresses that each assessment a student takes should have a clear purpose, provide information that improves the teaching and learning experience for the student, and be minimally disruptive to the school and classroom. The Board of Education supports some of the recommendations of the Commission to Review Maryland’s Use of Assessment in Public Schools, with amendments that were approved by the Board during the meeting, and believes that MCPS students and staff will benefit from reducing the disruption to school schedules that mandated assessments can cause.
Read the memorandum to the Board
2016–2020 Subdivision Staging Policy
The Board received an update and provided comments on the Montgomery County Planning Board recommended 2016–2020 Subdivision Staging Policy. The Subdivision Staging Policy includes guidelines for three funding sources—School Facility Payment, School Impact Tax, and Recordation Tax—that are allocated to the MCPS Capital Improvements Program (CIP). While these three funding sources account for less than half of the district’s total CIP allocation, they are vital revenue sources to ensure that the many construction projects needed in the school system are funded annually. The Planning Board has recommended several changes to the policy some of which are well aligned with MCPS capacity needs. During the Board’s discussion of the policy, several amendments to the superintendent’s recommendations were proposed and subsequently approved by the Board.
Read the Memorandum to the Board
The Board will hold its next regular business meeting on Tuesday, September 13, 2016. 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. Michael Durso, president; Dr. Judith Docca, vice president. Members: Mr. Christopher Barclay, Mr. Philip Kauffman, Mrs. Patricia O’Neill, Ms. Jill Ortman-Fouse, Mrs. Rebecca Smondrowski, and Mr. Eric Guerci, student member. Dr. Jack R. Smith, superintendent of schools and secretary-treasurer. Office of the Board: 301-279-3617.
<<Back to browse