Tuesday, April 23, 2013
I still don't like going to IEP meetings where the school and I figure out what special education services my son will get, but they have gotten exponentially easier than when we started.
My 9-year-old, Jack, is a wonderful fourth grader full of intelligence and humor and fantastic hugs. He is creative and loves to read and is a master at Minecraft. He is also autistic and a student who needs a good amount of help at school, which means he needs an IEP—an Individualized Education Program—to help him access the same curriculum at school that other fourth graders use. Jack's IEP team had our meeting yesterday to hammer out the details of his plan for next year, something that the families of all special education students in Montgomery County do at least once a year. As my husband and I sat with Jack's team and breezed through our meeting, it occurred to me how much IEP meetings have changed for my family. I vividly remember …
Sunday, April 14, 2013
Learn when each Montgomery County public high school will hold its graduation ceremony.
Montgomery County Public Schools on Thursday tweeted a link to a schedule of high school graduations this spring. All ceremonies at DAR Costitution Hall in Washington, D.C. will be streamed online, the school system's website said. The graduations season begins with a ceremony for the school system's Alternative Programs on May 24 and wraps up with June 12 with ceremonies for Watkins Mill High School, the Longview School and the Gateway to College program. Click here to read the full schedule on the MCPS website.
Friday, March 15, 2013
Montgomery County Public Schools Superintendent Joshua Starr said he is disappointed in the County Executive's budget plan.
The amount of aid for county schools proposed by Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett in his fiscal 2014 county budget plan falls short of what's needed, Montgomery County Public Schools Superintendent Joshua Starr said Friday. Leggett's plan calls for a schools budget of $2.23 billion—an increase of $65.8 million, or 3 percent more than the budget approved for the current school year. "The County Executive's recommendation would fund 100 percent of the [school board]'s request," according to Leggett's budget proposal. Click here to read more on Leggett's fiscal 2014 budget plan and here to hear the County Executive discuss the proposal. The proposal is a slight increase in spending for MCPS, to the level required by the state's …
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
Winter storm closes federal and county offices.
Schools and government offices are closed Wednesday, as the first significant snow storm in two years made its way across the region. Montgomery County Public Schools and their administrative offices are closed and all activities in school buildings are canceled, the school system announced. Federal government offices in the Washington, D.C., area will be closed and non-emergency federal employees will be granted excused absences, the Office of Personnel Management said on its website. Montgomery County goverment offices are closed. "Essential personnel should report to work," the county's website said. Montgomery College is closed and testing deadlines will be adjusted by one day, the college's website said. The Universities at Shady …
Wednesday, January 2, 2013
A rundown of what MCPS is serving to students this week.
What's for lunch? This week's menu for Montgomery County Public Schools' elementary school cafeterias is listed below. Visit the full menu for calorie information. The menu for Head Start and pre-kindergarten students varies slightly from the elementary school menu. Visit the MCPS website for middle school lunch, high school lunch and middle and high school breakfast offerings.
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Superintendent Starr is critical of the purpose of the index.
Montgomery County's public schools fared well in the state's most recently released School Progress Index—a new accountability measure whose purpose has been criticized by Montgomery County Public Schools Superintendent Joshua Starr. The School Progress Index—which uses a formula, based mostly on state test scores, to determine how schools are progressing toward academic goals—was released on Monday. Sixty-four percent of the county's public schools made it into the top two (of five) strands—the two strands requiring the least amount of monitoring and support, according to a county schools statement. Overall, the county school system received an index score of 1.014. A score of 1.0 or higher means that the school or school system has met …
Monday, December 17, 2012
A rundown of what MCPS is serving to students this week.
What's for lunch? This week's menu for Montgomery County Public Schools' elementary school cafeterias is listed below. Visit the full menu for calorie information. The menu for Head Start and pre-kindergarten students varies slightly from the elementary school menu. Visit the MCPS website for middle school lunch, high school lunch and middle and high school breakfast offerings through December.
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
An online petition to start county public high schools at 8:15 a.m. already had collected more than 10,000 signatures by Wednesday morning, Dec. 12.
Montgomery County public school parents and students are speaking up about school start times, and the county's school superintendent is responding. An online petition, "Changing Montgomery County, MD's High School Start Times to 8:15 AM or Later," has asked the county school board to "officially recognize the large and compelling body of research regarding teen sleep and academic achievement," and "to start high schools in Montgomery County, MD, after 8:15 [a.m.]." On Tuesday, Superintendent of Schools Joshua P. Starr announced that a work group has been established to study the issue. That will come as good news to the petition's signers, who already numbered more than 10,000 by 10 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 12. "Sleep deprivation, with such …
Superintendent remains confident that he can win over the County Council.
Superintendent Joshua P. Starr’s proposed $2.2 billion fiscal 2014 budget for Montgomery County schools could face a familiar challenge—how to comply with a state law on school funding minimums while winning approval from a County Council determined to rein in spending on schools. Starr's spending plan, unveiled Tuesday, is $10 million—less than half a percent—above the funding floor mandated by the state’s maintenance of effort law, which requires counties’ per-pupil spending to remain the same or increase from year to year. But the half percent increase could have major implications. County school budgets that dip below the funding level can have the difference withheld by the state comptroller when passing through income tax revenues to…
The $2.2 billion budget adds teachers and targets middle school instruction.
A $2.2 billion county schools operating budget proposed Tuesday by Superintendent Joshua P. Starr increases spending to manage growing enrollment, seeks to address persistent achievement gaps and invests in a curriculum aimed at meeting new state and national standards. It also sets the school system up for yet another debate with the Montgomery County Council over spending on K-12 education. “This is a responsible budget that allows us to keep up with growing enrollment, while making strategic investments that will benefit our students today and in the future,” Starr said in a statement. “A budget is a reflection of our values and I know that Montgomery County understands the direct connections between the quality of our schools and …