Notes on the October 24 Board of Education Meeting

by Laura Rammelsberg

To view the agenda in BoardDocs, go here.

Attendees: Board Members Ahmed, Boston, Burroughs, Hernandez, Murray, Paige, Quinteros- Grady, Roche, Valentine, Wallace, Williams, Dr. Wiseman, Dr. Eubanks
CEO Dr. Maxwell

Ms. Eubanks had a friend who passed today and could not attend the meeting.

NEWSBREAK

At 5:39 in the video. Our New 3D Scholars Program – highlights partnership between PGCPS, Prince George’s Community College and UMUC that allows students to get a Bachelor’s Degree for $10,000.

For more information about the 3D Scholars Program visit: http://www.pgcps.org/3dscholars/

REPORT OF THE CHAIR

At 9:49. Honored lives of four individuals – Kayla Holman (G. James Gholson Middle School student), Ms. Owens (educator at Gwynn Park MS), Shelly Miley (father of Dr. Kara Libby, Executive Director of Teaching and Learning, PGCPS) and Ms. Murphy (daughter of Kim Murphy, Sasscer building services staff.)

Fairmont Heights HS – new high school was dedicated attended by alumni from 1940s and 1950s were there. Video of the Fairmont Heights HS Ribbon Cutting can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YuImqO3DUTQ

Oct. 16 – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen at Greenbelt Middle School announcement of the award of $25 million US Department of Education grant titled “Great Teachers, Great Leaders, Great Schools.” Funds will go to highest need schools and develop leaders to help our children thrive and succeed.  

Video about $25 million grant announcement can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X851MuCwtaA

At 14:29. Board Member Burroughs – recognized former School Board Chair Owen Johnson, who is in the audience.  

Board Member Wallace – recognized 12-year old student from North Forestville Elementary, Ms. Dashai Morton. For her birthday, she raised 3000 cases of water for victims of Hurricane Maria and Irma in Puerto Rico. Proclamation made in honor of her.  To see more information about Ms. Morton’s story visit: http://wjla.com/news/local/prince-georges-county-sixth-grader-collects-water-for-hurricane-victims-in-puerto-rico

Board Member Williams – Greatness is happening all over PGCPS.  Law passed to implement green cleaning in schools throughout the State.  PGCPS is the first organization in the State to complete the green cleaning certification. Ten custodians completed a green certification course, which help achieve this goal, she recognized them.

Male Educator Network – began 4 years ago. Only 2% of teachers across the nation are men of color.  Effort to support and recruit more African American male teachers in the classroom. (Showed video about the network). #MENOFPGCPS Dr. Eubanks recognized the work they are doing.

UPCOMING EVENTS

At 3:37.

  • Oct 25 – Largo HS Public Hearing for Equity in Funding for School System (state-wide) Kirwan Commission how district fund education and ensure equitable resources to students.
  • Nov 7 – Capital Improvement Program Meeting @ 5 pm
  • Nov 9 – Board Meeting @ 1:00 pm
  • Jan 4 – Board Work Session @ 5 pm

POLICY, LEGAL, LEGISLATVE BOARD COMMITTEE REPORT

At 32:14.

Board Member Valentine (Chair) Board Member Quinteros-Grady (Vice Chair). Explained what it does.  Reviews strategy for reviewing policy, development of new policy, align policy development with 2016 – 2020 Plan, review & provide recommendations for student code of conduct.  They adopt general priorities of the Board. The receive recommendations from other committees and Board Members. They concentrate on four areas:

  1. Student Equity (students & teachers)
  2. Grading Policy & Implementation
  3. County-Based Legislation & Policy (relationship between Board and County Council); includes transportation, sidewalks near schools, parks, libraries.
  4. State of MD Legislation; includes Board configuration.

Active year so far.  The Committee meetings are public and everyone is invited to come listen or testify.  Minutes for those meetings are available.    

REPORT OF THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

At 38:35.

$25 million grant will go to high need schools. Exactly the type of investment the schools need.  Commended colleagues for securing the grant.

October is National Principals Month – thank a principal by Oct 31.

Nov 18 at Northwestern HS – PGCPS Family Institute – invites public to come.

Congratulations to student athletes Wise and Flower HS are undefeated this season.  You can see more sports at “PG13” http://www.Pgcps.org/PG13

PUBLIC COMMENTS ON NON-AGENDA ITEMS

4 Registered Speakers

At 41:34. Teacher at Mary Harris “Mother Jones” Elementary, comment on Library Media Customer Service
Being a library media specialist at two schools is challenging and hinders his students’ progress.  He thought he could handle the workload but could not, so transferred to a single (different) school.  He asked the Board to look into funding and staffing for these positions, as he would like the children to continue to receive innovative programs that he used to be able to bring to his students, but can no longer.

At 45:00. PGCPS Parent, Comment on PGCPS Talented and Gifted (TAG) Program
The integrity of program is being compromised. Took her child out of Cesar Chavez to put into a TAG center. There are only two 3rd grade teachers and this school and because of the number of students, 30 children were placed in the “regular” classroom and non-TAG children were being placed in the second, TAG-designated class, but they are not all TAG students.  She would like the TAG children to be counted separately. Parents have discussed pulling their children from TAG program.  She feels cheated. Asked Board to consider how the TAG program should be run.

At 47:49. Theresa Dudley, President of Prince George’s County Education Association (PGCEA).
It is important that for people to come out and speak out at the meeting on 10/25/17. This year has been a good school year so far.  Asked the Board to consider certain items for 2018 – 2019 budget, which is under analysis now.

Overcrowding in some of the County Schools needs to be addressed.  The needs of Special Education teachers in County needs to be addressed as well, as there are not enough subs to cover for them when they need to plan and not enough Co-teachers.

Plan ahead for March 19, 2017 – There will be a March in Annapolis when the Kerwin Report comes out.

PGCEA is hosting the NEA Black Issue Conference at the Gaylord Hotel April 26-29. Addresses the need of African American students and educators.  See her for more information about the conference.

At 52:05. Comment on school names.
He drives by PGCPS school buildings with names that offend him.  Proposes changing schools names of either Confederates or Confederate / Southern sympathizers.  These are people our children should not look up to and honor. Asked the Board to correct the lies and mistakes of past generations. Examples: John Wilkes Booth. Mary Surratt or derivatives of her last name. Samuel Mudd.  

ITEM 4.1 – 4.5 CONSENT AGENDA

At 55:05.

ALL in favor of motion.

School Psychology Awareness Week, November 6-10, 2017
National Hunger and Homelessness Week, November 13-17, 2017
National Native American Heritage Month, November 2017
Maryland Emancipation Day, November 2017
American Education Week, November 13-17, 2017

ITEM 5.1-5.3 BUDGET CONSENT AGENDA

Board Member Burroughs – comment on 5.3 Eleanor Roosevelt Air Conditioning Issues. He went to Friendly HS and it had one entire wing where AC is not working.

ALL in favor of motion.

ITEM 8.1 NEW BUSINESS (FIRST READER)
Renewal of CMIT South

ALL in favor of motion

ITEM 10 MOTION TO APPROVE ACTIONS IN EXECUTIVE SESSION

ALL in favor of motion

**********MEETING ADJOURNED**********

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