by Robyn Kravitz
On Monday, October 14, parent leaders gathered for the Quarterly Conversation facilitated by the PGCPS Family and School Partnership Office. This meeting offered the opportunity to hear updates directly from Dr. Goldson and allow the parent leaders to ask her questions through a parking lot format. Those in attendance were invited to write their questions on post-it notes, then the staff organized them into topics for Dr. Goldson to answer directly.
During Dr. Goldson’s update, the parent leaders learned that:
- At the request of many parents last year, a working draft has been created of a Parent Code of Conduct. We can expect to see the draft of that in the next week or so.
- Principal’s annual reviews will include whether or not they have parent leaders in place working to organize parents within their school community.
- Overall county-wide enrolled has increased from last year. The exact numbers, however, are not available yet.
- Dr. Goldson will be hosting listening sessions again this fall. The format will be the same as last year. Parents and community members will have the opportunity to give opinions and Dr. Goldson will take notes. She also plans to, again, summarize what she’s heard at each session at the end.
- A homework survey will be coming out next week. She hopes parents will share their honest experiences. PGCPS is looking to provide a health school-home life balance while still maintaining high standards of education and academic opportunities for the students.
- Every principal has created 3 goals for their individual school this year. Dr. Goldson encourages all parents to learn what those three goals are for their school and find ways to support them.
- Dr. Goldson reminded parents that she can always be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. It is helpful if parents say which particular school they are referring to when emailing her. She likes to confidentially have directed conversations with the administration at those specific schools when there are issues that are brought to her attention.
- She encourages parents groups to think outside the box when it comes to engaging the community: digital meetings, short meetings before a performance, etc.
- Dr. Goldson gave a reminder that PGCPS has translators and they are ready to be available for parent group meetings. Inclusiveness is important when organizing families.
- Should you need assistance or see a problem, you are encouraged to reach out to the Outreach Specialist —
- Elementary: 301-952-6583
- Middle School: 301-952-6584
- High School: 301-952-6585
- Charter & Academies can call whichever number the issues feels it best falls under.
- Parents can sign up for PGCPS news on the PGCPS homepage. Dr. Goldson will also be posting inclement weather announcements on her personal twitter page.
- There will be a transportation task force starting. They are tasked with finding creative and outside-the-box solutions to the transportation problems.
- A second task force is also being created. Dr. Goldson wants a parent to lead the calendar creation team instead of central office. She took names at the meeting of parents that are interested in participating.
- And finally, PGCPS is currently piloting an anti-bullying app at a few schools right now. This app allows students to anonymously or intentionally report bully directly on their phones. The program will be expanded to more schools in January with the hopes of pushing it out to all students at the beginning of next school year.
If your school has parent leaders who are interested in attending these meetings, we encourage them to get into contact with April Shannon. The next quarterly conversation is scheduled for January 13, 2020 from 6-7:30pm at John Carroll Elementary Building.