As part of Charles County Public Schools focus on academic achievement and career readiness, students can participate in student council and student government activities. These activities include promoting leadership and teamwork, serving the community and are often overseen by teachers who are committed to nurturing future leaders.

Two of these committed Charles County Public Schools teachers – Gary Winsett of Thomas Stone High School and April Thompson from Milton M. Somers Middle School – were recently honored by the Maryland Association of Student Councils (MASC) for their support of student leadership.

Winsett, a social studies teacher at Stone and advisor to the Charles County Association of Student Councils (CCASC), was honored with the 2016 Nora Murray Unsung Hero Award. The award honors an individual selected by the MASC executive board who has gone above and beyond to promote student leadership and civic engagement. Winsett is a longtime teacher at Stone and is the CCASC regional advisor. As the CCASC advisor for the past six school years, Winsett oversees the middle and high school student leaders, student liaisons to the Board of Education and also works with student government advisors at the middle and high school levels.

Winsett was surprised with the honor April 7 during an awards banquet at the annual MASC convention. “It is a very prestigious award as it goes to someone who does a lot for the Maryland Association of Student Councils. That’s why I was so honored to get it. It is a tremendous honor and was a total surprise,” he said. The award was established in 2012 after Catherine Nora Murray, a former regional student council advisor and executive director of the MASC. Murray now oversees student council programs and works in parent and community engagement for Baltimore County Public Schools.

At the awards banquet, Thompson was named the MASC 2015-16 Maryland Middle School Advisor of the Year. She is a social studies teacher at Somers and serves as the student government association co-advisor at the school. She was recognized for her commitment to promote student involvement at school, as well as at regional and state levels, and for helping to inspire young leaders to become involved in student leadership activities.

Winsett wrote a letter on behalf of Thompson’s nomination and referred to her enthusiasm as infectious. “Her guidance and support are key ingredients to the success of the student leaders at Somers. She is a dedicated advisor who gives all of her energy, enthusiasm, and guidance to help shape her students into effective young leaders,” Winsett wrote.

Under Thompson’s guidance, Somers student leaders are active at the county level. The Somers delegation is one of the most active middle school student leader groups in CCASC activities. Thompson encourages her students to be active leaders at school, in their communities and in statewide activities. Additionally, she is well respected among her colleagues for her role as a student government advisor and excellence in the classroom.

This is the third consecutive year that a middle school student government advisor from Charles County Public Schools has received the state award. Winsett and Thompson were presented with their awards April 7 at the MASC Convention held in Ocean City. More than 100 Charles County Public Schools students attended the convention. For more information about MASC, visit http://mdstudentcouncils.com/.

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,300 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Pamela K. Murphy, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

Four Charles County Public high school students advance to the national Skills USA competition after winning first place at the annual Skills USA Maryland Leadership and Skills Conference held April 17. They will represent Charles County Public Schools at the National Leadership and Skills Competition scheduled for June 20-24 in Louisville, Ky.

The first-place winners are

  • Elizabeth Lopez and Fiona Quenano, juniors, North Point High School, American Spirit;
  • Jewel Washington, senior, North Point, Early Childhood Studies; and
  • Alyssa Rabasco, junior, Robert D. Stethem Educational Center, Employment Application Process.

These students advanced to the state level of competition after placing in the top three scorers in their respective categories at the regional event. They earned first place at the state event from among more than 1,000 career and technology education students who competed.

The following students also placed at the state event:

  • Abdullah Ghori, senior, North Point, Cabinetmaking, second place;
  • Mercedes Clark, Angelique Ogunsemowo and Amy Zheng, seniors, North Point, Career Pathways/Health Science, second place;
  • Madison Stanley, junior, and Akira Moss and Tiara White, seniors, North Point, Career Pathways/Natural Resources, Agriculture, Foods, second place;
  • Elizabeth Hughley and Alyssa Raqueno, seniors, and Elizabeth Varela, junior, North Point, Community Service, second place;
  • Estefany Garcia and Dylan McCabe, seniors, and Ethan Snider, sophomore, North Point, Crime Scene Investigation, second place;
  • Jerod Neal and Elijah Vaughan, seniors, North Point, Digital Cinema Production, second place;
  • Morgan Kline, senior, North Point, Early Childhood Studies, second place;
  • Shelby Davis, Jordan Lloyd and Jenna Williams, seniors, North Point, Outstanding Chapter, second place;
  • Lauren Davis, Teya Regala and Taylor Vauss, juniors, Stethem, Promotional Bulletin Board, second place;
  • Amara Gammons and Andrew Fan, freshmen, Skye Corbin and Nathan Hubbell, juniors, and James Adkins and Luke Gibson, seniors, North Point, Quiz Bowl, second place;
  • Brandon Cundiff, Joy Kim, Miguel Lopez and Roman Morgan, seniors, North Point, Teamworks, second place;
  • Tayyab Nawaz and Stephen Williams, juniors, North Point, Career Pathways/Construction, third place;
  • Carla Arquero, Maxwell Palmer and Esha Satam, juniors, North Point, Career Pathways/Science & Math, third place;
  • Justin Arter and Matthew Bowie, seniors, North Point, Criminal Justice, third place;
  • Maren Angala, senior, North Point, Early Childhood Studies, third place;
  • Suha Ansari, Catherine Co, Emilia Milheim and Lean Pennington, seniors, North Point, Health Knowledge Bowl, third place;
  • Derek Nunn, senior, North Point, Industrial Motor Control, third place;
  • Cheyenne Scott, senior, North Point, Internetworking, third place;
  • Brittany Henderson, senior, North Point, Nurse Assisting, third place;
  • Daphine Henderson, senior, North Point, Welding Sculpture, third place;
  • Shelby Burgess, Jasmond Gray, Jaren Jamison and Chad Potter, seniors, Stethem, Broadcast News, fourth place;
  • Victoria McGinnis, junior, Stethem, T Shirt Design, sixth place; and
  • Jonathan Corbett, junior, and Jordan Queen, senior, Stethem, Digital Cinema, tenth place.

The Skills USA regional competition is a showcase event for career and technology students in the tri-county area. Students compete locally and continue through the state and national levels. The philosophy of the competition is to reward students for excellence, to involve industry in directly evaluating student performance and to train students for employer needs.

Skills USA is a national partnership of students, teachers and industry working together to ensure a skilled work force. The organization serves more than 300,000 high school and college students, as well as professional members, nationwide. As part of the Skills USA program, students gain experiences in leadership, teamwork, citizenship and character development. The organization focuses on quality at work, high ethical standards, superior work skills, lifelong education and pride in the dignity of work.

For more information on the Skills USA program, visit http://www.skillsusa.org/.

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,300 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

More than 20 Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) students were named Ruth Ann Hall Champion Scholar Award winners during a recognition ceremony April 19 at the Board of Education’s monthly meeting. The Education Association of Charles County (EACC) established the award program to honor the late Hall, a former president of the association.

The following students received the award:

  • Jayren Dawkins, seventh grade, Theodore G. Davis Middle School;
  • Lelany Wells, eighth grade, Davis;
  • Jared Kutsushi, eighth grade, Davis;
  • Keylin Marquez Dubon, eighth grade, Davis;
  • Josh Dixon, eighth grade, John Hanson Middle School;
  • Jessica Wilson, sixth grade, Matthew Henson Middle School;
  • Louis “Lou” Bassett, sixth grade, Henson;
  • Jaylah Fields, sixth grade; Henson
  • Raell J. Moreland, eighth grade; Henson
  • Ayanna Ross, eighth grade, Mattawoman Middle School;
  • Aiden Lehn, eighth grade, Mattawoman,
  • Gary Boykin, eighth grade, Mattawoman;
  • Kayla Windsor, seventh grade, Piccowaxen Middle School;
  • Kailee Marshall, seventh grade, Piccowaxen;
  • Julie Hutson, seventh grade, Piccowaxen;
  • Kalei Marable, eighth grade, General Smallwood Middle School;
  • Morganne Douglas, eighth grade, Smallwood;
  • John Bogart, eighth grade, Smallwood;
  • Antonio “Tony” Baker, sixth grade, Milton M. Somers Middle School;
  • Katie Maljak, seventh grade, Somers;
  • Christopher Walker, eighth grade, Somers;
  • Gerald Wade, eighth grade, Robert D. Stethem Educational Center;
  • Christopher Combs, sixth grade, Benjamin Stoddert Middle School; and
  • Ahmari White, sixth grade, Stoddert.

The EACC created the Ruth Ann Hall Champion Scholar Awards as a memorial to Hall, who had a 20-year career as a teacher with CCPS. In 1986, Hall was the recipient of the Washington Post’s Agnes Meyer Outstanding Teacher of the Year award when she was a teacher at Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy Elementary School. She also taught at Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer Elementary School and Mattawoman Middle School. The EACC established the award program for middle school students because Hall last taught at Mattawoman.

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,300 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

 

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Pamela K. Murphy, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

Two Charles County public schools – Dr. Samuel A. Mudd Elementary School and North Point High School – were honored last week by the Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education (MAEOE) as 2016 Maryland Green Schools. Dr. Mudd and North Point join 72 other schools statewide honored April 21 through the Maryland Green Schools program.

Green Schools are honored for their commitment to developing stewards of the Earth and reducing environmental impacts. Maryland Green Schools must complete a two-year application process to secure the designation. The process requires schools to demonstrate and document a continuous effort to integrate sustainable best management practices, classroom integration of environmental issues, curriculum and instruction, professional development opportunities, conservation practices and evidence of existing community partnerships that help enhance environmental learning.

As part of the application process, students are involved in projects that help to save energy, reduce waste and promote other sustainable activities. Through the Green School program, schools are encouraged to use school grounds as an extension of the classroom and for outdoor learning experiences.

“Students, teachers, school personnel, parents and community partners are working together to create a positive and lasting environment at school. Their actions are essential to becoming a Maryland Green School,” Laura Johnson Collard, MAEOE Executive Director, said about the program.

Environmentally friendly practices in place at Dr. Mudd include a no waste lunch, recycling campaigns, student and staff maintenance of a butterfly and turtle garden, and the launch of a Green Club. Student members in the club meet weekly to plan environmentally friendly efforts for the school community.

At North Point, students work together to support their local environment through hands-on and engaging experiences and activities. These activities range from protecting and conserving local watersheds and marine sanctuaries to conversation projects. Students have also helped to conserve grounds at the school by planting trees and perennials native to the area.

Ian Buter is the content specialist for science for Charles County Public Schools. He said a goal for Charles County Public Schools is for 100 percent Green School representation. “It is very exciting that both North Point and Dr. Mudd have joined the other Green Schools in Charles County. Their dedication to environmental stewardship is an exemplar model for all of our schools,” Buter said.

Green Schools are recognized for using resources to educate students and staff on environmental challenges in Maryland, modeling environmental practices in building and landscape design, and demonstrating how to maintain these practices. Additionally, Green Schools are recognized for building and maintaining partnerships within their local communities to enhance environmental learning and to design programs to result in a healthier environment.

Dr. Mudd and North Point join 10 other Maryland Green Schools in Charles County with current certification. They are Gale-Bailey, Dr. James Craik, Indian Head, Arthur Middleton and J.C. Parks elementary schools, General Smallwood, Piccowaxen and Milton M. Somers middle schools, and Thomas Stone and Westlake high schools. The Nanjemoy Creek Environmental Education Center is also a certified Maryland Green Center.

All Maryland schools receiving Green School certification will be recognized May 13 at the Maryland Green School Youth Summit at Sandy Point State Park in Annapolis. Each school will receive a Green Schools flag, as well as a Governor’s Citation to recognize their achievement.

The Maryland Green Schools Program was founded in 1999 to foster a student-led integrated approach to authentic learning that incorporates local environmental issue investigation and teacher professional development with environmental best management practices and community stewardship. The program also supports schools in meeting the Maryland State Department of Education’s (MSDE) environmental literacy standards established through the Governor’s Partnership for Children in Nature. For more information on the Green Schools program and application process, visit http://www.maeoe.org/.

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,300 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Pamela K. Murphy, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

Neighbors help with all sorts of things — keeping an emergency spare key, producing a cup of sugar when you’re out, lending a professional baseball field when your team is in a jam.

When a safety issue arose with the backstops on the diamonds of St. Charles High School, players looked over their shoulders to find the Regency Furniture Stadium standing in the background. Varsity players were about to get the opportunity of their hitting and fielding lives when the management of Southern Maryland Blue Crabs offered the Spartans the chance to use the field.

When the stadium was built, it was meant to be multifaceted, open for organizations in the tri-county area that needed it, said Courtney Knichel, Blue Crabs general manager. The Spartans needed a place to play. “You guys are our neighbors, come over and play ball,” Knichel said.

“It’s an opportunity not a lot of kids get,” said Zachary Bush, head coach of the St. Charles High School varsity baseball team and a social studies teacher at Benjamin Stoddert Middle School. “It’s an opportunity, me as a player, never got — to play in a professional ball park.”

The Spartans have played a couple of games at the stadium and are slated to host Maurice J. McDonough High School at 4:30 p.m. April 27 and Thomas Stone High School at 4:30 p.m. April 29. Blue Crabs management is looking into getting more high school baseball teams playing time at the stadium. The Southern Maryland Athletic Conference championships will be played at the stadium May 11. Relationships between the Blue Crabs and high school teams in the region haven’t been explored too much in the past, but Knichel is aiming to change that. “We’re exploring further partnerships,” she said. For now, the Spartans are breaking in the field.

“I told them to have as much fun as they can,” Bush said. “It should make you confident to play in a nice facility … the ball isn’t going to take a bad hop.” Bush, who is assisted in coaching duties by Mike Colatruglio, a St. Charles social studies teacher, said he can see that confidence in his players — many of which are underclassmen — 10 of the 16 on the varsity squad are freshmen or sophomores.

The seniors and juniors are laying the foundation on which the younger players will build, Bush said. The school is in its second year, St. Charles juniors and seniors came from potentially stronger programs at their former schools. St. Charles seniors Gage Dietrich and Cody Hill, centerfielder and shortstop, respectively, and junior Dominic Ford, the Spartans catcher, think playing on the Blue Crabs home turf is great.

They grew up playing baseball on sandlots, moved on to Little League, and have been in the stands at professional contests, but never really thought they would get the chance to play in such facilities. “The whole feel and atmosphere is different,” Hill said of playing at the home field of the Blue Crabs. “You feel like its MLB or something,” Dietrich said. “Or college,” Ford added.

“It makes you see the game differently,” Dietrich said. “It’s just a great view.”

“We’re just stoked to play,” Hill said. “Baseball is baseball no matter where you play.”

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,300 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Pamela K. Murphy, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

 

Tiarra McIlwain, a senior at Thomas Stone High School, was named the Career Research and Development (CRD) Student of the Year for 2016 at the annual employer/employee breakfast held April 22. McIlwain worked at Journeys, a shoe and clothing store in the St. Charles Towne Center.

McIlwain was selected for the award following three levels of competition both at the school and county levels. Committees composed of staff members, community members and business representatives interviewed students.

“I loved the experience, and I had fun as I learned a lot of skills,” McIlwain said following the announcement.

McIlwain’s supervisor at Journeys, Demetre Wells, said Tiarra excelled as a salesperson and consistently lived up to Journeys core value of driving sales with every action. Wells commended her for her work ethic and said she exceeded the maximum expectation for employees. “I loved to see her clock in for work and I am going to hate to see her leave,” Wells said.

Student nominees, all seniors, are selected by the high schools and forwarded to a school system committee for consideration. Nominees were Jordan Lancaster of Henry E. Lackey High School; Amayia Butler, Selena Thomas and Amber Vasquez of La Plata High School; Jason Thompson of Maurice J. McDonough High School; Autumn Cantor of St. Charles High School; Meagan Auth and Tiarra McIlwain of Thomas Stone High School; and Tayha Toppin of Westlake High School. The CRD Advisory Committee interviewed and selected three finalists: McIlwain, Auth and Toppin.

Employers and student employees gathered at the Greater Waldorf Jaycees Community Center for the annual breakfast. There were 82 students participating in the 2015-16 school year program and 62 different employers supervised the students. The CRD program was formerly known as the Cooperative Education Program, and provides a bridge from school to work, classroom instruction, work experience and on-the-job training related to a student’s career goals.

The Cooperative Education Program was launched in 1971 at La Plata and Lackey high schools, expanded to Thomas Stone in 1972 and then to McDonough in 1979. Westlake started offering the program in 1998. North Point launched the program in 2009 with its first senior class, and St. Charles High School added the program this school year. Students interested in the program can contact the CRD coordinator at their school.

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,300 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Pamela K. Murphy, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

 

 

Six Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) teachers were recently named 2016 Outstanding Math and Science Teacher Honorees by Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative (SMECO) for their accomplishments in the area of mathematics and science teaching. One teacher is selected annually at each level – elementary, middle and high school – for excellence in mathematics and science teaching.

Honored as Outstanding Mathematics Teachers of the Year are Linda Tavares, Arthur Middleton Elementary School; David Wood, Milton M. Somers Middle School; and Adam Frisbee, Thomas Stone High School.

Honored as Outstanding Science Teachers of the Year are Margo Barbone, Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy Elementary School; Amy Arnold, Somers; and Michelle Schoenbauer, La Plata High School.

Tavares has been teaching at Middleton for the past 11 years and joined CCPS as a teacher in 2005. She currently teaches fourth-grade mathematics, literacy, social studies, speaking and listening. Tavares has served as a team leader for seven years and coach of the school math team. She also coaches the mathematics, engineering and science achievement (MESA) program at Middleton and presents at elementary-school level professional development sessions for teachers. Tavares has a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and a master’s degree in instructional technology. She also holds an Advanced Professional Certificate through the Maryland State Department of Education.

Wood has been teaching at Somers for the past eight school years and joined CCPS as a teacher in 2008. He currently teaches Algebra I and works with eighth-grade students. He has also worked with seventh graders and taught Algebra II and grade-level inclusion classes. Wood is the math department chair, a position he has held for the past three years. Additionally, he has sponsored the Lego Robotics club and chess team, and has also coached both the boys’ and girls’ track teams. Wood also helps to write curriculum, formative assessment questions and presents at school- and countywide professional development sessions. He is also enrolled in the CCPS Leadership Extension Application and Development (LEAP) program which supports teachers interested in pursuing administrative opportunities.

Frisbee has been teaching at Charles County high schools for the past six years. He has been teaching at Stone for the past two school years and previously taught for four years at Maurice J. McDonough High School. Frisbee works with students in grades 9-12 in Advanced Placement (AP) calculus, pre-calculus and Algebra I classes. He is the assistant outdoor track and field coach and is a senior certified representative for the Education Association of Charles County (EACC) teacher’s union. Frisbee has served as a Maryland State Education Association (MSEA) state delegate and has facilitated high-school level mathematics professional development sessions. He also helps to write curriculum and was a member of the pre-calculus curriculum writing team.

Barbone began her career in education as a fourth-grade teacher with Prince George’s County Public Schools. She joined CCPS in 1996 at Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy. She currently teaches science to students in grades 3-5 and also teaches fifth-grade math. Barbone has been an elementary-level science teacher for the past 12 years and also worked as a Title I math resource teacher for six years. At Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy, Barbone sponsors a Lego Robotics team and works with students in the MESA program.

Arnold joined CCPS as a science teacher at Matthew Henson Middle School in 2006. She has been teaching at Somers for the past four school years and is a seventh-grade life science teacher. She has also taught earth and space science classes and participates in professional development sessions for middle school science teachers. Arnold is also the SeaPerch coach at Somers. SeaPerch is an underwater robotics program in which students build and operate an underwater remotely operated vehicle (ROV). A SeaPerch team Arnold coaches was invited to compete at the national level after receiving an overall regional award at a recent regional competition. Additionally, Arnold is also active in Relay for Life activities and sponsors the group at Somers.

Schoenbauer has been teaching with CCPS for the past seven years, all of which she has served at La Plata. She currently teaches students enrolled in the Project Lead the Way Biomedical Science program and is the student government advisor. Schoenbauer has also taught biology and earth science classes at La Plata and serves as the It’s Academic coach. She also works at the James E. Richmond Science Center. Schoenbauer has a master’s degree in educational leadership and is pursuing a gifted and talented certification through Langston University.

The teachers were nominated for the awards by staff, students and parents. Each was chosen for their outstanding performance in the areas of creativity, rapport with students, enthusiasm for teaching, professionalism, and for using innovative techniques and teaching methods in the classroom. They will be honored by SMECO at an April 20 reception.

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,300 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Pamela K. Murphy, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

Graduation ceremonies for high school seniors in the Charles County Public Schools Class of 2016 are planned for June 2-4 at the Convocation Center at North Point High School in Waldorf.

North Point High School’s ceremony is Thursday, June 2. Ceremonies for Westlake, Henry E. Lackey and Maurice J. McDonough high schools will be held on Friday, June 3. Seniors from St. Charles, La Plata and Thomas Stone high schools will graduate in ceremonies scheduled for Saturday, June 4.

North Point’s ceremony is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Thursday, June 2. The school will be closed for all North Point students, as well for children who attend the childcare center at North Point, on June 2.

The schedule for Friday, June 3 is

  • Westlake, 9 a.m.;
  • Lackey, 2 p.m.; and
  • McDonough, 7 p.m.

The schedule for Saturday, June 4 is

  • St. Charles, 9 a.m.;
  • La Plata, 2 p.m.; and
  • Stone, 7 p.m.

All Charles County public high schools will be closed on Friday, June 3. The childcare center at North Point will be closed June 3. The Robert D. Stethem Educational Center will also be closed on June 3 for students.

Additionally, students who attend William A. Diggs Elementary School and Theodore G. Davis Middle School will not have school on Friday, June 3. This is to accommodate expected graduation traffic on the Davis, Diggs and North Point campuses.

All graduation ceremonies will be streamed live on the Charles County Public Schools website, www.ccboe.com. North Point is located at 2500 Davis Road, Waldorf, Md., 20603. Parents with questions about a specific school’s planned graduation activities should contact the office at their child’s school.

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,300 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Pamela K. Murphy, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

Superintendent Kimberly Hill announced three administrative changes this week, including the retirement of Assistant Superintendent of Supporting Services Keith Hettel, the resignation of Assistant Superintendent of School Administration Sylvia Lawson and the promotion of Principal Kristin Shields.

Hettel told the Board of Education on April 19 that he plans to retire June 30 from his 41-year career with Charles County Public Schools (CCPS). A former principal of the year, Hettel previously served as assistant superintendent of human resources, director of educational options, principal at Gale-Bailey and William B. Wade elementary schools and as an elementary school teacher. As assistant superintendent of supporting services, Hettel manages the maintenance and operations of all school system facilities as well as construction of new schools and renovations.

In announcing his retirement, Hettel said, “I have enjoyed every day in all the positions I have held. The people I have met and worked with are the best you can ever call friends and colleagues.”

Lawson also stated on Tuesday her plan to resign from CCPS effective June 30 to pursue other career options. Lawson, who was Hill’s first administrative appointment in 2013, previously served as principal of Northern High School in Calvert County and as a principal, vice principal and teacher in CCPS. As assistant superintendent of school administration, Lawson’s responsibilities include working with principals and vice principals, handling parent complaints and oversight of student services.

The Board of Education on Tuesday approved the appointment of Shields as Director of Title I. Shields, who was recently named as a National Distinguished Principal for Maryland, has served the past five years as principal of Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy Elementary School, a Title I school. Shields starts her new position on July 1.

Earlier this month, Assistant Superintendent of Finance and Business Paul Balides retired after more than 20 years of service to CCPS. Hill appointed Randy Sotomayor as executive director of finance and business effective April 1.

Each school year, the Superintendent provides the Board with recommendations for administrative appointments, including principal and vice principal changes. Additional appointments and transfers will be announced in June and July.

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,300 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 35 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX Coordinator and Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Pamela Murphy, Section 504 Coordinator (employees/adults), at Charles County Public Schools, central office building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, Maryland 20646. 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

The Board of Education presented four resolutions to Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) staff at its April 19 meeting. The resolutions are presented by the Board annually. The following resolutions were presented:

  • Administrative Professionals Week;
  • Child Nutrition Employee Appreciation Week;
  • National Physical Education and Sport Week; and
  • Teacher Appreciation Week.

CCPS highlights Administrative Professionals Week from April 18-22 and focuses on the supportive role administrative professionals have in the workplace, and the importance of their contributions in maintaining efficient and effective office operations. Administrative Professionals Week also highlights the wealth of knowledge, clerical duties, awareness of procedures and public relations skills professionals demonstrate daily. Accepting the resolution at the Board meeting were Laura Cuevas, secretary for supporting services, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, and LaTasha Hall, human resources assistant, Starkey Building. Board member Barbara Palko presented the resolution on behalf of the Board.

CCPS recognizes Child Nutrition Employee Appreciation Week May 2-6. This week celebrates the contributions of food service workers and food service staff, and their supportive role to the school system, students and staff. In the past school year, food service staff have served more than 2.4 million lunches and 1.5 million breakfasts to students. Accepting the resolution at the Board meeting was William Kreuter, supervisor of food service for CCPS. Board member Victoria Kelly presented the resolution on behalf of the Board.

National Physical Education and Sport Week is highlighted by CCPS annually. This year, CCPS recognizes the week of May 1-7 to highlight the importance of physical education and sports in the development of growing children. National Physical Education and Sport Week also highlights the positive impact physical education has on students, such as improving overall health, increasing mental alertness and contributing to a positive self-image. Accepting the resolution at the Board meeting were Joneiqua Gary, physical education and health teacher at Mattawoman Middle School, and Mary Dempsey, physical education and health teacher at St. Charles High School. Board member Mark Crawford presented the resolution to the teachers on behalf of the Board.

CCPS highlights Teacher Appreciation Week annually and recognizes National Teacher Appreciation Day this year on May 3. Teacher Appreciation Week is May 1-7 and highlights the contributions of teachers in the lives of children, as well as their positive impact within school communities. Teacher Appreciation Week also focuses on essential skills teachers have to support the smooth operation of a classroom, such as encouraging family learning and parental involvement, serving as a positive role model for children and demonstrating a commitment to student success. Accepting the resolution at the Board meeting were Suzette Hahn, a fifth-grade teacher at Dr. James Craik Elementary School, Andrea Short, English teacher at Westlake High School, and Gina Coughlin, a special education teacher at the F.B. Gwynn Educational Center. Board Chairman Virginia McGraw presented the resolution on behalf of the Board.

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,300 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Pamela K. Murphy, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.