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Board of Education November 2023 Meeting Updates

The Board of Education of Charles County met Nov. 14, 2023, for its regular meeting. A meeting agenda is posted on Board Docs here. Board meetings are streamed live on the school system website at and archived on the Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) YouTube page.

The following are important meeting updates.

Samichie Thomas sworn in as new District 1 Board member

At the start of the Board’s meeting, Samichie K. Thomas of Hughesville was sworn in as a new Board member representing District 1. The ceremony was officiated by Charles County Clerk of the Circuit Court Lisa E. Yates. After conducting an application and interview process for candidates, the Board chose Thomas to fill its District 1 vacancy. Read more about Thomas here.

Superintendent update

In her report to the Board, Superintendent of Schools Maria V. Navarro, Ed.D., recognized April Murphy, CCPS supervisor of operations, and Jack Tuttle, CCPS content specialist for social studies, for their help in coordinating the Day of Thanksgiving and Service event set for Thanksgiving Day at St. Charles High School. Navarro reminded audience members to submit feedback on the CCPS State of the Schools presentation, and also highlighted American Education Week, National Apprenticeship Week and staff members who recently earned the Global Seal of Biliteracy. To read Navarro’s full report, click here.

FY2024 budget increase request

Karen Acton, CCPS chief financial officer, shared a fiscal year 2024 Superintendent budget request increase of $22.4 million. Acton told the Board the request is a result of the school system’s implementation of the new Oracle Cloud enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. Oracle handles open purchase orders at year’s end differently than the current financial system used by CCPS.  With Oracle, purchase orders that are not fully liquidated at year’s end are closed and the money is returned to the fund balance. The purchase orders are then opened in the new fiscal year (for this request - 2024), which reduces the fund balance.

The request will bring the budget with the purchase orders to the new fiscal year, with a net effect of zero (0) to the fund balance. The fund balance for fiscal year 2023 is increased, while the fund balance for fiscal year 2024 is reduced by the same amount. Acton also shared with the Board a request for an intercategory budget change request. The Board acted on both requests during the Action Item portion of the agenda. Staff will forward them to the Charles County Commissioners for consideration and approval. Review the 2024 budget change request here. The intercategory budget change request is posted on Board Docs.  

Vans for transportation

Michael Heim, CCPS chief of operations and supporting services, and Jason Tonkins, CCPS director of transportation, gave a presentation on the school system’s Alternative School Vehicle Procedures. CCPS has procedures in place in which authorized drivers can transport students in vehicles that meet state law standards such as vans for educational-related purposes. During their presentation, Heim and Tonkins shared with the Board laws and regulations guiding CCPS’ use of such vehicles and driver requirements. To view the presentation, click here.

School naming, committee update

Shelley Mackey, CCPS director of communications, provided the Board with an update on the School Naming Committee for Elementary School No. 23, and reviewed school name requirements outlined in Board Policy 7230. The committee will begin meeting next month to research and review school name recommendations for the next CCPS elementary school currently under construction off St. Charles Parkway in White Plains. CCPS will accept name recommendations for Elementary School No. 23 through Friday, Dec. 1. To learn more about the naming committee and Board Policy 7230 that outlines the process, click here.

New resolutions for Board consideration

Shelley Mackey, CCPS director of communications, shared a presentation about resolutions recently introduced to the Board for its consideration. Resolutions celebrate and highlight dates, months and other important recognitions to honor students and staff and recognize the culture and diversity of the school system and the Charles County community. At the Board’s September meeting, Board members introduced a list of resolutions for consideration by their colleagues. To view the list of proposed resolutions, click here.

National Special Education Day resolution

Board member Jamila Smith shared with the Board a draft resolution for National Special Education Day, set this year to fall on Saturday, Dec. 2. Smith shared that she worked with members of the Charles County Special Education Citizens Advisory Committee, also known as SECAC, to draft the resolution. The Board was set to act on the resolution at its Nov. 27 work session. Click here to view the resolution.

2024 Legislative positions

CCPS Staff Attorney Eric Schwartz updated the Board on 2024 legislative issues. His report included issues that were set to come before the Maryland General Assembly and the Board’s position related to school construction funding, curriculum issues, unfunded mandates, student assessments, special education, employee matters, transportation, school safety and school resource officers, and teacher recruitment and retention incentives. Read the full report here. Schwartz also presented to the Board an overview of compensation paid to Board of Education members across Maryland counties. To view the report, click here.


The Board recognized outstanding students and staff.


  • Cody Judware, senior, St. Charles High School.
  • Logan Boswell, Grade 8, Benjamin Stoddert Middle School.
  • Logan Smith, Grade 5, Dr. James Craik Elementary School.
  • Briana Henry, Grade 5, Malcolm Elementary School.
  • Emma Collado, Grade 5, J.C. Parks Elementary School.  


  • Amber Parry, special education teacher, Craik.
  • Ana Maria Brown, prekindergarten instructional assistant, Malcolm.
  • Tammy Dudley, kindergarten instructional assistant, Parks.
  • Charles McCoy, computer teacher, Stoddert.
  • Pauletta Brickey, financial secretary, St. Charles.

Action items

The Board acted on recent meeting minutes, legislative positions, an intercategory budget change request and the fiscal year 2024 budget change.

Work Session — Nov. 27, 2023

The Board of Education of Charles County met Monday, Nov. 27, 2023, for a work session. A meeting agenda is posted on BoardDocs under the meetings tab. Board meetings are streamed live at and archived on the CCPS YouTube page. The Nov. 27 work session is posted on YouTube here.

The following are important work session updates.

Policy 1820: Educational Equity

Sylvia Royster, CCPS director of community engagement and equity, and Christine Paul, CCPS community engagement and equity specialist, provided an update to the Board on a recent survey conducted for feedback on revisions proposed to Board Policy 1820: Educational Equity. During their presentation, Royster and Paul shared survey data and asked that the Board approve the revised policy to include reference terms for inclusion into the Superintendent Rule. The Board is set to take action on the policy revisions at its December meeting. Review the presentation here.  

Eligibility requirements for students 

Dr. Marvin Jones, CCPS chief of schools, and Richard Pauole, CCPS director of student activities, athletics and aquatics, provided to the Board an overview of the current eligibility policy in place for students in Grades 6-12 for athletics and extracurricular activities. Under the current policy, students must carry at least a 2.0 GPA from the previous quarter, have no failing (F) grades in the previous quarter, and have no more than 4.5 days of unexcused absences per quarter. During the presentation, Jones and Pauole presented the Board with recommended changes to the policy to include students would be eligible if they have no more than one F and have a 2.0 GPA or higher and eliminating the attendance requirement. Charles County is the only Maryland county to currently include an attendance requirement in its eligibility policy. The Board will hear additional information about the requested policy changes at its December meeting. To view the full presentation, click here

Blueprint funding requirement

Karen Acton, CCPS chief financial officer, and Christina Miller, CCPS Blueprint implementation coordinator, presented to the Board funding requirements outlined in the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future. According to Blueprint law, school systems must be able to show that each school was budgeted and used 75 percent of the total Blueprint funding, starting with the 2024-2025 school year. The Blueprint also features formulas that determine the amount of funds school systems receive for specific student groups, such as special education, prekindergarten and English language learners. Acton and Miller shared with the Board how the Blueprint will change the way CCPS develops its budget, starting with fiscal year 2025. To review the presentation, click here.

Action item

The Board approved a resolution recognizing Dec. 2 as National Special Education Day. Click here to view the resolution.

December Board meeting

The Board is set to meet on Tuesday, Dec. 12, starting at 1 p.m. A meeting agenda will be posted to the CCPS website at next week. All Board meetings are streamed live at

About CCPS

Charles County Public Schools provides 27,598 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 37 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 Kathy Kiessling, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Nikial M. Majors, 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.

CCPS provides nondiscriminatory equal access to school facilities in accordance with its Use of Facilities rules to designated youth groups (including, but not limited to, the Boy Scouts).