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Superintendent’s report

Superintendent Kimberly Hill updated the Board on safety and security enhancements occurring over the summer including the launch of volunteer guidelines and background checks, the School Safety Town Hall on Aug. 29 and substitute, new hires and leadership training. Superintendent's Reporticon acrobat

Defining dyslexia

Special education and instructional staff reported on how the school system serves children with dyslexia. Dyslexia is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. The educators shared recommendations from the Maryland Task Force on dyslexia which resulted in proposed best practices in screening, identification and instruction for students at risk or identified as students with dyslexia. Dyslexia Task Force Recommendations.icon acrobat

Construction ahead

Supporting services staff presented a construction project status including full-day kindergarten additions at Dr. James Craik and Berry elementary schools, which open at the start of the 2018-19 school year. Additionally, the Dr. Samuel A. Mudd Elementary School renovation and addition is 57 percent complete and Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) 22nd elementary school, Billingsley, is 81 percent complete. Dr. Mudd and Billingsley are slated to open in September 2019. Other construction projects include plans for modernization and additions at Eva Turner Elementary School and Benjamin Stoddert Middle School, a partial open space enclosure at Arthur Middleton Elementary School, parking improvements at Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer Elementary School and the connection of public water to Matthew Henson Middle School. Construction Updatesicon acrobat

Stoddert/Turner renovations

Eva Turner and Stoddert are next on the list for renovation and expansion. Architects for each project provided planning concepts to modernize the educational spaces and increase the state-rated capacity/student enrollment at both schools. Turner’s capacity will grow from 351 to 513 students and Stoddert’s will increase from 711 to 935 students plus room for a specialized special education program. Turner students are expected to attend school at the CCPS transition school during renovation, while Stoddert students will remain in their school during construction. The Turner project is estimated to cost $20.4 million and Stoddert’s renovation cost is estimated at $43.4 million. Pending state approval and funding, construction at both schools could begin as early as the summer/fall of 2019. Benjamin Stoddert Architect Plans icon acrobat   Eva Turner Architect Plans icon acrobat   State and Local Capital Improvement Requests.icon acrobat

Training, facility improvements, incident reporting

Staff from multiple departments updated the Board on safety and security enhancements including additional training, partnerships with first responders, online incident reporting, mental health programs, information sharing and facility improvements. School Safety and Security Presentation.icon acrobat

Recognition through resolutions

The Board takes time at most meetings to recognize groups or special events through a formal resolution. The Board reviewed its recurring resolutions, including American Education Week; American Freedom Week; Black History Month; Gifted and Talented Education Month; Career and Technology Education Month; National School Counseling Week; Read Across America; Women's History Month; Fine and Performing Arts Month; Month of the Young Child; National Student Leadership Week; Teacher Appreciation Week; Administrative Professionals' Week; Child Nutrition Employee Appreciation Week; National Physical Education and Sport Week; Washington Post Principal of the Year Awards Program; Washington Post Teacher of the Year Awards Program; MSDE Teacher of the Year: Charles County nominee; Employees' Retirement; and Be the Difference Outstanding CCPS Volunteers.

Public Forum

Three people spoke during public forum, including Tracy Wolff and Maureen Mears from Decoding Dyslexia. Both speakers thanked staff for its willingness to work with their group and to expand training for teachers. The third speaker, Danny Mears, explained his challenges as a student with dyslexia and how he focuses on his strengths at school. He encouraged the Board to provide more assistive technology for dyslexic students. Danny’s testimony is captured on the Board meeting video at the 2 hour, 59-minute mark. Click here to watch the Board Meeting video.

Board votes

The Board of Education unanimously approved the Superintendent’s certificated personnel recommendations covering: 168 appointments; 87 releases without prejudice; 11 releases with prejudice; seven retirements and two leaves of absence.

The Board unanimously approved an intercategory budget change of $400,000 from savings in Student Personnel and Student Health Services to cover an overage in transportation. CCPS now forwards the request to the Charles County Commissioners for consideration and approval, which is required by law. Intercategory Budget Transfer Request.icon acrobat