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Superintendent’s update
Superintendent Kimberly A. Hill spoke about student behavior and discipline and what the school system is doing to resolve student behavior concerns. She also talked about the Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) Leadership Institute, featuring Manny Scott, Freedom Writer and author of “Even on Your Worst Day, You Can Be a Student’s Best Hope,” followed by Russell McClain, associate dean for diversity and inclusion at the University of Maryland. Mr. McClain’s remarks focused on implicit bias and stereotype threats. Michele Gay, a Sandy Hook Elementary School parent who lost a daughter during the horrific tragedy in 2012, closed the three-day program with a presentation about safe schools. The institute is the opening professional development activity for principals and school administrators before the start of school. Superintendent's Report icon acrobat

Certificated staff signs contract
Linda McLaughlin, president of the Education Association of Charles County (EACC), and negotiating teams for the EACC and CCPS signed the certificated employee contract for the 2019-20 school year. The contract was ratified by the EACC membership and took effect July 1. EACC Report icon acrobat

New and renovated schools open Sept. 3
The Office of Supporting Services presented project overviews for the Dr. Samuel A. Mudd Elementary School renovation and addition, Billingsley Elementary School and the pending renovations at Eva Turner Elementary School and Benjamin Stoddert Middle School. Construction at Mudd and Billingsley is complete and principals at both schools are preparing to welcome their students Sept. 3. The renovation of Turner has started and students will attend classes at the Transition School for the next two years as their school is modernized and modified to meet today’s educational program requirements and building standards and codes. CCPS has scheduled construction at Stoddert to begin in October. The school will be modernized and expanded to add space for more students.

Summer is construction time
Construction continued at Arthur Middleton Elementary School for the second consecutive summer, closing in open classrooms with walls and updating mechanical systems. Construction continues at the Robert D. Stethem Educational Center to modernize and expand the middle school opt-in program space as well as to renovate classrooms for the Fresh Start Academy.

Students at Berry, C. Paul Barnhart and Malcolm elementary schools as well as General Smallwood Middle School will see big changes as they enter their schools on opening day. CCPS staff has completed guided entry vestibules at these schools that direct visitors to check in at the office, not allowing open access to the school. Supporting Services Construction Projects icon acrobat

Piccowaxen goes solar
Piccowaxen Middle School is home to the first CCPS solar field. Tesla Energy, along with CCPS, installed the fields at no cost to the school system as along as CCPS purchases power from the field for 20 years. Supporting Services Construction Projects icon acrobat

School seat allocations
Assistant Superintendent of Supporting Services Michael Heim presented information about school seat allocations. He said the county is considering ways to change current rules. Board Chair Virginia McGraw suggested the creation of a school system work group to determine what impact changes could have on the school system.  Board member Jennifer Abell also requested McGraw to ask Charles County Commissioner President Reuben Collins to consider reinstating the Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance (APFO) committee, which provided seats for everyone at the table. The consensus of the Board was to support the request and that Abell should represent them on the committee as she is most familiar with the process.  School Seat Allocations- Summary of Adequate Public Facilities Manual icon acrobat

Capital Improvement Program
The Board reviewed the State and Local Capital Improvements Program (CIP). The annual document outlines facility improvements at schools including complete renovations and expansions, kindergarten additions and renovations, open space enclosures, a new elementary school, roof replacements and more. The 38 projects would require about $30 million in state funding. The proposed projects are planned through fiscal year 2026. FY2021 State and Local Capital Improvements Program icon acrobat

Board self-reports Open Meetings violation
Chairman McGraw read a statement to inform the public of an Open Meetings Act violation. She said the Board met June 3 to discuss the Superintendent’s evaluation, which is an administrative function of the Board and not subject to the Open Meetings Act. However, the meeting transpired into a discussion about the Superintendent’s contract, which qualifies as a closed session discussion, but must be advertised and procedurally closed. “It was not the intent of the Board to avoid the requirements of the Act, and the Board will continue to follow the law moving forward. Subsequent to the June 3 meeting, four members of the Board met to continue discussion of the Superintendent’s evaluation. The four members in attendance were Ms. Wilson, Ms. Brown, Mr. Hancock and me,” McGraw said.

School system upgrading business software
CCPS plans to streamline its business processes with a new enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. CCPS is working with a consultant to research the best solution to replace its 32-year-old system. The new system will modernize procedures for payroll and human resources as well as automate a number of other business-related processes, which will save time and improve efficiency, Assistant Superintendent of Finance Randy Sotomayor said. ERP Presentation icon acrobat

Recurring resolutions
The Board reviewed its recurring resolutions which include 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.

Student member DeJuan Woods Jr. asked the Board to consider three new resolutions that would reflect student diversity. Woods proposed adding Hispanic Heritage Month, National Asian Pacific American Heritage Month and LGBTQ+ Pride Month. The Board will vote on resolutions at its September meeting.

Public Forum
Six people spoke during Public Forum. Most speakers were students concerned about changes in the way CCPS is offering financial literacy. Students recognized the value of the course and asked the Board to consider offering it on early dismissal days at the end of the school year. Students said having an alternative time outside the regular school day to complete the financial literacy course gives them more flexibility in their schedules. 

Silvie Acevedo spoke about early intervention and stressed how essential it is for parents to decide if their child needs services to succeed in school. Early intervention is key, she said. She cited the success of her son who started as a non-verbal toddler in the infant and toddler program at the F.B. Gwynn Educational Center and progressed so well through the years that he became an honor student, JROTC member and CCPS news anchor.

Action items
The Board unanimously approved personnel actions covering 128 certificated appointments, 78 releases without prejudice, eight releases with prejudice, eight retirements, two leave of absence and four administrative appointments. The Board voted four to three to amend the Superintendent’s contract. The Board also unanimously approved its core values. Click here to view the core values

Click here to watch the Board Meeting.

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