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The Board of Education of Charles County met Dec. 10, 2019, for its regular monthly meeting.

A time of employee giving

Superintendent Kimberly Hill highlighted ways Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) students staff and community regularly give their time and resources with no expectation for anything in return. She talked about CCPS giving that starts when school opens for the year and extends year-round. Hill also updated the Board on changes to the 2019 Maryland Report Card and the switch in the state assessment from Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) to the Maryland Comprehensive Assessment Program (MCAP). She said the Fresh Start Academy Advisory Board met for the first time last month and outlined how the CCPS early childhood office collaborates with the Charles County Early Childhood Advisory Council (ECAC). Superintendent's Report icon acrobat

Disproportionality in special education

Deputy Superintendent Amy Hollstein and Director of Special Education Arden Sotomayor reviewed CCPS 2017-18 special education data. CCPS had 3,199 special education students who composed 11.8 percent of the student population for that year. Last year, the Maryland State Department of Education notified CCPS that it had significant disproportionality in the area of out-of-school suspensions for less than or equal to 10 days for black or African-American special education students. As a result, the school system conducted a root cause analysis to determine the underlying factors contributing to significant disproportionality; reviewed and revised processes as needed; and developed coordinated early intervention services to address identified root causes. Additionally, CCPS continues to monitor disciplinary removals to ensure progress. CCPS has not received its 2018-19 school year results. Significant Disproportionality in Special Education Report icon acrobat

County receives partial funding for construction projects

CCPS submits construction project requests to the Maryland Interagency Commission (IAC) on School Construction annually. This year’s request is $32.9 million and the IAC recently notified CCPS supporting services staff that its initial recommendation is $7.5 million, which represents about 75 percent of what the school system can expect in fiscal year 2021. The total, said Steven Andritz, director of planning and construction, will be about 9.7 million, a significant drop from last year’s $13 million state contribution. Assistant Superintendent of Supporting Services Michael Heim highlighted ongoing projects including the demolition of Eva Turner Elementary School and the progress of site work at Benjamin Stoddert Middle School that clears the way to begin construction. Project Status Update icon acrobat

Water testing and remediation complete

Assistant Superintendent Michael Heim gave an update on water testing. CCPS tested drinking water outlets at all schools and centers during the spring of 2019. Staff has replaced or repaired 123 outlets where water samples exceeded the state maximum contaminant level of 20 parts per billion (ppb). Repaired or replaced outlets will remain covered until a new test indicates a lead level below 20 ppb. CCPS plans to test all schools and buildings once every three years on a rotating cycle that starts this year. Click here to view the school and center water quality reports.

Health insurance overview

Representatives from CareFirst and CVS Health gave a broad overview of employee health insurance and prescription benefits. Representatives provided an enrollment summary, financial performance, high-cost claimant impact, network discounts and how CareFirst promotes wellness for employees. The prescription snapshot included the total costs of prescription medicines, the impact of high-cost specialty drugs and trend drivers. Health Insurance Presentation icon acrobat

State creates substitute reporting regulation

The Maryland State Board of Education has adopted a regulation that would establish a disqualification criterion for substitute teachers. Staff Attorney Eric Schwartz said local school systems must inform the state if a substitute has, among other criteria, been identified for possible involvement in child abuse or neglect, failure to report suspected child abuse or is found guilty of certain crimes. The regulation requires local school systems to check a state database for disqualification when hiring substitutes as well as reporting substitutes who meet the criteria. The school system already has a similar reporting requirement for certificated teachers. The regulation does not limit the school system’s ability to terminate a substitute for any reason. The intent of the regulation is to prevent individuals from moving to other school systems.

Recognition

The Board recognized five students for excellence in the areas of personal responsibility, academic achievement and career readiness.

  • Quinten Echard, senior, career readiness, Westlake High School
  • Suki Aumavae, Grade 8, academic achievement, Theodore G. Davis Middle School
  • Emmaline Ogungbesan; Grade 5, academic achievement, Billingsley Elementary School
  • Genesis Rodriquez Batalla, Grade 5, academic achievement, Indian Head Elementary School
  • Genesis Zelaya Villalobos, Grade 5, academic achievement, Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy Elementary School

Click here to read about the Student Recognitions.

The Board recognized five exemplary employees.

  • Scott Shuttleworth, instrumental music teacher, Westlake 
  • Linda Breitinger, instructional resource teacher, Davis
  • Charles Ford, building service manager, Billingsley
  • Cynthia Asimenios, special education instructional assistant, Indian Head
  • Catherine Graff, prekindergarten teacher, Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy

Click here to read about the Employee Recognitions.

Public Forum

Nine people spoke at public forum. Speakers addressed inconsistencies in implementing discipline procedures, classroom visitation rules, teaching social skills and lack of administrator follow through on incidents. Click here to watch the public forum.

Action items

The Board approved the minutes of the Nov. 25 legislative breakfast meeting, the Nov. 12 Board meeting and executive session minutes from Nov. 12, Nov. 26 and Dec. 2. Additionally, the Board approved the Superintendent’s recommendation for certificated staff including two certificated appointments, two releases without prejudice, two releases with prejudice, one retirement and two leaves of absence.

Watch the Board meeting

Want to learn more about the Dec. 10 Board meeting? Click here to watch the complete meeting.


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