Month: December 2017


Starting in January, parents can add money to their child’s meal account online through My Payments Plus with no service charges. My Payments Plus currently charges users a 3.75 percent service fee per transaction. Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) recently negotiated an agreement with My Payments Plus to eliminate service fees for system users. According to William Kreuter, supervisor of food and nutrition services for CCPS, the goal of the agreement is to encourage parent use of the system. My Payments Plus is an online cafeteria prepayment system parents can use to pay for their child’s meal accounts. My Payments Read more…


The holiday gifting season began a little earlier this past Wednesday for 30 C. Paul Barnhart Elementary School students. They were surprised with brand new bicycles, equipped with safety helmets and stockings full of goodies. The bicycles were courtesy of the Omicron Delta Sigma Chapter of the Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., whose members surprised the students at school with the bikes on Dec. 20. To be considered for one of the bicycles, students had to enter an essay contest run by Barnhart staff. The contest was open for students in prekindergarten through fifth grades. Barnhart’s younger students in grades Read more…


Tis the season for student shopping at General Smallwood Middle School. The school hosted its annual holiday shop this week for students of all grade levels. Part of the library was transformed in to a store for students to shop for holiday presents. One thing not exchanged in the shop was money; students shopped with their Bulldog Bucks. Students receive the bucks as part of the schoolwide Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support (PBIS) program. The shop was open for four days this week – three days for students to visit during their assigned class and a make-up day for students Read more…


Pairing members of Michelle Bradshaw’s Life Skills class with general education students, the Ram Friends Club at Maurice J. McDonough High School enjoyed a recent meeting making crafts for the holiday season. The International Club at Maurice J. McDonough High School held a meet and greet during the school’s one-hour lunch. Over three days, members of the club — who themselves or their families come from different places around the globe — talk to students interested in finding out more about different cultures. During the meet and greets, guests could sample food, and listen and dance to music. John Hanson Read more…


All Charles County public schools will be closed for winter break from Monday, Dec. 25 through Monday, Jan. 1. Schools reopen for students and teachers on Tuesday, Jan. 2. Administrative offices are closed Dec. 25, Dec. 26 and Jan. 1. The Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. during winter break. The following is the indoor pool schedule for Henry E. Lackey and North Point high schools, and the Donald M. Wade Aquatic Center at St. Charles High School. Closed Dec. 24-25; Pools open 1 to 8 p.m., Dec. 26-Dec. 29; Pools open Read more…


Gale-Bailey Elementary School Mathematics, Engineering and Science Achievement (MESA) students went on a special field trip last month to learn about science, technology, engineering and math, known as STEM. Nearly 25 students, all of whom are on one of three Gale-Bailey MESA teams, visited Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory Nov. 29. Students participated in hands-on activities such as making slime, learning about sound and working on computer skills through coding. Midshipmen from the U.S. Naval Academy helped the students through the activities. The MESA teams at Gale-Bailey are preparing for the wood bridge, Scratch computer game design and Storybook Read more…


Students at William A. Diggs Elementary School from prekindergarten to fifth grade are cracking the code of computer science during Hour of Code. The Code.org initiative aims to spark interest among students to further study computer science and coding while expanding access and participation among females and underrepresented minorities to the field. However, the road may not be a smooth one. “Failing is not a bad thing,” said Jason James, a systems engineer volunteering in technology facilitator Alesia McWillis’s class at Diggs. Failing leads to new avenues of thinking, going back to the drawing board and coming up with solutions Read more…


Berry Elementary School orchestra director Susan Sweeney hosts monthly parent nights in which students work with their parents to master skills they are working on in class. Sweeney also serves as the orchestra director at Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer and William B. Wade elementary schools. In addition to Berry, Sweeney hosts parent nights at both Jenifer and Wade. The goal of the monthly meetings is to connect school and home and encourage students and parents to work together so music skills are practiced at home. Parents report they are better equipped to support and assist their children as they Read more…


The Board of Education honored five exemplary Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) employees at its Dec. 12 meeting for their dedication and commitment to teaching and learning, and for making a difference in the lives of students. Honored were Samantha Clark, special education teacher, Mary H. Matula Elementary School; Karen Ferruzza, library media specialist, Arthur Middleton Elementary School; Ann Herbert, prekindergarten teacher, Gale-Bailey Elementary School; Annemarie Simpson, mathematics teacher, Maurice J. McDonough High School; and Peter Wilt, social studies teacher, Milton M. Somers Middle School. Clark is an inclusion teacher at Matula and demonstrates passion for her students on a Read more…


The Board of Education at its Dec. 12 meeting honored five Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) students for their accomplishments in academic achievement, personal responsibility and career readiness. They are Charlie Shin, senior, Maurice J. McDonough High School; Diallo Barnes, eighth-grade student, Milton M. Somers Middle School; Lucy Flynn, fifth-grade student, Gale-Bailey Elementary School; Clinton Cupples, fifth-grade student, Mary H. Matula Elementary School; and Joya Thompson, fifth-grade student, Arthur Middleton Elementary School. Shin was honored by the Board for his accomplishments in the area of academic achievement. He is an honor roll student and enrolled in the Scholars Course of Read more…

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