December 2012: Vol. 4, No. 5

Rally Around the Promise
Engaging Our Community
 
As FCPS prepares to weigh budgetary priorities for the 2013-2014 school year (FY14), we are working to bring all of Frederick Countyincluding stafftogether around the understanding that public education is the cornerstone of our community; we all have a stake in our schools.
 
“Frederick County is as strong as the citizens we prepare and empower to excel,” says Superintendent Dr. Terry Alban. “I encourage every employee and every person who lives or does business in Frederick County and every family and community member who cares about public education to save the date to join in a countywide Rally Around the Promise on Thursday, January 17, 7 PM, at Tuscarora High School.”
 
Dr. Alban's emphasis is on starting the public budget conversation earlier than usual. She has attended several school-based and other community events to share brief remarks and hear feedback. In addition, she invites dialog via Facebook, e-mail and Twitter.
 
Please see the information FCPS has posted at www.fcps.org/thepromise, including a video and link to the new FCPS Maryland Facebook page. The school system has also dedicated an e-mail address for everyone wishing to provide feedback: ThePromise@fcps.org. To join in the conversation via Twitter, follow FCPS at https://twitter.com/FCPSMaryland and use the hashtag #FCPSpromise.
 
At the January 17 Rally Around the Promise, Dr. Alban will present her first budget draft, having also listened to community priorities at Community Night Town Hall meetings at 7 PM on Thursday, January 3 at Crestwood Middle School and Monday, January 7 at Walkersville High
 
In Frederick County nearly one in four students lives in poverty. One in 10 faces a serious learning challenge, with 11 percent qualifying for special education services.
 
“Regardless of their backgrounds, regardless of their circumstances, FCPS students have achieved a lot. That’s the promise of public education,” she says. “It takes caring about our students as individuals—knowing their struggles and their strengths.
 
“The students we graduate,” she emphasizes, “are the people most likely to provide the care and services that Frederick County residents need to maintain their health, homes, businesses, neighborhoods and more. It’s time for all of us to express our pride in Frederick County Public Schools. It’s time for us to talk openly about moving away from the idea of ‘good enough’ and instead empower our students to achieve excellence, in our schools and in our community. Schools must deliver the quality our community needs. Please join me January 17 in standing up for Frederick County and public education.”
 
The Rally snow date is January 24.
 
Employee Excellence
Public Education Succeeds, Thanks to You!
 
KlineSaxonWarehouse Foreman David Stine (left, in photo) and Warehouse Specialist Robert "Bobby" Saxon (right, in photo) each received First-Class Employee awards this month.  
 
When David "says a delivery will be handled, I can rest assured that it will be. I have the utmost confidence that tasks will be done on time and completely," a co-worker wrote. "Relatively new to FCPS, David has handled important responsibility with commendable efficiency."
 
Bobby has received four First-Class Employee awards! This year's nomination came from the coordinator for Advanced Academics, who wrote, "He is upbeat, positive and willing to lend a hand, and had a smile and wave for each and every one of us. Sometimes it is the little things that make the biggest difference. Bobby Saxon noticed the little ways he could lend us a hand and did them without hesitation. We appreciate his dedication and kindness."  
 
Congratulations to other staff earning First-Class Employee awards since our last newsletter: Jennifer Abrecht, Holly Brashears, Catherine Brooks, Betty Eastlake, Lynn Evans, Alicia Finley, Marcia Forsythe, Keri Grossnickle, Anne Howe, Laura Jones, Kathleen McBay, Linda McLane, Kelly Merrbach, Kelly Montgomery, Tina Murray, Curtis Orndorff, Kelly Tasch and Laurie Ward.
 
Nominations are open for two prestigious awards:  The Washington Post Agnes Meyer Outstanding Teacher Award ($3,000) and Distinguished Educational Leadership Award recognize teachers and principals who go beyond the day-to-day demands of their position to create an exceptional educational environment. Nomination packets are due to Communication Services by 3 PM, Friday, January 11, with no exceptions. Please see eligibility and nomination criteria:  www.fcps.org/awards.  
***Accolades***
 
WORLD'S BEST FCPS student Kundan Chintamaneni is among only 17 worldwide to achieve a perfect score on the Advanced Placement (AP) Calculus BC exam...and he did so when he was a freshman at Middletown HS! Kudos to his AP Calculus teacher: Matt Schmidt. Accolades also to Kundan's former teachers at Middletown ES, North Frederick ES and Middletown MS.
  

The Gift

ART Walkersville ES visual arts teacher and specials team leader Angie Biggus has a large painting on display at the Delaplaine Visual Art Center in the City of Frederick Holiday Show, now through Friday, December 28.

Kudos also to Walkersville HS art teacher Susan Maseth, who received a plaque for the school when her students earned prizes in the Maryland Department of the Environment's Rethink Recycling Sculpture Contest.

FCPS LEADS STATE The first release of School Progress Index data shows FCPS on top. See how our neighboring districts compare.

ADVOCACY On behalf of Frederick HS, biology teacher Mark Trice was awarded a $10,000+ grant from the Toshiba America Foundation. Funds will help AP Biology students explore concepts of genomics.

CARING FCPS employees have pledged $78,703 to the Combined Charities Campaign. Although the campaign is officially over, contributions are still accepted until January 8. For details: Peggy.Ballew@fcps.org

 

FCAEOP 50th

GOLDEN The Frederick County Association of Education Office Professionals (FCAEOP) met November 12 at the Career and Technology Center Spires Café to celebrate the group's 50th anniversary. The first meeting was November 12, 1962. The following employees were installed as officers for 2012-2014 and are shown in the photo, left to right:  Treasurer Faye Fogle, Corresponding Secretary Debbie Schroyer, Vice President Kay Schroyer, President Paula Oden and Recording Secretary Debbie Wachter-Harne.  Past presidents in attendance were: Patsy Eavey, Marty Fisher, Nancy Fogle, Barbara Mims, Paula Oden and Georgia Ann Zirkle. In addition to office professionals mentioned above, Susan Barber was recognized for her contributions. The following administrators attended and received accolades: Dave Markoe, Russell Beaton, Earl Miller, Tom Shade, Carroll Kehne Jr., Dr. John George, Michael Bunitsky, Bill Boyer, Nelson Palmer and Larkin Hohnke.  

News to Use
 
SCHOOL SAFETY  FCPS was quick to react with safety messages to our community the day of the tragic school shootings in Newtown, CT. Superintendent Alban gave an important interview that evening on Fox 5. Principals and other school leaders also responded. It is crucial that we work together to keep school safety our highest priority, protecting students and staff at all times. Please feel free to share the Safe Schools Tip Hotline, found with other safety information on page 58 of your Calendar Handbook: 1-877-636-6332.
 
WELCOME Newly elected BOE members Dr. Zakir Bengali, Joy Schaefer and re-elected incumbent Kathryn B. Groth took the oath of office December 12.  All were elected to four-year terms. After the swearing-in ceremony, the Board convened its annual meeting to elect officers for the coming year. Jean A. Smith was elected president and Joy Schaefer vice president.  Other Board members, in addition to those named above, are Dr. April F. Miller, James C. Reeder Jr., and Brad W. Young. Brandon Wharton serves as student member.
 
KNOW AN INVOLVED PARENT?  The Maryland State Department of Education is accepting nominations for the Parent Involvement Matters Awards, honoring parents and guardians whose exemplary contributions to public education have led to improvements for Maryland’s public school children, teachers, schools, programs and/or policies. Nomination packages must be postmarked by January 31. 
 
RESTRICTED In the 2013-14 school year, FCPS will restrict out-of-district transfers at 14 schools projected to be at or over 100% capacity when school opens in August 2013: They are Brunswick ES, Centerville ES, Deer Crossing ES, Hillcrest ES, Monocacy ES, New Market ES, North Frederick ES, Oakdale MS, Tuscarora ES, Urbana ES, Urbana MS, Waverley ES, Whittier ES and Yellow Springs ES. More
 
STUDENT LEADER  Nominations are open for sophomores and juniors to become the 2013-14 student BOE member. The deadline is January 4 for the one-year term beginning in July 2013. Student government advisors have details, also online: http://sites.fcps.org/fcasc/node/24#attachments. Principals and student government advisors may also nominate a student. More
 
FCPS TV Check out the newest programs not already mentioned above, available on-demand*
 
For Our Community:
Excellence Is Everywhere  Dakota Spiegel sends thanks.  
 
 
*The BACK arrow will return you to this page.
 
 
FCPS Factoid
 
Home Page
 
 
Q:  Which is the real FCPS Facebook page?
 
A:  Don't be fooled by the fake page.
 

It's easy to find the real FCPSMaryland page:  

 
Just use the Facebook icon on the lower left online at www.fcps.org
 
 
P.S. Although school sites cannot access Facebook, employees may "like" the site from home or a mobile device and tell parents about it.  At last count the page had over 1,100 "likes."