March 2013: Vol. 4, No. 8

Moving FCPS Forward
Reorganizing Central Office
 Moving FCPS Forward
FCPS has begun the process of reorganizing Fiscal, Human Resources and Technology Services to better position our school system to serve the needs of all our customers –students, families and community. Since announcing the reorganization earlier this month, FCPS leaders have been working to share as much information and as many details with employees as quickly as possible.
From FCPS-networked computers, employees can access a Web page dedicated to the reorganization. There you’ll find organizational charts, overview documents and other materials. You’ll also find a series of interviews with Superintendent Dr. Terry Alban and other FCPS leaders, in which they talk about the rationale behind the reorganization and some of the specific details about how we’ll work to implement the budget-neutral changes. We will regularly update the page as new information and resources are available.
From the video links below, see interviews between Communication Services director Michael Doerrer and Superintendent Dr. Terry Alban, chief operating officer Ann Bonitatibus, Fiscal Services executive director Leslie Pellegrino, Human Resources executive director Paula Lawton and deputy superintendent Steve Lockard
Employee Excellence
Public Education Suceeds, Thanks to You!
Jo BranhamNew Market MS math teacher Jo Branham is in her 3rd year of teaching. Language arts teacher Hayley Howe nominated Jo for the First-Class Employee award "because she is an excellent example for her peers and role model for her students." 
Hayley admires the ways that Jo quickly established herself as a 'seasoned' veteran by learning from her mistakes and making changes in the best interests of her students. Jo eagerly seeks help from colleagues when struggling, then can turn around and be a shoulder to lean on. She does not accept mediocrity, and students know she is there for support. She hosts afterschool review sessions, heads the STEM department and coaches MathCounts.
"Ms. Branham connects with our community," says Principal Jennifer Bingman. "Her lessons are engaging. She organized Career Day and has been instrumental in planning an exciting STEM night. Ms. Branham is a model of first-class teaching, making a positive difference at our school every day."
First Class Blue Ribbon
Congratulations to other staff earning First-Class Employee awards since our last newsletter: Casey Armstrong, Mike Baker, Monty Bussard, Larry Daulbaugh, Lawrence Davis, Malcolm Genus, Larry Gibbons, Shaun Gratton, Travis Gue, Lindsay Hall, George Harne, Toby Heusser, Katie May, Jody Miller, Stacey Sisler, Eric Smith and Annette Stover.
FCPS is accepting nominations for the 2013 Support Employee of the Year Awards until 3 PM, Monday, April 15.
Help Stop the Flu
FLU FIGHTER AWARD FCPS is among a group of local employers that LifeWork Strategies is recognizing for help in preventing influenza. Thank you to all who took advantage of the opportunity to get a flu vaccine and to Human Resources staff Colette Baker and Tiana Haile for coordinating prevention activities.
STATE WINNERS Seven students in Phil Arnold's Career and Technology Center’s Engineering Computer-Aided Design (CAD) program recently won state-level competition and qualify to advance to the national Real World Design Challenge (RWDC). This is the second year the FCPS team has won at the state level and moves on to the national competition. See the photo!
CC Presentation 2013PILLARS OF CHARACTER Kudos to FCPS staff and Ballenger Creek ES students invited to the Character Counts! Board of Governors meeting in Washington, DC last month to present highlights of our outstanding character-education initiatives: Kristen Daly, Shari Ostrow Scher, Paul Puglisi, Patty Quagliette, Liz Sherman and Janet Shipman.
The attentive audience included founder Michael Josephson, who expressed interest in having an FCPS school serve as a Regional Instructional Center to host Character Development Seminars.
CHAMPIONS Middletown HS won this year's Academic Tournament.  Kudos to the team's advisors John Kirkendall and David Thomas and to Perry Baker, who received the Curriculum Specialists Award. More about the tournament
News to Use
BOE Budget RequestFUNDING FCPS The Board of Education submitted its FCPS FY14 Operating Budget Request to the Board of County Commissioners March 1. The request has $15.2 million more in expenditures than the $0.2 million increase Maryland law requires the county to provide in Maintenance of Effort funding based on 40 new students for the coming school year. Engagement opportunities  continue in Rally Around the Promise, Phase 2 activities with 3 of 5 community workshops  on Monday, March 25. See details in the newest budget handout and budget booklet. To advocate for funding needed to help schools retain and attract quality staff, meet technology needs and add security measures, mark your calendar to attend the Commissioners' public hearing Tuesday, May 7, 6 PM at Urbana HS
Wellness AppleCOULD YOU USE $25?  Up to 1,000 FCPS benefited employees will receive an extra $25 in a May paycheck!  To enter your name in a drawing to be among them, visit to read Benefits 101 and complete the brief questionnaire by Friday, April 19.  P.S. Watch our next issue for another employee benefit to help you take the $50 online Financial Fitness Challenge, free.
MSDE SUMMER COURSES Registration begins Monday, April 8, 8:30 AM. Space is limited, and the fee increases after May 15. If you have questions after reading the online instructions, please call 240-236-8831 or 8835. 

4-DAY WORKWEEKS FCPS will close on Fridays this summer, beginning Monday, June 17. Employees who would normally work 5-day weeks in summer will work longer hours Mondays-Thursdays to make up Friday hours. An exception is the week of Independence Day, when all employees will have a holiday on Thursday, July 4 and work regular, non-extended days Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. FCPS will return to the regular 5-day schedule Monday, August 5.  FAQs    Sample Schedules

BBQ  FCPS has signed a partnership with Famous Dave's to encourage students to read. See details and photo!


REPORT CARDS FCPS is updating our elementary report card format. Find out more.


NEW FACE IN A KEY PLACE  When Middletown HS athletic director Tim Ambrose retires this summer, Michael DeSimone will assume his duties. Find out more.


ALGEBRA See how FCPS secondary math curriculum specialist Peter Cincotta answers questions about Algebra I and the Common Core.


FCPS TV FCPS TV  Check out the newest programs, not listed elsewhere in this issue, available on demand*

*The BACK arrow will return you to this page.

FCPS Factoid
Q:  How many students have artwork featured throughout March at the FCPS Youth Art Show?
A:  390:  177 elementary. 69 middle and 144 high
If you hurry you can still see the vibrant student art exhibit at the Delaplaine Visual Arts Education Center in downtown Frederick. 
Before March ends, lift your spirits with colorful and creative student art projects! Take a friend....admission is free. News Release     Video