The Harford County Board of Education has planned a business meeting on April 30th that will include decisions on air-conditioning for William Paca and Youth’s Benefit elementary schools, and a review of the 2012 Maryland General Assembly session, including the passage of a bill that raises the age of compulsory school attendance. Other items on the jam-packed meeting agenda are a change to the HCPS school calendar for next year, and the introduction of a proposed calendar for the 2013 – 14 school year.
Superintendent Robert Tomback will recommend a contract award in the amount of $3,120,000 to Phillips Way, Inc. to air condition William Paca Elementary and to construct restroom ADA upgrades at Old Post Road Elementary. The superintendent will recommend a $2,088,000 contract award, also to Phillips Way, to air condition the Youth’s Benefit Elementary primary building and a $960,400 award to JLN Construction for HVAC upgrades at Hall’s Cross Roads Elementary School. Funding for each of the above projects was provided by Harford County government in fiscal year 2011.
In other business, Superintendent Tomback will recommend a sole source contract award to Young Audiences of Maryland, Inc., in the amount of $380,386 per year under a three-year agreement, with an annual renewal option. The contract is for on-site professional development services to improve student performance in reading and math at each of the five Title I elementary schools in HCPS : William Paca/Old Post Road, Magnolia, Hall’s Cross Roads, George D. Lisby and Havre de Grace Elementary . According to the published agenda exhibits, the Young Audience’s program has been used successfully in two of the schools for the past two years, and a sole source contract is recommended because of the specialized and unique nature of this program.” The contract is to be financed with grant funding.
School board members will also be asked to approve a contract award to Dixie Construction in the amount of $991,941 for the Cedarwood Gravity Sewer Project at Red Pump Elementary School. The contract amount includes an option for a 30 by 44 ft. pavilion for the Harford County Department of Parks and Recreation, which will fund the $87,250 cost of the pavilion.
Also recommended is a contract award for Title I educational services for eligible non-public school students. Funding for these supplemental instructional services comes from federal grant dollars channeled through the State of Maryland. The recommended award is to Catapult Learning of Camden, NJ in the amount of $105,000 for one year, with an option to renew for two additional one-year terms.
Maryland General Assembly Legislative Session Update
Board members will receive a wrap-up of the 2012 Maryland General Assembly legislative session. Among the education-related bills that have been signed into law or await the governor’s signature is Senate Bill 362, which gradually raises the age of compulsory education from 15 to 17 years. According to the published legislative report, “beginning with the 2015-2016 school year, the age of compulsory school attendance increases from 15 to 16 for any child who turns 16 on or after July 1, 2015; and beginning with the 2017-2018 school year, the age of compulsory attendance increases from 16 to 17 for any child who turns 17 on or after July 1, 2017. There are a number of exemptions from the requirement that may be waived by the State Superintendent of Schools.”
State funding for local school operating budgets remains uncertain due the failure of the legislature to pass a budget reconciliation bill and the lack of agreement on a state revenue package. The legislature also failed to pass a proposed shift of the cost of teacher pensions from the state to local governments; however, a special session is expected to be called to deal with this and other budget issues. Gov. Martin O’Malley has until July 1 to call for the special session.
Regarding state funding for the HCPS capital budget, the published legislative wrap-up reports that the school system “requested approximately $15,706,131 for four projects and received $2,646,000 for Magnolia Middle School HVAC Systemic as well as $9,648,000 of the requested $11,400,000 for the Red Pump Elementary School state reimbursement.” Additional allocations may be made in May, based on recommendations by the state Interagency Committee on School Construction (IAC). HCPS will also receive $1.1 million under the state program for aging schools, according to the legislative report.
HCPS School Calendar
Due to a recent change in the dates for state testing made by the Maryland State Department of Education, school board members will be asked to approve a change to the HCPS school calendar for next year. March 8, 2013 had been planned as an elementary early dismissal day, but will now become an MSA testing day for elementary schools. School board members will be asked to switch the elementary early dismissal day from March 8 to Friday, March 15.
A proposed calendar for the 2013-14 school year will be presented for approval. Monday, August 26, 3013 is the proposed first day of school for students in kindergarten through grade 12. With no inclement weather days used, the last day of school for students in kindergarten through 11th grade is Monday, June 9, 2014. The state of Maryland requires 180 student days per school year.
A transfer of $210,000 between capital accounts is on the agenda to fund software for “purchasing, budgeting and the integrated business systems which need to be periodically updated with the vendors upgrades.” The funds are to come from the capital account for Campus Hills Elementary School, a project originally planned to reduce overcrowding in Bel Air. The Campus Hills project was later put on hold in favor of building the new Red Pump Elementary School.
Board members will make a final decision on a refinancing plan for the A.A. Roberty Building Certificates of Deposit and energy performance leases. According to a March report by school officials, the refinancing strategy is slated to net the school system up to $700,000 in year one savings.
During a period of board recognitions, Sarah S.S. Spencer will be inducted into the HCPS Educator Hall of Fame. Other recognitions include the Destination Imagination Global Tournament qualifiers, winners of the Young Authors Writing Contest and the Harford County schools included in the 2011 Maryland State Department of Education’s School Performance Program, which recognizes achievement and subgroup improvement based on the Maryland School Assessment.
The consent agenda includes the monthly report on personnel, which includes the names of employees who have left the school system, have been placed on leaves of absence, or are newly employed.
School board members will be asked to approve a number of resolutions. Among the graduating class of 2012, students in the top five percent in academic achievement will be congratulated as Merit Scholastic Award winners. Other resolutions to be approved will recognize the following: Teacher Appreciation Week (May 6 – 12), School Nurses Day (May 9), Pupil Personnel Worker Week (May 14 -18); National Physical Fitness and Sports Month in HCPS (May); School Nutrition Employee Appreciation Week (May 7 – 11); and Home and Hospital Teachers Appreciation Week (April 30 – May 4).
As always, the meeting will conclude with a report from Superintendent Tomback.
Below is the published agenda for the April 30 meeting, which is set to begin at 6:30 p.m. in the boardroom at the A.A. Roberty Building on Hickory Avenue in Bel Air. The public comment period is set to begin a 6:55 p.m. Please note that published agendas are subject to change.
April 30, 2012
Board Open Session 5:40 P.M. – Board Room
Board Closed Session 5:45 P.M. – Executive Conference Room
Board Business Meeting 6:30 P.M. – Board Room
6:30 P.M. Call to Order – Dr. Leonard D. Wheeler, President
Quorum Roll Call
Adoption of Agenda
Pledge of Allegiance
6:35 P.M. Recognition
– HCPS Educator Hall of Fame – Sarah S.S. Spencer
– Destination Imagination Global Tournament Qualifiers
– Young Authors Writing Contest Winners
– School Performance Recognition Program
6:55 P.M. Public Comment
7:05 P.M. Introductions
7:10 P.M. Board Committee Reports and Comments
7:20 P.M. A. Consent Agenda:
1) Monthly Report on Personnel, Non-Retention (Goal 3)
2) Minutes of Previous Meetings: (Goal 1-4) April 4, 2012 April 10, 2012
3) Decision on Award of Contract: William Paca Elementary School – Air Conditioning & Old Post Road Restroom ADA Upgrades (Goal 4)
4) Decision on Award of Contract: Youth’s Benefit Elementary School – Air Conditioning Installation Project (Goal 4)
5) Decision on Award of Contract: Hall’s Cross Roads Elementary School – HVAC Upgrades (Goal 4)
6) Decision on Award of Contract: Instructional Development Professional Program (Goal 1)
7) Decision on Contract Award: Red Pump Elementary School/Cedarwood Gravity Sewer Project, Bid Tab Sheet, List of Alternates (Goal 4)
8.) Decision on Contract Award: Title 1 Educational Services for Eligible Non-Public School Students (Goal 1)
9) Decision on 2012-13 Proposed Calendar Adjustments, Ms. Teri Kranefeld (Goal 2)
10) Proposed Resolutions: (Goal 3)
– School Nutrition Employee Appreciation Week
– Home and Hospital Teachers Appreciation Week
– 2012 Merit Scholastic Awards
– National Physical Fitness and Sports Month
– Pupil Personnel Worker Week
– School Nurses Day
– Teacher Appreciation Week
7:25 P.M. B. Decision on Refinancing the A.A. Roberty Building Certificates of Participation and the Harford County Phase I and Phase II Energy Leases, Mr. James M. Jewell (Goal 3)
8:30 P.M. F. Superintendent’s Report
Future Meetings Review