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HCPS Board Meeting Highlights

Monday, May 24, 2004

At the business meeting held on Monday, May 24, 2004, at Bel Air Middle School, the following actions and discussions took place.

Recognition

The Board of Education inducted two retired Harford County Public School educators into the HCPS Educator Hall of Fame. Inducted were Paul E. Bowman, Jr., a 33-year teacher/administrator with the school system; and Doris L. Williams a 26-year teacher/administrator with the Harford County Public Schools.

Also recognized were the seven Destination Imagination Teams which will represent Harford County Public Schools in the Global DI Tournament to be held at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville May 26-29. Recognized were three teams from Bel Air Middle School, two teams from Ring Factory Elementary School, and one each from Prospect Mill Elementary and Southampton Middle School. Teams have qualified based on their performance at the recent state DI Tournament.

General Public Comments

Meghan Allen of Fallston High School, five year member of the Harford County Regional Association of Student Councils, urged the Board to provide the student representative to the Board (SROB) with partial voting rights. Ms. Allen recommended a compromise which would allow the Board to determine the parameters for the SROB vote.

Action Items

The Board unanimously passed items on the Consent Agenda including Monthly Report on Personnel; Minutes of the Business Meeting on April 29 and 26, 2004; Proposed Resolution on 03-04 Student Representative to the Board Michael D. Morey; Transfer of Bus Contracts; Approval of Prepackaged Snack Cakes for Group I; and Approval of Electric Supply Agreements.

The Board unanimously approved final budget transfers for FY2004 to prevent potential shortfalls in various categories. Funds will be shifted to cover the $1,144,000 potential shortfall. The budget transfers must be approved by the County Executive and the County Council to go into effect.

The Board unanimously agreed to consider information provided by a committee looking into athletic activities and missed class time. The committee will continue to review proposals and return to the Board for specific approvals.

The Board unanimously approved a series of promotions for administrative personnel and mentor teachers effective July 1. The Board also received a report from the Superintendent on impending transfers of administrative personnel and mentor teachers. For a complete summary of the changes, call the Harford County Public Schools Office of Public Information at 410-588-5203.

Presentations

The Board received the Quarterly Financial Report for the period ending March 31, 2004 reflecting revenues and expenditures to that point.

The Board received proposed updates/changes to sections 02.01 (Board of Education of Harford County) and 02.02 (Superintendent of Schools) of the Board Policy Manual. The proposals are a part of the five year cycle in which 20% of the Policy Manual is reviewed each year. The Board is expected to take action on the proposed updates/changes at its June 28, 2004 meeting (a complete copy of the proposed updates/changes can be seen on the HCPS web site).

The Board received a presentation of the school bus transportation contract revisions. The proposal will be considered by the Board at its June 28, 2004 meeting (a complete copy of the proposal can be seen on the HCPS web site).

Superintendent's Report

Superintendent Jacqueline Haas discussed recent proposals by the federal government involving 12th grade exit exams for graduating seniors; the recommended end of the Carl D. Perkins grant program; and the current state of adequate yearly progress parameters being provided by the Maryland State Department of Education. Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction Gerald Scarborough provided a report on developments on the Master Plan submission for the 2004-05 school year.

New Business from Board Members

Student Representative Michael Morey recommended the Board take heed to the recommendations made earlier by Ms. Allen.

Mr. Wolkow mentioned a recent musical concert in which the Edgewood High School developed a Murzda Award. He also expressed his opinion that the Board should be cautious in passing a policy that would increase student class size.

Mr. Thomas commented on a recent article in "The Aegis" concerning gangs in Harford schools. He said the article pointed out the school system had been resistant in working with the law enforcement agencies on the gang issue but that the situation had never been brought to the Board. He said the school system and law enforcement need to work together on the issue and that he would ask the Superintendent to invite the Sheriff to brief Senior Staff and other school leadership at the August leadership sessions. (Mrs. Haas told the Board that the school system had been working with the Sheriff's Office involving the gang problem and that regular briefings had occurred with central staff and school -based leadership as well as with teachers.)

Board member Robin Rich said the budget needs to be built in such a way that an increased number of teachers would be embedded in the budget.

Board member Salina Pleasant-Grice said she and other Board members had attended the 19th Annual Cesky Scholarship Awards recently and congratulated the two Fallston High School student athletes on receiving the top $5,000 awards.

Mr. Magee commented that he had been called out of his home on a Sunday afternoon to comment on the "Aegis" article about gangs. He said the story had been inaccurate and urged the media to be more careful in its reporting in the future and to consult with the Superintendent, Board members or public information office prior to writing the story. He also commented on a recent concert held at Havre de Grace High School to benefit the James Harris stadium project.


This document contains a summary of issues that came before the Board of Education of Harford County and actions taken by the Board at the public business meeting at the meeting date referenced on the document. These are not official Board-approved minutes. Board minutes are not posted on the HCPS web site because of the time lapse that occurs between the meeting, their preparation, and ultimate approval by the Board.
For copies of approved Board minutes, please e-mail Lynn.Hutchinson@hcps.org