• Countywide Science and Engineering Fair Winners

    Posted by Dian Nelson at 3/26/2015
    Two Going to International Fair
    Science students throughout Frederick County presented 157 projects at this year’s middle and high school Science and Engineering Fair on Saturday, March 21. More than 50 professionals from the Frederick community judged the entries.

    Of 16 participating high school students, Governor Thomas Johnson High School senior Rebecca Freed won the grand prize for her first-place Biochemistry project, Interrogating Ras Function with Protein Mimetics. First runner up this year is Urbana High School student Matthew Green for his first-place Animal Science project, JAWS IV: An Analytic Study of Shark Attack Patterns Based on External Factors and the Circumstances of the Encounter. Both qualify to represent Frederick County at the 2015 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Pittsburgh, PA, May 10-15.

    Other first-place high school winners are Brunswick student Alexander Beall in Engineering Mechanics and home-schooled student Caroline Pritt in Systems Software. In addition Linganore High senior Anna Spitale placed first in Booklet Cover Art Design.

    Second-place high school winners are Middletown students Morgan Hoffman in Cellular and Molecular Biology and Frederika Rentzperis in Physics and Astronomy.

    Third-place high school winners are Tuscarora student Mahnoor Khan in Earth and Environmental Science, tied with Urbana student Jackie Liu; Urbana student Nathan Davis in Engineering Mechanics; and Walkervsville student Arvind Ravichandran in Computational Biology and Bioinformatics.

    Of 141 middle school entries, Urbana 8th grader Brin Strouse won the grand prize for her first-place Earth and Environmental Sciences project, Don’t Acid Rain on My Outdoor Parade: National, Local and Habitat Studies of the Effects of Acid Rain on Outdoor Recreation Settings. The runner up was Urbana 6th grader Charlie Bundy, who placed first in Materials Science for Baseball Comparison.

    Other middle school first-place winners are Ballenger Creek students Krishnav Bose in Systems Software, Kaden Kettleman in Robotics and Intelligent Machines, and Sanskruti Patel in Engineering Mechanics; Urbana students Charlie Giglio in Microbiology, Charlotte Hively in Energy: Chemical and Physical, Grace Scheirey in Plant Sciences, and Sanjana Subramanian in Behavioral and Social Sciences; Visitation Academy student Noorul Waheed tied for first in Chemistry; Walkersville student Eleanor McMahon tied for first in Chemistry; West Frederick students Alanis Gonzalez-Quiles in Biomedical Health Sciences and Van Mawi in Environmental Engineering; and Windsor Knolls students Abigail Beckman in Animal Science and Evan Gobien in Physics and Astronomy. In addition Oakdale 7th grader Megan Chang placed first in Booklet Cover Art Design.

    Second-place middle school winners are Ballenger Creek student Brent Peate in Engineering Mechanics; Banner student Anisa Asad (tied with Emma Regan) in Animal Science; Urbana students Sania Khazi in Microbiology, Anya Knappenberger in Physics and Astronomy, Aahana Kothandaraman in Plant Sciences, Emma Regan (tied with Anisa Asad) in Animal Science, Chase Taras in Chemistry, and Soujanya Viswanathan in Embedded Systems; the Oakdale student team of Marleigh Beck, Lauren Pryor and Stella Zodet in Biomedical Health Sciences; Visitation student Katie Frutiger in Materials Science; and Walkersville students Ryan Frank in Earth and Environmental Science and Thomas Sniezek in Behavioral and Social Science.

    Third-place middle school winners are Ballenger Creek student Diego Ayala in Energy: Chemical and Physical; Banner student Aiden Green in Engineering Mechanics; Brunswick student Veronica Sadtler in Animal Science; Middletown student Aiden Murphy in Physics and Astronomy; Urbana students Vincent Galliani in Materials Science, Radhika Patel in Behavioral and Social Sciences, Isabella Slyman in Microbiology and Jessica Wu in Plant Sciences; Walkersville student Danny Morris in Biomedical Health Sciences.

    Middle school honorable mention awards went to Frederick Classical Charter School student Meghan Moberly in Plant Sciences; the Middletown team of Samantha Dillard and Jaime Nester in Chemistry and Kaatelyn Lakin in Biomedical Health Sciences; Urbana students Lucy Horn in Energy and Mukesh Loganathan in Microbiology; Visitation student Celia Thompson in Physics and Astronomy; Walkersville student Andrew Weiss in Animal Science; West Frederick students Allie Mitchell in Behavioral and Social Sciences, Chris Pondoc in Mathematics and the team of Jamie Roan and Nikolas Struntz in Cellular and Molecular Biology; and Windsor Knolls student Rylan Puderbaugh in Engineering Mechanics.

    The annual fair is sponsored through a partnership between Frederick County Public Schools and the Frederick Jaycees, with financial support from MedImmune, Inc.
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  • FCPS Delivers Strong Economic Value

    Posted by Dian Nelson at 3/24/2015
    BOE to Hear BEACON Report, Public Welcome
    The Board of Education of Frederick County anticipates good news at its regular 6 p.m. meeting on Wednesday, March 25 when the agenda includes learning about the economic value of the county’s public school system. The public is welcome to hear how Salisbury University’s Business Economic and Community Outreach Network (BEACON) analyzed the economic, employment and fiscal impacts of Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS).

    The study examined the value of FCPS diplomas and other degrees earned, the impact on local wealth and the value of reduced future public costs. The report focused on four major categories of economic value. The categories are benefits from FCPS operations, value of diplomas and degrees awarded, economic development impacts and reduction in public costs.

    Analysis of economic and employment benefits from FCPS operations, the first category, includes the impact of dollars spent on salaries and local-vendor supplies and services. This direct spending that stays within the county creates a “multiplier” or “trickle down” effect as money is re-spent in the local economy. The study found that every $1 FCPS spends in operational monies retained in the county results in total local spending of $1.48. Similarly every $1 of capital spending retained in the county results in total local spending of $1.61. Every $1 in capital spending retained in Maryland results in total local spending of $1.80. Every $1 million in FCPS capital spending results in 8.4 additional in-county jobs.
    Examining the economic value of degrees awarded, the second category, the BEACON found that in recent years FCPS has annually graduated students who will realize additional lifetime earnings of about $883.45 million, in estimated present value. The county income tax to be paid on the additional earnings is about $1.8 million per graduating class. Based on the improved college readiness of FCPS seniors, about $1.2 billion in additional lifetime earnings can be attributed to FCPS graduates forecasted to graduate college. The present value of county income tax on these additional earnings is about $25.45 million per graduation class.
    Research into economic development impacts, the third category, indicates that additional economic activity generated by FCPS graduates who work and spend in the county positively affects property values and property tax revenues. Each graduating class is estimated to add $116 million in real property values and $1.23 million in real property tax revenues.
    Finally, analysis of reduction in public costs, the fourth category, revealed that over the past five years, each FCPS graduating class was associated with about $124 million savings in public healthcare costs, over $81 million savings in future crime-related costs and over $9 million in future welfare costs.
    FCPS has posted the full report online: http://www.fcps.org/beacon and under the www.fcps.org/boe section, at the link to The Economic Value of the Frederick County, Maryland, Public School System: Dollars & Cents and Beyond.
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  • FCPS Recognized for Financial Transparency

    Posted by Dian Nelson at 3/18/2015
    Earns Highest Possible Accolade

    Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS) earned the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA). This is the sixth consecutive year that the school system has earned the highest form of recognition for accurate and full disclosure in governmental accounting and financial reporting.
    “Every year, FCPS earns national recognition for its stewardship of taxpayer dollars. The people of Frederick County can take pride in the fact that our school system is managing its budget responsibly and transparently. Responsible financial stewardship is a hallmark of FCPS,” says Leslie Pellegrino, executive director of FCPS Fiscal Services.
    Pellegrino commends Budget and Finance director Robert Reilly and all FCPS Budget and Finance Department staff for their dedication and hard work throughout the year in keeping the school system’s financial records in good order: “Our staff is committed to accurately handling and reporting all financial transactions. The dedication that they bring to their work on the behalf of taxpayers has resulted in this outstanding recognition. Every taxpayer in the county can be proud of their hard work. The financial accountability FCPS provides to the public and the resulting honors FCPS has received set our school system apart.”
    According to the GFOA--a nonprofit professional association serving about 17,500 governance finance professionals--attaining the certificate is a significant accomplishment for a government entity and its management. An impartial GFOA panel determined that the FCPS Budget and Finance Department meets “the high standards of the program including demonstrating a constructive ‘spirit of full disclosure’ to clearly communicate” the school system’s finances.
    FCPS posts budget information online at www.fcps.org/budget.
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  • FCPS STEM Community Night

    Posted by Dian Nelson at 3/12/2015
    On Thursday, March 19, the public is invited to Frederick County Public Schools’ 3rd Annual STEM Community Night at Oakdale High (5850 Eaglehead Dr., Ijamsville) from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

    Guests will have the opportunity interact with teachers and their students from elementary through high school levels about science, technology, engineering and math—STEM—education in public schools and see the various projects students are working on.

    This is a family event for all ages!
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  • "Life after High School" Transition Fair

    Posted by Dian Nelson at 3/9/2015
    Friday, March 27, 8:15 AM-1 PM

    The 20th annual “Life after High School” Transition Fair for Frederick County students who receive special education services or “Section 504” accommodations and their families will take place Friday, March 27 from 8:15 a.m. until 1 p.m. at Frederick Community College.

    Sponsored by Frederick County Public Schools, the Maryland Division of Rehabilitation Services and Frederick Community College, the fair provides information about post-secondary schools and services. Presentations will include information about employer expectations, the paperwork process, college expectations and services, certification and training programs, and employment options. The event will also include an exhibitors’ fair and FCC tours.

    Student registration forms and permission slips are available from school-based case managers and are due when completed to the school by March 16.

    For additional information, please contact the FCPS Special Education Office, 301-644-5300.
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  • Kindergarten and PreK Registration

    Posted by Dian Nelson at 3/9/2015
    Starts Monday, March 16

    Registration for Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS) fall 2015 kindergarten classes begins Monday, March 16 at local elementary schools. Registration will continue on school days between 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. FCPS recommends calling your local school for specific hours. Schools strongly encourage early registration so they have time to predict accurate class size and hire adequate staff.

    To enter kindergarten in the fall 2015, a child must be five on or before September 1, 2015. Those registering will need the child’s immunization record, proof of birth date and proof of residency. All kindergarten classes at public elementary schools in Frederick County are full-day programs, generally 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekdays.

    Applications for FCPS fall 2015 pre-kindergarten classes also begins Monday, March 16. FCPS recommends calling your local school for specific hours.

    To enter pre-kindergarten in fall 2015, a child must be four on or before September 1, 2015. Students are selected based on criteria such as eligibility for free or reduced-price meals or factors that increase a child’s risk of not being successful in school. Proof of eligibility is required.

    For pre-kindergarten applications, provide the child’s immunization record, proof of birth date and proof of residency. If planning to have the child enter with automatic priority status based on free or reduced-price meal eligibility, also provide the following: three consecutive pay stubs from the past six months, or a W2 form showing 2014 earnings, or a letter from an employer on letterhead stating the applicant’s family income, social services agency or foster care determination. If the child has a documented special need please provide a copy of the Individualized Education Program (IEP).

    With sufficient enrollment, FCPS will offer pre-kindergarten classes, all of which are half day, at the following elementary schools: Ballenger Creek, Brunswick, Carroll Manor, Emmitsburg, Glade, Hillcrest, Lincoln, Monocacy, Middletown Primary, New Market, North Frederick, Oakdale, Orchard Grove, Spring Ridge, Thurmont Primary, Twin Ridge, Valley, Waverley, Whittier, Wolfsville and Woodsboro. All other schools are paired with classes at these locations. Registration for all pre-kindergarten classes occurs at the child’s home school.

    The above information does not apply to charter schools, which enroll students by lottery.

    For more information please refer to http://www.fcps.org/page/45.

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  • BOE Reappoints Superintendent Alban

    Posted by Dian Nelson at 3/4/2015
    The Board of Education reappointed Dr. Theresa Alban as superintendent of Frederick County Public Schools at today’s meeting. Her new term will begin on July 1, 2015, and run through June 30, 2019.
    “Since 2011, Dr. Alban has demonstrated exceptional leadership skills as superintendent. She has focused on boosting student achievement, building relationships with parents, families, businesses, and the wider community, and demanding excellence at every level of FCPS as an organization,” said Brad Young, BOE president. “Her driving goal is to expect excellence everywhere, and she has consistently delivered on that goal.”
    Mr. Young noted that while Dr. Alban’s new contract makes no adjustment to the superintendent’s base salary, it does stipulate that the superintendent will receive annual increases equivalent to those provided to other school system employees. The Board also provided additional contributions to her retirement benefits.
    Dr. Alban’s tenure as superintendent has been marked by dramatic changes to the face of public education in Frederick County and throughout the state. Moving to new curricular standards, new student assessments, and a new model for teacher evaluations are among the most far-reaching changes that Dr. Alban has navigated. At the same time, she has guided FCPS through the most challenging national and local economic conditions in almost a century. In the face of all of this, Dr. Alban has proven to be a passionate advocate for students, teachers, and families and has maintained a sharp focus on the achievement of our students. At the same time, Dr. Alban has worked with the Board of Education to develop a new forward-looking strategic plan for the school system. Her work has helped to ensure the continued strength of public education in Frederick County.
    Dr. Alban leads one of the larger school systems in Maryland. She directs a budget of over $500 million, responds to the needs of almost 41,000 students and their families, and manages more than 5,000 employees. It’s a 24/7 job that requires enormous dedication and energy.
    Her goals for the next four years include effectively implementing the school system’s new strategic plan, continuing to close gaps in student achievement while increasing achievement for all students, and continuing to build strong and productive ties with families, businesses, and institutions and organizations throughout the county.
    The Board appreciates Dr. Alban’s ongoing commitment to the students and families of Frederick County and looks forward to her continued leadership of FCPS.
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  • Academic Tournament Championship

    Posted by Lisa Newcomer at 2/26/2015
    Friday, February 27, 5:45 PM, Linganore High; Open to the Public!
    Academic Tournament teams from all 10 Frederick County public high schools are preparing for heated competition in the championship that begins Friday, February 27, 5:45 PM, at Linganore High. This event is open free to the public.

    In its 34rd year, the local Academic Tournament promises to bring excitement as students go head to head, putting their knowledge and recall to the test. After all teams have competed in final matches, the three high-scoring teams will continue in the championship until a winner is declared that evening. The championship team gets to showcase the trophy for the year.

    Matches have taken place most Fridays since January, alternating locations. Since 1982, Linganore teams have won the tournament nine times, Frederick High has won six, Gov. Thomas Johnson has won five, Middletown and Walkersville have each won four, and teams from Brunswick, Catoctin, Tuscarora, and Urbana have each won once.

    Walkersville High teacher Thomas Kollai will serve as master of ceremonies, reading questions at the event, with Academic Tournament coordinator Nick Diaz assisting.

    Tradition also includes bestowing the Curriculum Specialists’ Award at the championship to an individual or group, to be announced, who has made significant contributions to the tournament’s success.
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  • Summer Engineering Course for High School Students to be offered at Tuscarora High School

    Posted by Lisa Newcomer at 2/26/2015
    Frederick County Public Schools partners with Johns Hopkins University to Offer High School Engineering Course
    Frederick County Public Schools is pleased to announce it will once again offer the Johns Hopkins University Engineering Innovation Summer Program to motivated high school students. Engineering Innovation has been offered at Tuscarora High School since 2009.

    Engineering Innovation is an exciting college level summer program for motivated high school students with an aptitude in math and science and an interest in (or curiosity about) engineering. It is the summer version of a freshman course offered to undecided engineering majors at Johns Hopkins. The semester-long course has been condensed into four weeks and is made available to high school students in the summer. In four weeks students complete lab activities in computer engineering, chemical engineering, electrical engineering, material science, civil engineering, robotics, and mechanical engineering. They also prepare a presentation in response to a Request for Proposal, learn about engineering economics, and write a research paper. They take weekly quizzes and a comprehensive final exam. Students earning an A or B in the course receive three Johns Hopkins college credits.

    The course will be offered at Tuscarora High School from June 29 through July 24, Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will be no class on Friday July 3rd. Prerequisites are Algebra II, trigonometry, a lab science (chemistry, biology, and/or physics) and experience with a spreadsheet application.

    For more information or to apply to the program, please visit http://engineering.jhu.edu/ei/

    About The Johns Hopkins University, Whiting School of Engineering, Center for Educational Outreach

    In 2003, the Center for Educational Outreach was established by the Whiting School of Engineering to increase the number of youth who pursue science technology engineering and mathematics (STEM) education and careers, particularly women and underrepresented minorities. Through partnerships with local schools, youth-serving nonprofits, local corporations, and faculty, the Center for Educational Outreach works to make a broad impact on the community and create effective, scalable, sustainable programs.

    FCPS Contact
    Kim Day, STEM Coordinator

    JHU Contact
    Karen Borgsmiller; Director of Engineering Innovation
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  • March Is Youth Art Month

    Posted by Lisa Newcomer at 2/25/2015
    All-County Student Exhibit
    March brings vibrant colors to brighten even the dreariest winter day in Frederick County. Visit the Frederick County Public Schools’ All-County Student Art Exhibit at the Delaplaine Visual Arts Education Center. Open free to the public, the exhibit features more than 300 imaginative two- and three-dimensional creations by students from each public school.
    Catch the festive opening Saturday, March 7 from 3-5 p.m. The show continues throughout March during the Delaplaine’s usual hours, 9-5 Mondays-Saturdays and 11-5 Sundays. The Center is at 40 S. Carroll Street in downtown Frederick. The gallery is also open some evening hours when the Center offers classes; for the evening schedule, please call 301-698-0656 or visit www.delaplaine.org.
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