Aspirational Goal 3
Aspirational Goal 3: FCPS will pursue and utilize all resources strategically and responsibly to achieve identified outcomes and inspire confidence.
Priority 5: FCPS will provide equitable distribution of all resources based on the varied needs of students and schools.
Priority 6: FCPS will promote clear communication and transparency in allocation of resources.
After earning the Association of School Business (ASBO) Pathway to the Meritorious Budget Award (MBA) in 2020, FCPS was successful in earning the MBA for the fiscal years 2021 and 2022 budget years. The ASBO MBA is annual award earned by school districts based on their commitment to sound fiscal management and budgetary policies. Thus, the award promotes and recognizes the best budget presentation practices in school districts for accurate, transparent, and clearly communicated budgets.
To earn the award, school districts submit their application and budget documents to a panel of school financial professionals who review them for success in demonstrating they have met the necessary and rigorous award criteria/requirements. The process also provides feedback that districts can use to improve their budget documents. Additional information on the MBA award can be found here: Meritorious Budget Award & Pathway to the MBA.
Creating an optimal learning environment is critical to the learning and development of students. Optimal learning environments not only consider academic, psychological, and social factors but environmental qualities of a school and/or classroom. A 2017 report by The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health discusses what we already know about the impact of environmental qualities (e.g., temperature, lighting, air quality, acoustics, etc.) on student performance as well as additional research needed (see: Impact of School Buildings on Student Health and Performance). In addition to this report, decades of past research also support the impact of school building and/or classroom design and its impact on student learning.
In 2018, sufficiency standards were developed by the state to assess classroom learning environments. Since the onset of the COVID pandemic, FCPS has not been able to realistically assess the classroom environment as not all students were in-person. Beginning in the 2021-2022 school year, students returned to in-person learning; however, the sufficiency parameters have not been formally measured by the state. In the fall of 2021, FCPS conducted an indoor air quality assessment using a widespread sample of over 1,000 classrooms across FCPS schools. This “point in time” snapshot was positive for FCPS and revealed that very few classrooms (≤5%) sampled were outside temperature parameters. Twenty-four percent of the sample classrooms fell outside the humidity parameters. FCPS will seek to address the humidity anomalies where possible.
Moving forward, FCPS will continue efforts in ensuring optimal learning environments in its schools. Using nearly real-time monitoring, FCPS will assess the following: temperature, lighting, relative humidity, carbon dioxide, and acoustics. Discussions on how to assess classroom environments and/or empirically sample classrooms will continue. The ultimate goal is to identify any potential environmental issues within the school building and/or classroom and to proactively resolve the issue.
FCPS seeks to decrease the mobility rates among teaching staff (e.g., teachers and teacher specialists) for Tier 2 schools. In the 2019-2020 school year, approximately 10% of teaching staff transferred from a Tier 2 school to another school building or location within FCPS. With the exception of high schools, a decrease in mobility rates among teaching staff in Tier 2 schools is noted across FCPS school in the 2020-2021 school year. It is important to note that identification of Tier 2 schools status may vary each school year.
Strategies employed by FCPS to reduce staff mobility in Tier 2 schools includes: a) creating collaborative networks among schools; b) focusing on increasing the number of experiences teachers; c) providing differentiated funding and staffing; d) highlighting unique opportunities for staff, and d) participating in multiple job fairs.