Monthly Archives: December 2016

Two PGCPS Teens Charged in Death of Man Found Burned in Maryland Park

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Demiko Aiken

Homicide Unit detectives arrested and charged two teenagers in connection with the homicide in Capitol Heights on Monday. One of the suspects is being charged as an adult. He’s 17-year-old Demiko Aiken of the 5600 block of Rollins Lane in Capitol Heights. He’s charged with first and second degree murder. The second suspect, a 16-year-old, is charged as a juvenile with accessory-after-the-fact.

On December 19th, at about 9:50 am, a citizen flagged down a patrol officer after seeing the victim, Rayshand Cotton, on the ground in the 1100 block of Brooke Road. The victim was suffering from severe burns and was pronounced dead at the scene. An autopsy determined Cotton died from a gunshot wound.

Through the course of the investigation, Aiken was developed as a suspect. He and the second suspect were arrested last night. They were driving the victim’s stolen SUV in the area of Rollins Lane in Capitol Heights. Detectives believe the motive for the murder was the robbery of the SUV. Aiken and the victim were acquaintances. The 16-year-old has admitted to helping Aiken dispose of the body after the murder. He is charged as a juvenile with accessory after the fact, police said.

Aiken is in the custody of the Department of Correction on a no-bond status. He is being charged as an adult with first- and second-degree murder.

Anyone with information on this case is asked to call the Homicide Unit at 301-772-4925. Callers wishing to remain anonymous may call Crime Solvers at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477), text “PGPD plus your message” to CRIMES (274637) on your cell phone or go to www.pgcrimesolvers.com and submit a tip online.

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Maryland residents tackle topic of racism.

What about in Prince George’s County Maryland?……Still1220_00001_1482294569880_7435270_ver1.0.jpgHOWARD CO., MD (WUSA9) – More than 400 people packed an auditorium at Howard County Community College Tuesday night to discuss a recent increase in racist incidents in the area.

WUSA9 learned a Howard County student recently wrote a racial slur on social media. There have been other racists acts in the community this year too.

In January, a viral video showed an Ellicott City student calling blacks an “inferior race”.

Maryland Congressman Elijah Cummings attended the discussion. He told WUSA9 he believes many racists were emboldened by some of the opinions expressed during 2016 Presidential campaign.

“The election we just went through caused a lot of people who may have had these negative feelings to suddenly begin to express them,” he said.

Columbia resident Jonah Hornum, 18, welcomed the chance to talk about how racism impacts people in his community. He spoke at the event about how some of his fellow students bully him about his Jewish heritage.

“It made me feel upset and disgusted that in 2016 this would happen,” he said.

He said he hoped by telling his story he would be able to stop others from committing offensive acts.

If you see a hate crime in Maryland, you’re encouraged to call a new state hotline at 1-866-481-8361.

via wusa9

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PGCPS High School aiming to ease racial tensions after brawl

still1219_00020_1482206468824_2454322_ver1-0_640_360-1CAPITOL HEIGHTS, MD (WUSA9) – A special student advisory team that will deal with cultural conflicts is being formed at Central High School after a cafeteria brawl Friday that pitted African-American students against Latino students.

The brawl was caught on video and resulted in three students being treated at a hospital for minor injuries.  No charges have been filed.

Many African-American students who spoke to WUSA9 said race played no role in the brawl. However, a reluctant Latino student said he sometimes feels intimidated at the school.

According to a robo-call and email being sent to Central parents Tuesday night, the student advisory team will work with Principal Keisha Wallace to help develop a positive school climate while administrators work with the school system’s Diversity Office on further measures.  Additional staff will be assigned to monitor lunch hours, the principal announced.

The following statement was released by Prince George’s County Public Schools:

“Prince George’s County Public Schools officials are aware of last week’s incident at Central High School. We are working with school administrators to maintain a school environment that respects others’ cultural differences and addresses any safety concerns.

Principal Keishia Wallace called students’ homes this afternoon and sent an electronic message to families that addresses the incident and next steps. Additional school staff has been assigned to the cafeteria during lunch periods. School staff will be working in partnership with the PGCPS Diversity Office to maintain a positive school climate. The principal is also creating a student advisory team comprised of diverse voices. A letter will be sent home with all students tomorrow emphasizing this message.

We are focused now on alleviating student and parent concerns. Every effort will be made to keep students safe and support a welcoming learning environment for all students.” 

The following message was sent home to parents by Central High School:

“On Friday, December 16, a student fight occurred in the cafeteria during lunch. The incident originated as a food fight, but became physical, resulting in injuries to a few students. Staff and security personnel were stationed in the cafeteria at the time as part of our daily routine. Additional support was immediately extended by School Security and other school staff members to intervene and resume lunch service to all students.

An investigation is ongoing. Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken in accordance with the guidelines of the Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook.  The safety of scholars is paramount and all efforts will be taken to maintain a school environment that is conducive to the highest levels of student learning.

As a school community, we are committed to maintaining a learning environment that encourages respect for all, regardless of cultural differences. The Prince George’s County Public Schools Diversity Office and other central office supports  are partnering with Central in this effort. Additionally, a Principal’s Student Advisory Team, made up of a diverse group of students, will be created to ensure student voices are heard.”

via WUSA9image

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PG County man arrested on child pornography charges, over 100 videos found in his home

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Aaron Davis was arrested on charges of possession and distribution of child pornography in Prince George’s County. (Photo, Maryland State Police)

A man was arrested on child pornography charges Tuesday in Prince George’s County, according to police.

Members of the Maryland State Police Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force arrested Aaron C. Davis, 25, of Suitland while accompanied by members of Homeland Security and the FBI after getting a search warrant for his home.

Authorities recovered over 100 video files of child porn at Davis’ home.

Maryland State Police began investigating after the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office informed them that they had discovered an internet address which the sheriff’s office says was possibly distributing child pornography.

Davis was charged with one count of distribution of child pornography and four counts of possession of child pornography. State police say Davis could face additional charges.

via wjla

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Maryland state school board considering vouchers, charters for failing schools

Headshots for Bellwether Education. Photos by Toby Jorrin.

State school board President Andrew Smarick,

The state school board is considering bold measures — offering vouchers, creating new charter programs and establishing a statewide school district — to improve consistently low-performing schools.

The ideas — none of which has been formally proposed — would be radical departures from current practices. They’re being discussed in broad terms by board members as they work to rewrite the regulations that will govern how Maryland’s students and schools are judged beginning next school year.

It is not clear whether any of the ideas will gain the support of the full board or the public. State school board President Andrew Smarick, who has spent much of his career on education policy, says he supports change.

“Maryland has been very traditional in its approach to failing schools,” he said. “I am on the side of pushing our policymakers to be bolder on this issue because of the thousands of young lives at stake.”

Smarick has written extensively about how the federal Every Student Succeeds Act, the law passed by Congress last year to replace the testing-focused No Child Left Behind Act, could be used to put low-performing schools under the control of independent boards that would impose the accountability requirements ordinarily applied to charter schools.

After Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans, Louisiana created the Recovery School District, made up entirely of charter schools. Some believe it has improved student achievement in the city.

The Every Student Succeeds Act, or ESSA, gives states far more flexibility to decide how to assess schools.

The Maryland Board of Education released a draft this month that details its plan to comply with ESSA, but many of the most crucial points have yet to be decided. The final plan must be submitted to the U.S. Department of Education for approval next fall.

A school that fails to make progress over four years would be required to write a plan for improvement with the help of the state — an approach already in use.

Some board members say that’s not enough.

“Personally, I am not satisfied with a paper chase that gives people credit for writing plans,” Finn said.

“If we care about the kids who are getting a crummy education in schools,” he said, a more radical approach is needed.

Finn said he expects the state board to have more freedom to do what it wants with Donald Trump as president. Trump has nominated Betsy DeVos, a supporter of charter schools and vouchers, to be education secretary.

If board members decide to proceed with any of the options they are considering, they would need the approval of the state legislature and governor.

Gov. Larry Hogan has announced plans to double public funding, to $10 million, of a voucher program that gives students money to help pay for private school tuition. And in a recent letter to the school board detailing his priorities for ESSA, Hogan said he supported early intervention when schools are failing and wants to give parents options.

The General Assembly has resisted attempts by the state to take over failing schools. But after years of unsuccessful efforts to turn them around, some lawmakers say they are now open to changes.

Baltimore Mayor Catherine E. Pugh wants to take control of city schools back from the state.

Sen. Bill Ferguson says new focus is needed on solving long-term problems in the city.

“Everything should be on the table, and we should have a real urgency about this work,” said Ferguson, a Baltimore Democrat. “But we can’t do it in a way that stifles the voices of those who may be impacted.”

One approach, Smarick said, would be to “elevate the power of the family and give them other options.”

The state started the small voucher program this year. It gave students scholarships to dozens of private schools, most of them religious.

The one-year program did not gain wide support from educators.

A spokesman for the Maryland Association of Boards of Education said the organization would fight efforts to expand the voucher program.

The association does not oppose charter schools, spokesman John Woolums said.

“For the lowest-performing 5 percent [of schools] in need of comprehensive turnaround, the charter school option … has always been available to local school systems and to communities,” Woolums said.

The Maryland State Education Association, the union that represents most teachers in the state, opposes vouchers and some other options.

“This can’t be a conversation whose goal is shutting down schools and privatizing them, an approach which won’t help students,” said Cheryl Bost, the association’s vice president.

In some states, students in failing schools are allowed to attend nondistrict charter schools. In Tennessee and Louisiana, consistently low-performing schools have been taken out of from under the control of their districts.

Addressing low-performing schools is just one of the challenges confronting the board. Another is setting achievement goals for schools.

Only 40 percent of students now pass state tests. The board’s draft plan calls for schools to increase the pass rate gradually to 70 percent by 2030.

School board members point out that schools have not been able to increase pass rates by more than an average of about 2 percentage points a year. So setting the bar higher, they argue, would be unrealistic.

The board is planning meetings around the state to gather comment from educators, parents and the general public.

Smarick said the board has not yet had an extensive conversation about whether to do something “dramatic and big and different.”

“The board is still working through this,” he said.

Smarick said he envisions discussions with the Kirwan Commission, the state task force charged with rewriting the school funding formula, before major changes are introduced.

Via Baltimore sun
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Stanford Research: Investing in Public Schools Is More Effective

teacher-learning-and-leadership-and-teachers-coverThis is a project that should interest all readers of the blog as well as state and local school boards and elected officials at every level. It includes a book that reviews education issues around the globe and resources that you may access by clicking the link. The bottom line of a vast amount of research is that privatization is a failed policy, not an innovation. The most effective way to invest public dollars is in improving public schools.

Stanford Graduate School of Education Research Center Introduces Cross-National Study Central to Debates about Future of the U.S. Education System

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Ralph Rogers
Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education
650.725.8600
ralphr@stanford.edu

Stanford, CA – December 13, 2016 – In the midst of the ongoing debate and a potential shift in the U.S. approach to education, the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education (SCOPE) is pleased to introduce new research-based evidence and analysis that supports investment in public schools as a better alternative than the privatization of education.

“This book shows how public investment in education outperforms privatization across three continents, addressing this critical question as President-elect Trump’s appointee, Betsy DeVos, considers shifting U.S. education to a voucher scheme,” said Frank Adamson, PhD, the primary editor, chapter author, and Senior Policy and Research Analyst at SCOPE. “This book offers reasoned evidence to policymakers, communities, and families about how investing in public schools produces better and more equitable outcomes than voucher programs.”

SCOPE’s work addresses the question of how results from public investment approaches compare with those from market-based reforms and provides a timely explanation of alternatives based on real evidence derived from policy analysis and actual outcomes in six different countries. In this project, SCOPE has designed and implemented a set of accessible information resources designed to inform the different constituencies involved in this important debate.

The book, Global Education Reform: How Privatization and Public Investment Influence Education Outcomes, with a set of supporting infographics, videos, and research briefs, provides hard evidence supporting investment in pubic schools. Researchers thoroughly investigated the results of experiments with education in Chile, Sweden, and the U.S. and compared their educational outcomes with those of nearby countries with similar economic and social conditions: Cuba, Finland, and Canada (Ontario). At the national levels in Sweden, the U.S., and Chile, market, charter, or voucher systems are associated with greater disparities and lower student outcomes on international tests.

SCOPE’s project combined in-depth analysis of the different ends of an ideological spectrum – from market-based experiments to strong state investments in public education. Written by education researchers, including Linda Darling-Hammond, Michael Fullan, Pasi Sahlberg, Martin Carnoy, and others, the authors present long-term policy analyses based on primary and secondary research on the implementation and results of these different approaches.

To best support an open debate on the issue of school reform, SCOPE has created the following set of free information resources:

Privatization or Public Investment in Education is a free SCOPE research and policy brief summarizing the findings in the book.
Six Countries. Two Educational Strategies. One Consistent Conclusion is a free infographic presenting an accessible and concise summary of the differences in approaches and outcomes – privatization versus public investment in education.
Our Kids, Our Future: Privatization and Public Investment in Education, a 3-minute video providing an overview of the differences between experimental privatization models and public investment in equitable education systems.
How Privatization and Public Investment Influence Education: A Look at the Research, a more detailed 12-minute video explaining the differences between experimental privatization models and public investment in equitable education systems.
Educational Inequities in the New Orleans Charter School System is a free infographic from SCOPE and the Schott Foundation that explains the impact on students and schools of New Orleans becoming a predominantly charter district after Hurricane Katrina.

The Editors

Frank Adamson, PhD, is a Senior Policy and Research Analyst at the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education.
Björn Åstrand, PhD, is a Senior Lecturer and Dean at Karlstad University in Sweden.
Linda Darling-Hammond, EdD, is the Charles E. Ducommun Professor of Education at Stanford University, the author of over 300 publications, and a former president of the American Educational Research Association.
About SCOPE
The Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education (SCOPE) fosters research, policy, and practice to advance high-quality, equitable education systems in the United States and internationally.

These resources can be downloaded or viewed at the SCOPE Global Education Reform web page.usa-flag-wallpaper-01

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VIDEO: Cafeteria brawl breaks out at PGCPS Central High School in Md.

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– A brutal fight at a high school in Prince George’s County put three students in the hospital on Friday.

The lunch room brawl at Central High School was caught on camera and shows a large number of students attacking each other as three adults try to break it up.

A spokesperson for Prince George’s County Public Schools said a group of African-American students assaulted a group of Hispanic students.

Spokesperson Raven Hill told FOX 5 that the principal is working with the school district’s diversity officer to bring students together and “developing a plan of action that addresses students and parents’ safety concerns and encourages students to celebrate cultural differences in the wake of this incident.”

Hill said all students were part of an assembly Monday in response to what happened and that the three students hospitalized have now been released.

Prince George’s County police said the school resource officer called for backup after the fight started and there were no arrests.

The school district said students were punished according to school guidelines.

FOX 5 spoke to two students who said they heard at the assembly that the aggressors in the fight have been expelled. They also said they don’t think there is a racial divide at their school and they believe there were other issues that prompted the fight.

Click here >> to see the VIDEO

via >>>> Fox5DC

The big problem with early childhood education

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In this Washington post, which appeared on Valerie Strauss’s “Answer Sheet” blog, Nancy Carlsson-Paige explains that the biggest problem in early childhood education today is the erosion of time for play.

Carlsson-Paige is an emeritus professor at Lesley College, where she taught teachers of early childhood. She explains in this post that the changes in the recent past have damaged children and their classrooms.

She said, in a recent speech:

For the last 15 years or so, our education system has been dominated by standards and tests, by the gathering of endless amounts of data collected to prove that teachers are doing their job and kids are learning. But these hyper requirements have oppressed teachers and drained the creativity and joy from learning for students. Unfortunately, this misguided approach to education has now reached down to our youngest children.

In kindergartens and pre-K classrooms around the country we’ve seen a dramatic decrease in play. There are fewer activity centers in classrooms and much less child choice, as well as less arts and music. At the same time, teacher directed instruction has greatly increased, along with more scripted curriculum and paper and pencil tasks.

Play is very important in child development, she says:

Children all over the world play. They all know how to play, and no one has to teach them how. Any time we see a human activity that is wired into the brain and accomplished by all children worldwide, we know it is critical to human development.

So much is learned through play in the early years that play has been called the engine of development. Children learn concepts through play; they learn to cope and make sense of life experiences; and, they develop critical human capacities such as problem solving, imagination, self regulation and original thinking.

She notes that early childhood educators were never at the table when government officials, think tanks, testing companies, and standards writers decided that play didn’t matter. It does matter, and strangely enough, we need to fight to defend the right of children to play.

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Booker, Menendez call for FTC investigation of turf company

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Sens. Bob Menendez and Cory Booker are calling on the Federal Trade Commission to open a full, nationwide investigation into alleged fraud by the leading maker of artificial sports fields, FieldTurf. (The Star-Ledger)

Two United States senators have asked the Federal Trade Commission to open a full, nationwide investigation into whether the leading maker of artificial sports fields, FieldTurf, defrauded taxpayers across the country.

In a letter sent Sunday to the commission’s chairwoman, and obtained by NJ Advance Media, Sens. Cory Booker and Robert Menendez (both D-New Jersey) said the government must be “vigilant against deception and misuse of taxpayer dollars.”

The senators cited the news organization’s recent special report that detailed how FieldTurf made millions selling a high-end brand of turf, known as Duraspine, to towns and schools for years after executives became aware it was falling apart.

Many of the fields have since failed and been replaced.

“Official court records and findings published by New Jersey Advance Media indicate that FieldTurf may have engaged in unfair and deceptive trade practices in violation of federal law in their marketing and sale of the now-discontinued Duraspine turf,” the senators wrote to the commission’s chairwoman, Edith Ramirez.

They added, “We respectfully request a full investigation of this matter and urge the FTC to take any appropriate actions necessary.”

For years, top turf company made millions selling faulty fields to taxpayers

For years, top turf company made millions selling faulty fields to taxpayers

Insider documents reveal nation’s top turf company, FieldTurf, sold high-end sports fields to towns and schools across N.J. and U.S. after knowing they might fall apart.

A federal investigation would dramatically widen the scope of inquiries already facing the company, which include preliminary reviews by the attorneys general in New York and New Jersey, as well as a planned hearing by the New Jersey Legislature.

Last week, the Newark school system filed the first class-action lawsuit in the U.S. over Duraspine’s failures, accusing the company of defrauding the public by failing to disclose a pattern of problems with the turf, and failing to change sales pitches.

FieldTurf also faces lawsuits in California and Texas alleging fraud.

Company officials have said they stand by their products and customers, and will cooperate with any government inquiry. But they strongly deny allegations of fraud and deception, and have said the facts will show their customers were well-served.

The officials maintain Duraspine’s problems did not affect player safety.

Booker, who is leading the effort and sits on the Senate subcommittee for consumer affairs, and Menendez said the FTC’s investigation should cover all 1,428 U.S. sales of Duraspine from when the turf made its debut in 2005 until it was discontinued in 2012.

“Given the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) mandate to protect consumers from unfair and deceptive advertising practices, it is imperative that the commission thoroughly investigate FieldTurf’s sales and marketing of their Duraspine product,” the senators said in the letter.

For most of the eight years Duraspine was sold, company records show, Montreal-based FieldTurf — a division of French flooring maker Tarkett, a publicly traded company — touted its revolutionary qualities, including “unmatched durability” and far greater resistance to ultraviolet light and foot traffic, the two main enemies of any artificial sports field.

Though it cost more than anything else on the market — about $1 per square foot extra, or about $85,000 for an average field — FieldTurf told customers Duraspine would pay off in the long run because it would outlast other turf products, including those of competitors, and even its own previous generation technology.

Soon after sales began, however, key FieldTurf executives became aware Duraspine was cracking, splitting and breaking apart after only a few years of use, records show, far sooner than the decade or more customers were told it would last in advertising. Despite growing signs of a major problem, sales continued across the country, and the company never changed its sales pitches for Duraspine.

All told, FieldTurf earned an estimated $570 million in revenue from the turf, most of which came from taxpayers through towns and school districts.

The company contends it was the victim of a bait-and-switch by its supplier, which changed the chemical formulation of Duraspine, making it more susceptible to ultraviolet radiation. The supplier has denied the allegations.

As part of its investigation, NJ Advance Media contacted 15 experienced consumer attorneys in the six states with the most Duraspine fields. All 15 of those attorneys said FieldTurf likely violated laws against false or misleading advertising.

Richard Newman, an advertising lawyer in New York City with more than 15 years of experience, said the FTC would look to determine if the company’s marketing and advertising contained statements, or omitted information, that likely misled customers, or that a reasonable customer would want to know before a purchase.

Newman said a review would include not only FieldTurf’s written materials, but also the “overall net impression” of what it conveyed to its customers.

“To the extent that Duraspine’s performance standards were inconsistent with express and implied marketing claims made to consumers, the intentional or reckless failure to clearly, conspicuously and prominently disclose the product’s alleged susceptibility to cracking, splitting and breaking apart could materially impact the direction of an FTC investigation or enforcement action,” he said.

Newman said potential penalties for those who engage in deceptive advertising could include civil penalties and consumer restitution.

https://embed.readymag.com/v2/658706/?domain=http%3A%2F%2Ffieldturf.nj.com

Christopher Baxter may be reached at cbaxter@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cbaxter1. Find NJ.com on Facebook.

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PGCPS system looks for answers to Mt. Rainier enrollment woes

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Thomas Stone Elementary is nearly 200 students over capacity. The school is slotted to hold 574 students, but currently enrolls 746. That puts the elementary school at nearly 130 percent utilization.

MOUNT RAINIER – A major problem faces one small city in Prince George’s County as it tries to tackle the tale of two elementary schools.

Mount Rainier, in Northern Prince George’s County, is in the middle of a problem that is not uncommon for the northern area: overcrowding. However, while one elementary school, Thomas Stone Elementary, struggles with finding room to place more students, across town Mount Rainier Elementary is dealing with an issue that is quite the opposite. Mount Rainier Elementary is in the midst of an enrollment decline.

According to number provided by the school system, Thomas Stone Elementary is nearly 200 students over capacity. The school is slotted to hold 574 students, but currently enrolls 746. That puts the elementary school at nearly 130 percent utilization. In contrast, Mount Rainier Elementary can hold 406 students but currently has 315 students, making the school 78 percent utilized.

Rhianna McCarter, a pupil accounting and school boundaries staffer, spoke with a group of about 30 parents with the help of translator to inform the families of both elementary schools about the options Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) has to balance enrollment in the area.

“The last time (Mount Rainier Elementary) had a boundary change was in 2003 and that was when Cottage City was reassigned to Rodgers Heights (Elementary). Thomas Stone in 2006 had a boundary change,” McCarter said.

Elizabeth Chaisson, a planner with PGCPS, said part of the reason for the urgent need to address the overcrowding issue is the lack of boundary changes over the past several years. She said PGCPS has hesitated to make changes because residents and political leaders alike recoil at the mention of boundary changes.

“People get very upset. They feel, ‘I moved to this neighborhood. This is my school. Don’t change it,’” Chaisson said. “The bottom line is we’re here tonight to talk about boundaries and people don’t like boundary changes, so we’re here to get your feedback about what the best change is for your community.”

The school system has slotted Thomas Stone for renovation in phase two of its 20-year capital improvements plan, but that is approximately six years away from initial discussions of funding, and both Chaisson and McCarter said a solution is needed in the meantime.

Previously PGCPS held a meeting on several different enrollment issues in the northern area of the county at Bladensburg High School on Oct. 28. Approximately five residents from Mount Rainier attended that meeting and requested a follow up.

As a possible interim measure, McCarter said, PGCPS has opened up the possibility of families volunteering to transfer from Thomas Stone to Mount Rainier, though it has not been effective.

“As we look toward possible solutions, one of them is the idea of getting students to volunteer to transfer,” she said. “Right now there is fewer than 20 students that have taken advantage of that opportunity. So, that hasn’t really been an effective solution so far.”

However, McCarter said the school system is currently looking at three different options to solve the enrollment issues at the two schools, but also said PGCPS is open to, and really wants input and ideas from the community.

The three ideas presented to those gathered all dealt with ways to increase numbers at Mount Rainier and decrease those at Thomas Stone and include: 1. creating a major boundary change to reroute the eastern-most portion of the city (the Kaywood Gardens Apartments and surrounding areas), areas of Brentwood essentially between the midsection of the town and Route 1 and all of North Brentwood to Mount Rainier Elementary, and moving all sixth grade students to their boundary middle school, 2. moving pre-k and Early Start classes to Mount Rainier, or 3. making a minor boundary adjustment to reroute Kaywood Gardens to Mount Rainer, which McCarter said would have “no material impact on enrollment at either school.”

All of the homes in Mount Rainier, Brentwood and North Brentwood are within the “walk zone” for Mount Rainier Elementary, meaning they are within 1.5 miles and transportation would not be provided for the students to get to school.

At the end of the meeting, parents and community members were given a feedback sheet to rank the three options and provide their ideas for more options. Several residents asked for another follow-up meeting held at Mount Rainier Elementary.

McCarter said PGCPS would try to schedule another meeting before Kevin Maxwell, chief executive officer of PGCPS, presents his recommendation to the school board on Jan. 19. A public hearing for the changes is anticipated on Feb. 2, 2017.

via prince George’s county sentinel

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Mount Rainier Elementary can hold 406 students but currently has 315 students, making the school 78 percent utilized. The school is less than a mile from Thomas Stone Elementary.

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