Friday, December 30, 2016

Montgomery County proposes giving low-income students priority for programs


https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/to-increase-diversity-a-school-district-wants-to-give-preference-based-on-economic-status/2016/12/25/433e5290-c2ff-11e6-9a51-cd56ea1c2bb7_story.html?utm_term=.2db096882eb2

Screens and Kids: Comments by Cindy Eckard Classroom Computer Safety...@screensandkids

Screens and Kids: Comments by Cindy Eckard Classroom Computer Safety...: Comments by Cindy Eckard Classroom Computer Safety Press Conference Friday, December 23, 2016

I worked for decades in high tech communications, so I've long been aware of the dangers of screen time. When I learned that my child would have to use a laptop for school, I assumed there were already safety regulations in place. I was shocked to learn that Maryland students have none, even though OSHA has protected workers from the same dangers since the 1990s.

There is nothing to prevent our kids from being strapped to a computer all day long at school, and suffering from a variety of health issues because of it.

Medical researchers are pointing to an array of serious health issues that threaten children who are using digital devices. What's important to understand is that children are still developing, so they react differently than adults do, and in some cases, suffer more permanent damage becasue of screen time. For instance, the pigment in an adult eye acts a little bit like sunglasses, so adult eyes have more protection from the screen's damaging blue light. A child's eye hasn't developed that pigment yet, so that blue light is going straight to his retina. Over time, this can blind a child. And because the schools are demanding ever more screen time, this is a serious public health threat. But it's just one of the dangers our kids now face at school. Myopia is epidemic in our country and growing. The USC Eye Institute knows why: screen time. Serious myopia brings more risks later in life: cataracts, glaucoma and detched retinas. The screens' blue light also suppresses melatonin, a hormone that promotes sleep. When the kids have to do homework on these devices, they have trouble falling asleep. Kids act differently when they're tired, according to the Sleep Foundation, who reports that children get wound up and over-active instead of sluggish. As a result, many are misdiagnosed with ADHD, when the children were simply exhausted. Obesity is also linked to sleeplessness, and with obesity, comes another host of concerns, like diabetes. And increasingly, scientists are observing psychological problems emerging from daily device use among children: addiction, depression and anxiety are on the rise. Families are being torn apart, and lives are being ruined by the dependence these children are developing on their virtual world. A world that the schools are encouraging more and more each day, as lesson plans all move to the screen. How much screen time is appropriate? I have no idea. No one does right now. That's why we need the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to determine safe thresholds for each stage of development for our children. These are serious health threats to our sons and daughters. Parents are demanding that their children are taken out of harm's way, and protected from the known and avoidable risks Maryland students now face in school. I've also asked the American Academy of Pediatrics lead researcher to look into this issue, since their most recent set of guidelines failed to mention the use of screens for school work. She responded: "Our current guidelines are focused on the media environment at home, and parents’ role in this environment as media role models and mentors... our AAP guidelines are quite explicit in focusing on media use for entertainment (not for educational purposes) at home. " So please know that those new American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines have nothing to do with the situation in our schools. Delegate Steve Arentz is my hero and should be yours too. He is taking this issue on, and will sponsor the legislation in the upcoming General Assembly session that will direct the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to do its job and protect Maryland's most vulnerable citizens from being hurt by their school equipment. We must teach our children how to compete in an electronic world, without harming them in the process. Legislative updates and research documents will be posted at www.screensandkids.us and I hope you'll follow this issue on Twitter @screensandkids.

WBAL: Video: Paula Poundstone pushes for screen safety in Md. schools

http://www.wbaltv.com/article/video-paula-poundstone-pushes-for-screen-safety-in-md-schools/8533248


Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Paula Poundstone will hold a press conference Friday, December 23rd to support Maryland legislation that will create classroom computer safety regulations @screensandkids

MD screen safety legislation press conference

ANNAPOLIS, MARYLAND Award-winning comedian, author, actress and activist Paula Poundstone will hold a press conference at Rams Head On Stage in Annapolis at 1:30 on Friday, December 23rd to express her support for Maryland legislation that will create classroom computer safety regulations.  Ms. Poundstone is active in her Santa Monica, California community, advocating for digital device limits in public school classrooms.

Delegate Steve Arentz (R-Dist. 36) will sponsor the legislation in the upcoming General Assembly session. The bill will direct state agencies to develop medically sound classroom guidelines to protect students from the documented health risks posed by daily use of digital devices: increased myopia, retinal damage, digital eye strain, macular degeneration, sleeplessness, obesity, addiction, anxiety and depression.
Ms. Poundstone, a mother of three, will share her perspective on the health issues caused by screen time and urge Maryland lawmakers to pass legislation in the upcoming session that will set an example for the rest of the country. The Maryland screen safety legislation has just received national attention in an article published by the New York Post on Sunday, December 18th:

The New York Post, Sunday, December 18, 2016

"But not all parents are drinking the screens-are-wonderful Kool-Aid — some are fighting back.

Cindy Eckard, a Maryland mother of two, is launching a grass-roots campaign to create legislation to limit screen time in schools and is testifying in front of a state Senate subcommittee hearing this month.

“I was shocked to learn that the Maryland State Department of Education had no medically sound health guidelines in place before they put so many of our children in front of a computer every day . . . The schools keep encouraging more screen time in the classroom without any regard for our children’s well-being,” Eckard told me. “Our children are owed a safe classroom environment, and right now they’re not getting one.” "


Cindy Eckard has two children who attend Maryland public schools. She has written Op Eds for both the Baltimore Sun, and the Washington Post advocating for the protection of Maryland students in the classroom. Ms Eckard will announce a new blog that will provide the public with detailed peer-reviewed medical research to support the need for medical oversight and statewide classroom screen safety regulations.

The press conference will be held in the On Stage room at Rams Head Tavern, located at 33 West Street in Annapolis. For further information, contact Cindy Eckard at screensandkids@gmail.com PLEASE NOTE: The event will be live streamed on Periscope. Follow @screensandkids 

# # #

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

FY 18 County Executive Budget Forums


Montgomery County Executive Leggett is holding five budget forums to seek input from residents about Fiscal Year 2018 (FY18) Operating Budget priorities.   All forums will begin at 7:00 pm.
 
-  Monday, January 9 at the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center, 4805 Edgemoor Lane, Bethesda.
-  Wednesday, January 11, Eastern Montgomery Regional Services Center, 3300 Briggs Chaney Road, Silver Spring
-  Wednesday, January 18, Mid-County Community Recreation Center, 2004 Queensguard Road, Silver Spring
-  Wednesday, January 25, Silver Spring Civic Building, One Veterans Place, Silver Spring
-  Monday, January 30, BlackRock Center for the Arts, 12901 Town Commons Drive, Germantown
The County Executive will announce his Recommended FY18 Operating Budget on March 15. The County Council approves the operating budget at the end of May.
Sign language interpreter services will be provided only upon request with notice as far in advance as possible, but no less than 72 hours prior to the event. If these or other services or aids are needed to participate in this activity, call 240-777-6507, TTY 240-773-3556 or email a request to Karen.falcon@montgomerycountymd.gov

Friday, December 23, 2016

"State audit revealed critical cybersecurity weaknesses in Montgomery County Public Schools' computer network"

Cybersecurity? Riemer promised in 2010 to make MoCo a "cybersecurity hub" on the east coast. Four years later, it was exposed that the county government was running on Windows 2000, perhaps the most insecure platform in the world. Six years later, a State audit revealed critical cybersecurity weaknesses in Montgomery County Public Schools' computer network. These flaws put private student information a few clicks away for hackers, and gave access to the entire MCPS network, including log-in passwords for personnel. Yikes.
Robert Dyer @ Bethesda Row: Barwood files for bankruptcy after MoCo Council ch...: "If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. If it stops moving, subsidize it." - Ronald Reagan SPECIAL REPORT: A...

Md. U.S. attorney’s office recovers nearly $47 million in FY16, DOJ says #NotFrosh #NotDefectivePlasticGrass

The Maryland U.S. attorney’s office collected nearly $47 million in criminal and civil recoveries in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, the federal Justice Department reported Thursday.

Of that figure, more than $35 million came via civil actions, including money that had been lost to the U.S. government through fraud or other misconduct or by violations of federal health, safety, civil rights or environmental laws, the department stated.

These civil cases included investigations against PNC Bank, Foundation Health Service Inc., Arkema Inc. and Westvaco. The U.S attorney’s office also collected civil penalties under the federal Controlled Substances Act from investigations of CVS Pharmacy Inc., Value Drug Inc. and Drug City Pharmacy Inc., the department reported.

As for criminal recoveries, the Maryland U.S. attorney’s office collected $11.5 million through restitution, criminal fines and felony assessments.
In all, the U.S. attorney’s offices nationwide recovered more than $15.3 billion in fiscal 2016...

 http://thedailyrecord.com/2016/12/15/md-u-s-attorneys-office-recovers-nearly-47-million-in-fy16-doj-says/

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Sag Harbor Voters Mow Down Artificial Turf Plan #NotMCPS #NotMoCoParents #MDLovesDefectivePlasticGrass

Plans for an artificial turf field at Pierson Middle-High School came to a screeching halt Wednesday night, with Sag Harbor School District residents turning out en masse, voting 1,016 to 135 against a proposal that would allow the board of education to take cash from its Capital Reserve Fund to increase monies approved in 2013 for the field.
The $365,000 — which would not have had a tax impact on residents — was necessary in order for the district to move forward with the project. Since the 2013 vote, which was approved by taxpayers, 585-507, the cost of constructing the field increased significantly. Bids opened last winter came in between $500,000 and $700,000 over budget. If approved Wednesday, the financing would have supplemented the $1.62 million originally approved by voters, although it would have been used for a scaled back version of the 2013 plan.
A group of parents — led by board member Susan Lamontagne — began a grassroots effort in 2012, and re-invigorated that movement last February, in an effort to push the district away from synthetic turf and towards a natural grass or natural sod option for the field, citing health and safety concerns surrounding the crumb rubber — or recycled tire rubber — infill. A federal study was launched last winter by the Environmental Protection Agency, the Consumer Product Safety Commission and the Centers for Disease Control to look into health and environmental safety concerns raised about turf fields and playgrounds made with recycled tires. A draft of that report is expected by the end of the year.
Two weeks ago, the Sag Harbor Elementary School PTA and the Pierson Middle High School PTSA voted to oppose the plan as well. At a second public session, hosted by the district last week, students were both supportive and opposed to the artificial turf. Sophomore Paige Schaefer, who plays field hockey and softball, presented the board with a petition boasting 100 student signatures supportive of the plan...

 http://sagharboronline.com/sag-harbor-voters-mow-artificial-turf-plan/

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Virgin Group invests in Auticon to help employ more adults with autism in the UK

London, 20 October 2016 – Following Auticon’s recent launch in the UK, Auticon Group CEO Kurt Schöffer is delighted to announce Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group and UK charity Esmée Fairbairn Foundation as new investors in Auticon.
The investment will help enable Auticon, which exclusively hires IT consultants on the autism spectrum, to accelerate its growth in the UK IT market. Originally founded in Germany in 2011, Auticon only launched its UK office in spring 2016, and is already working with UK companies on IT projects with its newly recruited consultants.
The investment by Sir Richard Branson and Virgin Group also offers Auticon a chance to promote social change in attitudes towards autism and employment. Auticon was founded on the knowledge that autistic adults often have extraordinary cognitive abilities, yet many find it difficult to secure or maintain mainstream employment...

http://auticon.co.uk/blog/virgin/

Monday, December 19, 2016

STOP Proposed Changes to Maryland's Community Pathways Waiver!

The Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) has proposed changes to the Community Pathways waiver which limit options and flexibility of services provided to our most vulnerable population, resulting in potential loss of existing programs and services.

(1) Eliminate access for disabled children under age 21 to critical disability services;
(2) Prevent individuals who receive day habilitation from opportunities to work or receive job training;
(3) Prevent individuals in Community Development services to receive sustained therapeutic activities, instructional classes, or job skills in ANY facility operated by a service provider;
(4) Limit essential behavioral support services for severely impacted persons with disabilities to an insufficient few hours per year, as a stand-alone service requiring a separate license; and
(5) Impose complex and burdensome billing procedures increasing the risk of errors and repayment claims.

A dedicated group of parents in the County provided DDA with specific recommendations and suggestions for the draft amendment #2, as solicited by DDA itself. These parents have reached out to DDA in person and in writing. However, to date no recommendations have been accepted by DDA. As currently proposed, amendment #2 will mean a more restricted day, with less choice of activities each day, for persons with disabilities in Maryland.

We are asking that DDA modify the draft amendment #2 to ensure:

(a) Services for children under 21 through the Community Pathways waiver to continue.
(b) A model of Adult Day services which allows people to choose a mix of varying hours of paid and/or volunteer work; therapeutic and/or instructional classes; and recreation, fitness, and social activities in locations of their choice.
(c) Funding for Adult Day services sufficient to provide enough staff support, transportation, activity expenses and facility costs.
(d) Critical behavioral supports to be integrated with other services, provided by service providers, and adequate to meet the urgent needs of people with intensive challenging behaviors.
(e) Documentation and billing procedures designed to ensure accuracy and efficiency (i.e., daily billing for a single service category).

The current DDA-proposed amendment #2 DOES NOT accomplish these objectives. The DDA needs to address the deficiencies in their draft; listen to the public comments which DDA itself solicited; and modify their proposal to better serve our most vulnerable Marylanders. Persons with developmental disabilities deserve to move forward not backwards.

Please CLICK HERE TO SIGN THE PETITION, which will be delivered to:
Bernard A. Simons
Maryland Developmental Disabilities Administration

College Board faces rocky path after CEO pushes new vision for SAT

David Coleman spearheaded a sweeping redesign of America's oldest college entrance exam. His plan to act fast – and tie the test to the controversial Common Core - stirred up internal resistance and created new problems.

NEW YORK - Shortly after taking over the College Board in 2012, new CEO David Coleman circulated an internal memo laying out what he called a “beautiful vision.”
It was his 7,800-word plan for transforming the organization’s signature product, the SAT college entrance exam. The path Coleman laid out was detailed, bold and idealistic - a reflection of his personality, say those who know him.
Literary passages for the new SAT should be “memorable and often beautiful,” he wrote, and students should be able to take the test by computer.
Finishing the redesign quickly was essential. If the overhaul were ready by March 2015, he wrote in a later email to senior employees, then the New York-based College Board could win new business and counter the most popular college entrance exam in America, the ACT.
Perhaps the biggest change was the new test’s focus on the Common Core, the controversial set of learning standards that Coleman himself helped create. The new SAT, he wrote, would “show a striking alignment” to the standards, which set expectations for what American students from kindergarten through high school should learn to prepare for college or a career. The standards have been fully adopted by 42 states and the District of Columbia - and are changing how and what millions of children are taught...

http://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/college-sat-coleman/

Friday, December 16, 2016

New federal class-action suit claims FieldTurf stonewalled N.J. customer #MDLovesDefectivePlasticGrass

The drumbeat of legal action against the nation's leading maker of artificial sports fields intensified this week when a national class-action lawsuit landed in New Jersey.
The suit, filed on behalf of Carteret, claims FieldTurf sold the borough fields that failed to meet exaggerated promises and then stonewalled officials' complaints until warranties expired.
The allegations made by Carteret directly refute FieldTurf's assertions that premature deterioration with a brand of high-end turf known as Duraspine had not affected New Jersey customers.
The national complaint was filed late Wednesday in U.S. District Court in New Jersey, 10 days after NJ Advance Media published an investigation revealing FieldTurf sold Duraspine for years after executives knew it was falling apart. Last week, the Newark school system filed the first class-action lawsuit against the company in state Superior Court in Essex County, and state authorities in New Jersey and New York also began examining the business practices of the company...

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2016/12/nj_borough_files_federal_class-action_suit_against.html

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

2 US Senators call for FTC to Hold FieldTurf Accountable #notMD #notMikulski #notCardin #notFrosh

Booker, Menendez say FTC must hold top U.S. turf company accountable
In a letter sent Sunday to the Federal Trade 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."
Read the letter and their call for action on NJ.com.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

MCPS Superintendent wants $62.4 million Increase in MCPS Operating Budget

MCPS Superintendent Advances .5 Billion Budget Aimed at Racial, Economic Disparities: Smith says he’s looking to move more students to a ‘high level of learning’

Proposed School Calendar Would Shorten Spring Break if Snows Force Class Cancellations

Proposed School Calendar Would Shorten Spring Break if Snows Force Class Cancellations: Superintendent Jack Smith to present his drafted schedule to school board Tuesday

Should Ice Cream be Available 5 Days a Week in MCPS Elementary Schools?

A parent had not realized that MCPS allows ice cream to be served daily in the lunchroom.  The parent set up an online poll on this topic. 

How many days/week do you think it's appropriate for RCES to serve ice cream to the kids at lunch?  Click link below to vote.  Thank you!

https://fans.vote/vote/ACnkNKPeCl4/rces-capacity-discussion/how-many-days-week-do-you-think-it-s-appropriate-for-rces-to-serve-icecream-to-the-kids-at-lunch 

#MCPS Legal Fees Continue to Balloon Out of Control

Remember when Montgomery County Public Schools hired a General Counsel? Taxpayers obviously assumed that the new General Counsel would take over some of the legal work in-house, promoting cost efficiencies. Special education advocates were hopeful that a new era of focusing on what is best for special education students and their families would begin, and that the money bleeding out to pay for outside special education counsel could instead be spent on actual special education services for children.

Nope.

Non-special Education Legal Expenses

The total charges for non-special education legal expenses in September 2016 were $152,305.
The year-to-date total of $465,675 is $164,776 (54.8 percent) more than the same period
in the previous year. The non-Capital Improvements Program year-to-date portion totals
$441,947. This is $219,097 (98.3 percent) more than the same period in the previous year.

Special Education Legal Expenses

Special education legal fees for outside counsel for September 2016 totaled $2,980, all of which
were for Jeffery A. Krew. The year-to-date total of $33,698 is $6,608 (24.4 percent) more than
the same period in the previous year.



Monday, December 12, 2016

Assault at Whitman HS

Robert Dyer @ Bethesda Row: Assault at Whitman HS, cars stolen from Taylor St....: Here's a roundup of crimes reported across Bethesda on December 8, according to crime data: Drug arrest. Old Georgetown Road at Wood...

Wed 12/14: Superintendent Jack Smith to Speak at Taxpayers' League

Meeting Notice       
                         Wednesday, December 14, 2016
   6:00 - 7:30 pm
             1st Floor Meeting Room
         Rockville Public Library
21 Maryland Avenue
Rockville, MD 20850
        PLEASE NOTE NEW TIME AND VENUE

             Free and open to the public
                                                                       
Topic:   " The FY 2018 Proposed Budget for the Montgomery County Public Schools"

Speaker:  Dr. Jack Smith, Superintendent, Montgomery County Public Schools

The following questions have been sent to Dr. Smith in advance of the meeting

1.  What are the costs related to the top three academic strategies - Achievement Gap, 21st Century Education and Special Education for FY 2018.  What percentage of increased spending is for these 3 strategies? 

2.  Data from prior superintendents and reports by the Council's Office of Legislative Oversight (OLO) show that MCPS has expended an additional $2,000 per student annually in "targeted" elementary schools to reduce class size and provide supports to low-income learners.  However the achievement gap by student race, ethnicity and income continues to persist and has widened on several measures of college readiness, such as SAT and ACT performance.   How many schools did not meet district-wide performance targets?  Have you set improvement goals for these schools for FY 2018?  As you have highlighted narrowing the achievement gap as a major goal, would you consider sponsoring an independent review by outside specialists of gap closing strategies to determine which approaches are cost-effective - with a report to the public?

3.  Will you consider charter schools as a means of closing the achievement gap?  A review of Baltimore schools in Freddy Gray’s Sandtown neighborhood showed a charter school (Empowerment Academy) not only out-performed his public school (New Song), but out-performed two elementary (Greencastle and Strathmore) and two middle schools with high FARMS rates in Montgomery County - Benjamin Bannecker and Argyle. (see 5/18/15 study posted on MCTL web site).

4.  Will you use Department of Education standards to decide if there is reasonable evidence to deploy a program countywide.  For instance have the Choice Program and the Middle School Magnet Consortium met their performance goals?  If yes, will they be expanded? Will you reprogram funds if goals for these and other programs are are not reached? 


5.  Are performance target improvements planned for special education students in FY 2018 separate from the at risk population at large? How do the marginal costs to achieve these improvements compare to the marginal costs for at risk students in the general student population for the same measures?

6.   Given that the mandated Maintenance of Effort law may not be able to cover both the program needs of our school children and the salaries and benefits of staff which account for 90 percent of the MCPS budget, will you rein in labor contracts so that teacher's salaries and benefits match more reasonably with their counterparts in Howard and Fairfax counties?

7.  How does your FY 2018 budget manage non-instruction overhead ?  Have you considered benchmarking this against other school systems?  For example, the overhead rate at large school districts in California average 32%.  For MCPS it was 45%  in FY 2017.  Lowering this overhead could result in the hiring of thousands more teachers to lower class size and narrow the achievement gap.  Will you use the expertise of the business community to advise on administrative costs?  Will you consider consolidating administrative functions with those of the Montgomery County government.

8.   Language immersion programs are very popular and wildly over-subscribed.  To open the program to a larger school audience, have you considered innovative solutions such as partnering with universities that provide video classroom learning in a wide range of languages.

MCPS high school teacher convicted of ‘up-skirting’ student

BETHESDA — A former Montgomery County teacher has been convicted of sex abuse charges after taking pictures up a student’s skirt with his cellphone.
The Washington Post reports a judge on Tuesday found 38-year-old Todd Michael Scriber of Gaithersburg guilty of two counts of sex abuse of a minor.
Scriber was arrested after a 14-year-old student told investigators that while she was staying after school Oct. 2 to retake a test, she noticed Scriber point a phone under her skirt and take a picture.
Detectives also found several photos of other students on Scriber’s phone that authorities said he had taken without their permission...

http://thedailyrecord.com/2016/12/09/maryland-montgomery-county-upskirt-scriber/

Friday, December 9, 2016

Newark Schools Files Class Action Against FieldTurf #notMaryland #notFrosh

The Newark school system has filed a class-action lawsuit against the nation's leading maker of artificial sports fields, FieldTurf, alleging the company defrauded more than 100 public and private schools and municipalities in the state.
The complaint, filed late Wednesday in state Superior Court in Essex County, capped two days of fast-moving developments following an NJ Advance Media investigation that revealed the company sold high-end turf for years after executives knew it was falling apart.
Lance Kalik -- an attorney with the law firm Riker Danzig, which is representing the schools -- said the news organization's investigation "contained allegations and facts that are quite disturbing."
"If true, it means that many public bodies, not just the state-operated district, but others as well, as well as some private schools, have been sold a product that was based on potentially false and misleading marketing and sales practices," Kalik said....

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2016/12/newark_schools_file_class-action_lawsuit_against_f.html#incart_river_home

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Former B-CC High School Teacher Convicted of Two Counts of Child Sex Abuse

Former B-CC High School Teacher Convicted of Two Counts of Child Sex Abuse: Teacher took surreptitious photos of his students

WJLA: MCPS math teacher/coach accused of buying bottles of liquor for female student

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (ABC7) – An MCPS teacher is facing criminal charges on accusations of buying whiskey and other types of hard liquor for a female student at Albert Einstein High School in Kensington.
Blaise Delizo, 26, of the 700 block of Landis Way in Rockville, is currently facing charges of furnishing alcohol to someone under the age of 21 and contributing to the condition of a child.
According to Montgomery County District Court paperwork, Delizo exchanged personal cell phone numbers with the 17-year-old high school senior who he’d taught during her junior year. On Friday, November 4, Delizo is said to have offered to purchase bottles of booze for the underage girl. The girl replied via text message, saying Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey Whiskey and Hennessy Cognac were her favorite liquors


http://wjla.com/news/local/mcps-math-teacher-accused-of-buying-bottles-of-liquor-for-female-student

10 FieldTurf fields at high schools across Georgia failed. Georgia, athletic directors and coaches saw something strange going on with their FieldTurf artificial football fields.

- All across Georgia, athletic directors and coaches saw something strange going on with their FieldTurf artificial football fields.

“It would be like you walked through freshly mowed lawns. You’d have fibers all over you shoes,” says Carrollton High School Athletic Director David Brooks.



http://www.fox5atlanta.com/news/i-team/218016511-story

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Letter: Don’t let children take cellphones to school

I am outraged that Montgomery County Public Schools is even considering changing its cellphone policy to allow elementary school children to carry them to school and use them on the bus. Young students can’t bring stuffed animals or Pokémon trading cards, but they can bring cellphones, some worth hundreds of dollars?

I don’t think the superintendent understands the reality of children bringing phones to school. Middle school students are watching pornography on their phones. Children are cyberbullying each other via text. And some children have an application installed on their phones to get around a school’s “secure” server. The school board should do its homework.

How would allowing elementary school children to bring cellphones to school lower costs, close the achievement gap or help kids focus? The teachers would have one more distraction to deal with. Who asked for this?

I want proof that this is a good idea before it is implemented.
I have been serving my school as a PTA member, board member and volunteer for years. I am discouraged that MCPS does not get the message that devices at school are a social and potential health problem, not to mention a privilege that not all can afford.
I urge MCPS leadership to include parents in decisions that so plainly involve us.

Lisa Cline, Gaithersburg

 https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/dont-let-children-take-cellphones-to-school/2016/12/01/9b35e31e-b73d-11e6-939c-91749443c5e5_story.html?utm_term=.c433c6c0a0c3

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Fairfax Parents STOP Cell Tower from being built on Elementary School Playground!

https://www.restonnow.com/2016/11/29/companies-seek-new-crossfield-school-spot-for-cell-phone-tower/

Board of Education REVERSES Ban on cell Towers at Elementary Schools #tricked #vendors1st

Daly Elementary School playground (Red Zone/Title 1)
Remember back in 2012, when the Board of Education instituted a ban on cell towers on elementary school playgrounds? Well, it is 2016, and that ban is over.

Our "new" Board of Education is in place and the "old" Board of Education practices are back in use.

Tomorrow, the Agenda for the Montgomery County Tower Committee shows that the Board of Education is going to permit a LARGER cell tower to be built on to the Daly Elementary School cell tower.

You remember the Daly cell tower? That's the one the PTA and neighbors OPPOSED, but the Board of Education built anyway.

Get ready MCPS elementary schools! This opens up ALL elementary school playgrounds to new cell towers! The 2012 ban on cell towers is gone. Read: MCPS Bans Cell Towers at Elementary Schools: Parents' Coalition of Montgomery County, Maryland

Flashback: Stranger Danger: Cell Towers on School Grounds. But Tomorrow A LARGER Cell Tower Installation will be put on Daly ES Playground!

New members on the Montgomery County Board of Education? But the same old bait and switch is going on with regard to the safety of public school children.

The Daly Elementary School PTA voted NO on a cell tower for the Daly ES playground. But, the Board of Education said take a hike to the PTA and planted a cell tower there anyway.

Tomorrow, the "new" Board of Education will allow LARGE, more powerful cell tower panels to add to the Daly ES cell tower. That allows another set of strangers on this elementary school playground to add to this cell tower. Here is the Montgomery County Tower Committee Agenda for Wednesday, December 7, 2016, where MCPS staff will represent that the Montgomery County Board of Education approves of putting ANOTHER set of cell tower workers on the Daly ES playground.

http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/cable/Resources/Files/Towers/agendas/2016/12-7-16_agenda.pdf

Do Progressive Democrats care about the safety of public school children? The answer to that question is a resounding NO.

Read  Stranger Danger: Cell Towers on School Grounds: Parents' Coalition of Montgomery County, Maryland