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HCPS Board Meeting Highlights

Monday, October 11, 2004

Questions regarding these Board Highlights may be directed to Don Morrison, Director of Public Information, 410-588-5203.

At the business meeting on October 11, 2004 at Aberdeen High School North Building the following actions and discussions took place.

General Public Comments

Kim Grimes, Magnolia Elementary School parent, voiced her dismay regarding the editorial written in The Aegis regarding students attending Magnolia. Leo Bulavko echoed the words of Mrs. Grimes. Keith Goodell, HCEA Representative expressed concern regarding teacher salary and workload. Shirley Clemmons expressed teacher concerns in Harford County. She said teachers have too many duties and find themselves unable to fulfill their responsibilities daily.

Mary Kate Keesling, parent of three children attending the Bel Air schools, said she was concerned about the overcrowding at Bel Air High School and objected to the comments made by Board President Robert B. Thomas, Jr. at a recent Board meeting. She said she is not pleased with the portable buildings at the high school.

Ann Bradford, veteran teacher, expressed concern about the responsibilities placed on special education teachers. She said there is not enough time to do all of the case management paperwork and teach the students.

Delegate Susan McComas spoke about the condition of Bel Air High School. She said dollars are a problem but she is willing to be a resource to get this project under construction. She said all involved need a game plan for either a renovation or a new building. Councilman Bob Cassilly supported the comments made by Delegate McComas.

Old Business

Action Items

Acting on the motion of Board Member Salina M. Pleasant-Grice and the second of Board Member Mark W. Wolkow, the Board unanimously approved items on the Consent Agenda including the Affirmation of Monthly Contract Awards; Minutes from the September 13, 2004 Board Business Meeting and Board of Education Negotiation Teams 2004-2005.

Acting on the motion of Board Member Lee Merrell and the second of Board Member Thomas L. Fidler, Jr. the Board voted unanimously to approve the Revised Drug Dog Detection Policy.

The Board unanimously approved the renaming of the former Aberdeen High School, North Building to the Center for Educational Opportunity.

Acting on the motion of Mr. Wolkow and the second of Mrs. Pleasant-Grice, the Board unanimously approved a capital budget transfer. The $99,658 will be used to purchase a dump truck and additional mowers and tractors.

Acting on the motion of Mr.Wolkow and the second of Mr. Fidler, the Board unanimously voted to approve the recommended FY05 Unrestricted Funds Budget Request. This request is to allocate money in escrow to fund the debt services.

Acting on the motion of Board Member Patrick L. Hess and the second of Mr. Fidler, the Board unanimously approved the transfer of monies between state categories. The action concerned the movement of the positions of Coordinator of Business Partnerships and Supervisor of Grants; and Coordinator of Alternative Education and support staff for Alternative Education from mid-level administration to administrative services in the state accounting system.

New Business

Acting on the motion of Board Vice-President R. Robin Rich and the second of Board Member Lee Merrell, the Board voted unanimously to layover consideration of the renaming of the former Aberdeen High School North Building to its October 11, 2004 meeting at which action would be taken to rename the building.

The Board unanimously approved the appointment of Patti Jo Beard to be Director of the Facilities Management Department. Mrs. Beard had been Acting Director of that department.


Forest Wiest, Supervisor of High School Physical Education and Athletics presented to the Board a proposal to revise the Eligibility Policy. (See the HCPS web site Seeking Public Input for details). The Board voted to lay over consideration for 30 days to allow for public comment.

Patrick Spicer, General Counsel, presented revisions to the Board of Education and Superintendent of Schools sections of the Board Policy Manual. (See the HCPS web site Seeking Public Input for details). The Board will vote on the revisions at the November 22, 2004 meeting. Also presented by Mr. Spicer were two new proposed policies, Video Surveillance and Student Behavior Interventions. The Board will take action at the November 22, 2004 meeting. (See the HCPS web site Seeking Public Input for details.)

Jacqueline C. Haas, Superintendent of Schools, reported that several community members in the Fallston school attendance area supporting the renaming of the Fallston High School Stadium to be named after the fallen hero and recent Fallston graduate, Patrick Adle, killed in Iraq.

Mrs. Haas also commented on the high school assessments. Present eighth graders must pass four high school assessments to get a diploma. This would be the Class of 2009 and each class thereafter. Assessments to be passed include English 10, Government, Biology and Algebra I . A policy recommendation will be forthcoming.


Board Comments

Mr. Wolkow said while he was unable to be present for the Edgewood High School 50 year celebration held on October 8-9, 2004, he had heard comments that it was an excellent celebration. He also expressed his concern regarding comments made by the media about the school system and Magnolia Elementary students. Mr. Wolkow spoke to the urgency for increased teacher pay to retain teachers employed in Harford County.

Mr. Fidler asked that Mr. Thomas be kept in everyone's thoughts during his illness. He also commented on the upcoming groundbreaking ceremony to be held on October 21, 2004 for the new administration building. Mr. Fidler thanked Councilman Cassilly and Delegate McComas for their support of the Bel Air High School project. He commented that Bel Air High School is a project that we have to address.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:48 p.m.

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