School Notes

No School May 18

Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS) will be closed for students on May 18 when the United States will host the Group of Eight (G8) world leaders at Camp David in Thurmont. Sheriff Chuck Jenkins has advised FCPS that he anticipates traffic congestion and the potential for security concerns as participating world leaders, the news media and their staffs travel through the county. The sheriff recommended schools be cancelled for students that day.

The Maryland State Department of Education has granted FCPS a waiver so students do not need to make up the day. Activities such as Advanced Placement testing, athletics, drama productions and proms will go on as scheduled May 18 – 19, while field trips, assemblies and the similar school-day activities will be rescheduled or cancelled. School administrators will notify participating students and families about any modifications regarding scheduled activities.

Urbana Students Score in Countywide Science Fair

Throughout Frederick County, science students presented 120 projects at this year’s middle and high school Science and Engineering Fair on March 24. The entries were judged by more than 50 professionals from the Frederick community.

Of 20 participating high school students, Samuel Pritt, a home-schooled junior, won the grand prize for his first-place Computer Science Engineering project: Geolocation of Photographs by Horizon Matching with Digital Elevation Models. He will represent Frederick County at the 2012 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Pittsburgh, Penn., in May, along with the first runner-up Middletown High School senior Shane Falcinelli.

Urbana senior James Liu won first place in Cellular and Molecular Biology with his experimental design project: Molecular Mechanisms of Authophagy.

Out of the 100 middle school entries, the grand prize went to Urbana 8th grader Josephine Vallejo. Josephine won for first-place Medicine and Health Sciences experimental project: Could Cell Phones Be Dangerous?

Other middle school first-place winners included Urbana seventh grader Johann Miller in Computer Science and Urbana seventh grader Rishub Nahar in Plant Sciences. Second-place middle school winners included Urbana eighth grader Megan Cicerone in Behavioral and Social Sciences and Urbana eighth grader Madison Hively in Energy and Transportation.

Third-place middle school winners included Friends Meeting School eighth grader Nicholas Browning in Engineering.

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

Frederick Classical Charter School Update

According to Sue Middleton, community outreach director for the Frederick Classical Charter School, Frederick Classical Charter School must delay opening until 2013. Middleton said that this is due to a variety of reasons, including that Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS) is concerned about the compressed timeframe for the school to hire staffing. Middleton said the Charter School staff did not share these concerns. She adds that the staff is still hopeful for a 2013 opening.

Centerville’s New Curriculum Specialist

On July 1, Dr. Kimberly Mazaleski begins her new role as elementary science curriculum specialist at Centerville Elementary School. This position is a promotion from her former position as assistant principal at Centerville. 

Mazaleski has had an extensive teaching career, teaching at a number of private schools before joining FCPS in 1997. She’s taught a variety of grade levels at North Frederick, Spring Ridge and Walkersville elementary schools as well as at Ballenger Creek Middle. She was promoted to teacher specialist for elementary mathematics and served in that role for three years, supporting several schools in the county. Mazaleski earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education in 1994 from Towson University, a master’s degree in special education from McDaniel College in 1997 and doctorate of education from Walden University in 2010.

In addition, she has taught classes at Frederick Community College in early childhood special education, child development and behavior, and activities for the school-aged child and is an adjunct instructor in McDaniel College’s graduate and professional studies program. Mazaleski has led numerous school committees and is very involved in the school community.

At a Frederick County Board of Education (BOE) meeting at the end of March, the BOE approved Mazaleski in this new role, effective July 1.

Financial Reporting Awards

On April 2, Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS) announced it had won a second award in this spring for its outstanding financial reporting. This award, the Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting, was given to FCPS from the Association of School Business Officials International (ASBO). FCPS received this recognition due to the school system’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the fiscal year ending 2011. 

“Our dedicated staff works diligently throughout the year and especially after the fiscal year ends to track and accumulate the financial activities into our Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,” stated Leslie Pellegrino, FCPS Fiscal Services executive director. “Our goal is to present FCPS financial information so that all stakeholders can easily review and understand it. These certificates validate that we reached our goal.”

The Washington Post Recognizes FCPS Teachers

This month, two receptions are being held to honor FCPS teachers who were recognized by The Washington Post. Thurmont Primary School principal Debra Myers received the Frederick County Public Schools recipient of a 2012 Distinguished Educational Leadership Award. The Washington Post Educational Leadership Foundation presents these awards annually to honor metropolitan-area principals who go beyond the day-to-day demands of the position to create an exceptional educational environment in their school. The Post will recognize Myers at a reception on May 8.

Myers has been an educator since 1980 and began her career with Frederick County Public Schools at Green Valley Elementary. Myers was nominated by Laura Krauss, the parent of a Thurmont Primary kindergarten student.

Urbana High visual arts teacher Deborah Winkles is the Frederick County recipient of a 2012 Agnes Meyer Outstanding Teacher Award. The Washington Post presents these awards annually to recognize excellence in teaching, encourage creative and quality instruction, and contribute to the improvement of education in the Washington-metropolitan area. The Post will recognize. Winkles at a reception on May 15. To read more about Winkles and her award, see page 5.

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