May 3, 2017
Posted on 05/04/2017

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School Board Meeting May 3, 2017
 

Select this link to view the agenda on the Electronic School Board web page. 

Select this link to view the School Board meeting on PWCS-TV. 

The School Board Approved:

  • The purchase of 15.10 acres of land for the Prince William Parkway Elementary School;
  • The contract award for the site lighting upgrades at Hylton High School to R. E. Lee Electric Company, Inc.;
  • The documents necessary for the construction and/or operation of school additions to Antietam, Lake Ridge, Leesylvania, Minnieville, and Springwoods Elementary Schools, and Stonewall Middle School;
  • The naming of the Gar-Field High School auditorium in honor of John Jenkins, Neabsco District representative to the Board of County Supervisors;
  • The 2017–18 special education annual plan;
  • June as National Caribbean American Heritage Month;
  • May 15–June 15 as National Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month;
  • The payrolls for March;
  • The School Board meeting minutes for April 19; and
  • The cooperative agreement revised to specify that high schools schedule indoor/outdoor athletics and the Department of Parks and Recreation schedules indoor/outdoor athletics at elementary and middle schools.

Policies and Regulations:

Policy 664, “Guidelines for Parental Instruction Assistance,” first reading (no action is required on first readings). 

Citizens’ Comment Time:

  • Lake Ridge and Woodbridge Middle School boundaries;
  • Forest Park High School annual walk for suicide prevention;
  • School budget and Woodbridge High School; and
  • The expansion/addition of three elementary schools.

Presentations and discussion on the following topics:

  • The Woodbridge High School cast of the Wiz gave a short performance and sang the song “A Brand New Day.”
  • The employee Compensation Study.
  • The student housing and middle school attendance area recommendations for Lake Ridge and Woobridge Middle Schools.
  • The third quarter budget review.

Superintendent’s Time:

Dr. Steven L. Walts, Superintendent of Schools, made the following comments:

  • Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos visited Ashland Elementary School because she heard great things about how the school supports military families. She met students and staff and had an opportunity to see one of our World-Class schools in action. More than half of Ashland’s students are from military-connected families.
  • Hamish Brewer, Principal of Occoquan Elementary, was named National Distinguished Principal for Virginia by the Virginia Association of Elementary School Principals. He was completely surprised by this tremendous award.
  • Four high schools are included in the 2017 U.S. News & World Report High School Rankings. Patriot High School earned a Gold Medal—a Prince William County Public Schools first—placing it among the top two percent of more than 22,000 public high schools nationwide. Osbourn Park, Battlefield, and Woodbridge earned Silver Medals, for scores in the top 10 percent nationwide.
  • Betsy Young, supervisor of School Social Workers, is the recipient of an award from Stop Child Abuse Now of Northern Virginia. Mrs. Young was honored for her leadership in preventing sex trafficking of teenagers in Prince William County.
  • The School Division won a national photo contest sponsored by the United States Department of Agriculture. The photo was of a vibrant, colorful, and delicious meal. This meal is a student favorite, and it is called “Baja Cantina Nachos.” The meal includes corn salad, canned pears topped with fresh blueberries, apple slices, and nachos. Congratulations to School Food and Nutrition Services Director Serena Suthers and her team, especially Samantha Ronk, marketing and communications specialist, who took the great photo.
  • Congratulations to Battlefield High School students who excelled on National Latin Exams. Thirty-nine students participated and 15 earned awards and recognition. Please see the announcement on our School Division website on all the awards.
  • The Forest Park High School Army JROTC Battalion earned recognition as an Honor Unit of Distinction after its recent 4th Brigade Inspection. Only five percent of all Army JROTC programs in the country are recognized with this designation. Congratulations to Colonel Jacqueline Bullock, First Sergeant Anthony Garris, and the cadets.
  • Our robotics students are well accomplished and have once again won awards at regional, national, and world events. 
    • At the recent VEX robotics World Championships, Woodbridge High School’s Team 1575-D won the Design Award, and two Benton Middle School teams took home the Design Award and the Build Award.
    • The VEX IQ World Championships, for elementary through sixth grade, were held following the VEX competition. Glenkirk won the Design Award. PWCS was also represented by Graham Park and Gainesville Middle Schools, and Ashland and Triangle Elementary Schools. 
    • VEX Worlds will air on CBS Sports on June 11 and later in the summer on ESPN2. Two Benton teams were interviewed for the broadcast.
    • Battlefield, Gar-Field, and Osbourn Park participated in the FIRST Robotics World Championships. Battlefield’s Ilite Team 1885 won the Chairman’s Award, which represents a model team.
    • Our many thanks to SPARK, our education foundation and the sponsors, coaches, and mentors who have made PWCS the go-to school system for robotics. 
  • There are several events to make note of, including:
    • The Prince William County Community Expo which will be held on May 20. This event will be at the Pfitzner Stadium complex, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    • The third annual suicide awareness walk organized by Forest Park High School government students will also be held on Saturday, May 20. The walk will start at 9 a.m. from the school’s gym. This is a 6.2 mile walk from Forest Park to Hylton High School and back.
    • The ribbon cutting and dedication for the new Kilby Elementary School will be held on Tuesday, May 23 at 6 p.m.
  • This is Teacher Appreciation Week. On behalf of the School Board and Leadership Team, our sincere thanks to our teaching staff for all that they do both in and out of the classroom. Our students achieve in large measure because their teachers encourage and motivate them to learn.
  • Dr. Walts attended several School of Excellence celebrations recently. He congratulated Minnieville, Loch Lomond, Westridge, Tyler, King, Fitzgerald, Bennett, Marshall, Occoquan, and Montclair Elementary Schools, Saunders Middle School, and Forest Park High School on their outstanding achievements.
  • Dr. Walts wrapped up by proposing a new way to address certain Board Member requests in the absence of an official policy on the topic. He recommended that the School Board consider a new policy to place on its agenda for considering any individual member requests that would take more than 30 minutes of staff time or cost more than $50. In those cases, the full Board would determine what the Superintendent should direct staff to do. Dr. Walts asked that the proposed policy be added to the May 17 School Board meeting agenda. 

Volume 12, Number 16 – Publication Date: May 5, 2017 

School Board Meeting Information:

Individuals who wish to address the School Board under Citizens’ Time should notify the Board Clerk in writing at P.O. Box 389, Manassas, VA 20108; by phone at 703.791.8709; or by email at pwcsclerk@pwcs.edu prior to noon on the day of the Board meeting and will be placed on the list of speakers. Or, individuals may also sign onto the list of speakers maintained at the entrance to the School Board meeting room at the beginning of a regular Board meeting, but prior to 6:55 p.m. on the evening of the meeting. Please provide your name, address, phone number, and topic you would like to speak about. Any deviation from these procedures shall be at the discretion of the Chairman. All speakers must provide the School Board Clerk with their address and phone number in order to verify their residency and permit the Clerk to contact them if necessary. Upon request, the Clerk will not release to the public the address and phone number of the speaker.