St. Mary's Co. Public Schools News Briefs

Maryland Physical Education Demonstration School

Evergreen Elementary School has been selected as a Maryland Physical Education Demonstration School for 2014-17. This recognition is awarded to schools whose physical education programs are considered to be exemplary and thus model programs in the state.

The Maryland Physical Education Demonstration Schools Program is affiliated with the Maryland Association of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance; the President's Council on Physical Fitness, Sports and Nutrition; and the Maryland State Department of Education. The selection process requires that the entire physical education program is evaluated through an initial application and a subsequent on-site visit. As a part of the application, teachers are required to list three Exemplary Features and provide evidence of Quality Teaching; Philosophy; Organization and Administration; Curriculum and Planning; Assessment and Evaluation; Professionalism; and Facilities, Equipment, and Supplies.

Mr. Michael Mason, Consultant for Adapted Physical Education at the Maryland State Department of Education and Visitation Team Captain, commented that during their daylong visit the visitation team had observed lessons that reflected the Maryland Physical Education Standards and well developed plans that included multiple activities with pictures, charts, visual aids, and the use of a variety of assessments linked to state and local curriculum. The team also noted that maximum active learning time was observed in all lessons, with students being engaged in movement more than 50% of the time; extensive extra-curricular activities highlighted the collaboration of the physical education teachers with other teachers and content areas; and that the inclusion of wellness goals in the School Improvement Plan demonstrated a holistic approach to education.

Physical Education teachers Ms. Sabra Szczyglowski and Mr. Shawn Knott are to be commended on this outstanding achievement. This is the second time that the school has been identified for this award, having received initial Demonstration School status in 2011.

We hope that many physical education teachers from across the state will choose to visit the school to witness outstanding instruction and a commitment to providing students with the skills and knowledge needed to be physically active for a lifetime.

St. Mary's County School Health Council

A general meeting of the School Health Council will be held on June 5, 2014 from 5:30 - 7:00 p.m. The meeting will be held in the St. Mary's County Public Schools Central Administration Building located on Moakley Street in Leonardtown, Maryland in the Board of Education Meeting Room.

The School Health Council functions as an advisory group to the Board of Education and is organized around the Centers for Disease Control's Coordinated School Health model which consists of eight components:

-- Nutrition Services

-- Health Education

-- Physical Education and Activity

-- Healthy and Safe School Environment

-- Counseling, Psychological, and Social Services

-- Health Services

-- Family/Community Involvement

-- Employee Wellness

The meeting is open to all interested parties and representation from all school worksites and departments, as well as from parent(s)/guardian(s) and community agencies, is encouraged. This meeting will initially focus on sharing feedback from the Wellness Policies and Practices Project conducted earlier this spring; a report from attendees of the conference entitled "Making Wellness Work - One School at a Time"; the status of the site-based wellness liaison/coordinator position; and an update on the U.S. Healthier Schools initiative.

Anyone wishing to have an additional item placed on the agenda should e-mail it to prior to the meeting.

Maryland Green School Certification

St. Mary's County Public Schools is committed to a Green School Program that ensures that we work with our students, staff, and community to change energy use and environmental awareness habits through education so that we become lifelong learners and ambassadors of the environment. With an average monthly electric bill of $241,267 for 26 schools and three offices, totaling $3.7 million annually, conserving energy is a practice that must be on the minds of all St. Mary's County Public Schools staff, students, and parents. As part of the Green School Program, Dr. Michael J. Martirano, Superintendent of Schools, challenged all site administrators to have their schools certified as a Maryland Green School.

The Maryland Association of Environmental and Outdoor Education (MAEOE) administers the Maryland Green School Awards Program, which is a holistic, integrated approach to authentic learning that incorporates local environmental issue investigation, professional development with environmental best management practices, and community stewardship. Maryland Green Schools and Centers must be recertified every four years. After three successful recertifications, a school can be granted the title of Sustained Green School.

Prior to the 2014 application process, St. Mary's County Public Schools had 20 schools and two green centers certified through the MAEOE Maryland Green School Awards Program. These schools/centers are (the date is the year the school was certified or recertified):

-- Hollywood Elementary School: 1999, 2002, 2006, 2010 (Sustained Green School)

-- Oakville Elementary School: 2006, 2010

-- Benjamin Banneker Elementary School: 2009, 2013

-- Chesapeake Public Charter School: 2009, 2013

-- Piney Point Elementary School: 2009, 2013

-- White Marsh Elementary School: 2009, 2013

-- Greenview Knolls Elementary: 2010

-- Lettie Marshall Dent Elementary School: 2010

-- Elms Environmental Education Center: 2010

-- Evergreen Elementary School: 2011

-- Dr. James A. Forrest Career and Technology Center: 2011

-- George Washington Carver Elementary School: 2011

-- Mechanicsville Elementary School: 2011

-- Spring Ridge Middle School: 2011

-- Town Creek Elementary School: 2011

-- Dynard Elementary School: 2012

-- Green Holly Elementary School: 2012

-- Leonardtown Elementary School: 2012

-- Ridge Elementary School: 2012

-- Leonardtown Middle School: 2012

-- Park Hall Elementary School: 2013

-- Department of Capital Planning & Green Schools: 2013

We are excited to announce that during the 2014 application process three additional schools were certified, bringing our total amount of certified schools to 23 out of 27 and two certified centers, for a total of 25 certified facilities. The total number of schools certified is 85.19%. Three schools and one center also recertified during this application process. As a result of this application process, 100% of the elementary schools and 75% of the middle schools are now Maryland Green Schools.

The newly certified Maryland Green Schools are:

-- Lexington Park Elementary School

-- Esperanza Middle School

-- Leonardtown High School

The three schools that successfully achieved recertification are:

-- Oakville Elementary School: second recertification

-- Greenview Knolls Elementary School: first recertification

-- Lettie Marshall Dent Elementary School: first recertification

The center that successfully achieved recertification was:

-- The Elms Environmental Education Center: first recertification

Questions regarding the program may be directed to Mr. J. Bradley Clements, Deputy Superintendent of Schools and Operations, or Mrs. Kimberly Howe, Director of Capital Planning and Green Schools, at 301-475-4256, x 6.

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