Washington County school board briefs

April 21, 2010|By DAN DEARTH

School board OKs expeditures

The Washington County Board of Education approved the following expenditures during a meeting Tuesday:

o $365,000 to replace the roof at Sharpsburg Elementary School

o $1.47 million to replace the roof at Hancock Middle/Senior High School

o $234,000 to replace auditorium seating at Clear Spring High School

o $649,500 to replace HVAC equipment at Old Forge Elementary School

o $276,000 to replace water chillers at Hancock Elementary School

o $697,217 to purchase milk for schools from July 1, 2010, to June 30, 2011.

o $648,075 to lease copiers for five years

o $533,644.88 to purchase office supplies

WCPS could earn as much as $2.8 million from Race to the Top initiative

Washington County Public Schools stands to gain as much as $2.8 million over the next four years from a federal education-reform program.


On Tuesday, the Washington County Board of Education voted 4-3 to sign a memorandum of understanding with the State of Maryland to seek funding from the Race to the Top initiative.

Maryland could receive up to $250 million if state officials submit a successful reform plan with the federal government. Any money the state receives would be disbursed among local school systems that participate in the program.

Anthony Trotta, chief legal counsel for Washington County Public Schools, said the school system's share from Race to the Top would range between $1.5 million and $2.8 million over a four-year period.

Board Vice President Justin Hartings and Board member Donna Brightman said they opposed signing the memorandum of understanding because they believed Race to the Top would create too much oversight from the federal government.

Board member William Staley also opposed the program.

Board President Wayne Ridenour said he supported the proposal because local school systems likely would be subjected to federal reforms even if they chose not to seek funding from Race to the Top.

"I don't think we can thumb our noses at it," Ridenour said. "We're probably going to have to support it anyway."

$300,000 approved for entrance improvements at Smithsburg schools

The Washington County Board of Education on Tuesday approved spending as much as $300,000 to improve the entrances at the elementary and high schools in Smithsburg.

The project includes the installation of traffic lights and is expected to be completed by the end of this summer, according to Washington County Public Schools documents.

Funding will come from the Capital Maintenance Budget.

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