Officials detail county concerns about Md. educational mandates

February 12, 1993|By Staff report

Carroll Commissioner Julia W. Gouge and School Superintendent R. Edward Shilling testified in Annapolis yesterday before the House Ways and Means Committee about educational mandates from the state.

Mrs. Gouge said before leaving that she planned to explain how certain mandates affect Carroll and which ones county officials have concerns about. She said she would mention bus `f programs, school construction funds and health screenings.

The hearing is a chance for county officials to explain to legislators how state cuts have affected local budgets, she said.

Mr. Shilling told the Board of Education at its meeting Wednesday that he hoped to ask for more flexibility in several state mandates.

Now that the state requires kindergarten, it also requires 180 days of it. Mr. Shilling said he and several other superintendents support requiring kindergarten, but want some flexibility so that school systems can have occasional early dismissals for teacher training and planning.

He also said he would ask for flexibility in spending the several million dollars a year received through APEX, the state's academic excellence program.

Also, Maryland's "yellow-bus mandate" requires only yellow school buses for transportation of children. Mr. Shilling said he would ask that other vehicles, such as smaller vans, be allowed when necessary, as long as they meet safety requirements.

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