Education Digest


Education Beat

News from Howard County schools and colleges

September 04, 2005

Howard High Class of '85 plans reunion; classmates sought

Education DigestThe Howard High School Class of 1985 is looking for classmates for its 20-year reunion, to be held from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. Oct. 22 at Tiber River Tavern in Ellicott City.

Information: Cathy Greger Pryor, 410-379-0315, or howard high1985

Columbia Association holding poetry contest

The Columbia Association is holding a poetry contest for students ages 13 to 18.

The contest winner will read his or her poem during the "Hear My Voice" Teen Day event from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 18 at Columbia Teen Center in Oakland Mills Village Center.

Teens are asked to create an original work based on the theme "Hear My Voice" and/or teen empowerment. There is no word limit. However, entries must not be longer than three minutes when read aloud. Profanity, sexual innuendo and references to drugs and/or alcohol will be grounds for disqualification.

Entries are due by 5 p.m. Sept. 12. To submit a poem, mail it to the Columbia Association Poetry Contest, Attn: Carol Wesser, 10221 Wincopin Circle, Columbia 21044, or

Information: 410-715-5523.

Study-skills classes to start this week

The Stressless Tests program is presenting new study- and test-skills courses for high school and middle school students.

Middle school and high school classes will meet this month from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., beginning this week. Middle school pupils will meet Tuesdays at Burleigh Manor Middle School. High school students will meet Wednesdays at Centennial High School.

Classes will be kept small, and registration will be accepted in the order received.

Classes are designed to help every student learn about his or her most effective study style. The cost is $155.

Stressless Tests is a program of the nonprofit HD Foundation of Howard County.

Information or registration: Betty Caldwell, 410-740-4659.

Safety education offered for families

The STTAR (Specialized Trauma Treatment, Advocacy & Recovery) Center Inc. is providing private safety education for families at its Columbia location.

Presentations will be tailored to the family's needs and schedule, and to the age of the children in attendance.

When registering for the class, parents may choose from several topics: stranger danger, good touch/bad touch, child abuse, safety rules, Internet safety, healthy relationships, sexual harassment, safe dating, dating violence, sexual assault, and date rape drugs. The cost is $45 per family per one-hour class.

Information: Heidi Strominger, 410-290-6432.

Parents can restrict release of information

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (Public Law 93-380) authorizes local school systems to disclose some information from the educational records of a student that is designated as directory information.

The designation includes basic biographical information only; it does not include student grades, test results or any part of academic or discipline records.

The law gives parents and guardians the right to restrict the release of any category of directory information about their child. To ensure that parents are aware of this right and to provide a simple way to exercise it, the Howard County school system has developed an "Annual Directory Information Parent Option Form."

The new form is being sent home with students. It lists the categories of information that the school system can release and provides an opportunity to restrict release of information in any or all of the categories.

The forms will be scanned and student information restricted by parents will be flagged.

Directory information includes the student's name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, major field of study, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, the weight and height of students who are members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, and most recent educational institution attended.

Maryland law permits public school systems to release a student's home address and phone number only to certain organizations.

Information: 410-313-6682.

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