Education Notes

EDUCATION NOTES

May 25, 2008

6 'green' schools to be honored

Six Anne Arundel schools will be honored this week for being "green" schools and integrating lessons about the environment into their daily curriculum.

The Arundel schools-five public and one private-are part of a batch of 36 from across the state to be recognized by the Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education (MAEOE) in an awards ceremony Thursday in Catonsville.

Green school award winners for this year are Benfield Elementary, Broadneck High, Chesapeake Bay Middle, Hebron-Harman Elementary, Mayo Elementary and St. Andrew's United Methodist Day School. West Annapolis, Severna Park and Shipley's Choice elementary schools will also be recertified as green schools this year.

The Maryland Green School program recognizes and supports public and private schools that use their campuses and the local environment as a place to model environmentally sound practices and work with community partners to enhance learning about the climate and habitat. Projects include tree planting, energy and water conservation, erosion control and pollution prevention. The newest schools will bring the total number of Maryland Green Schools to 201.

Chesapeake Bay Middle School in Pasadena, for instance, sponsored a "Green Carnival" to raise student awareness of environmental issues. The students planted native species in their Chesapeake-themed outdoor learning area. Students have partnered with a neighboring elementary school to maintain a bog which serves as a storm water retention area and have raised $4,000 for the Maryland Reef Restoration Project.

Schools apply to be recognized by the program and must document how they incorporate the environment into their instruction and detail their sustainable landscaping and building operations. The certification last for three school years.

Information: www.maeoe.org.

New elementary named Nantucket

County students who will attend a new West County school in the fall now know the name of their new home: Nantucket Elementary School.

On Wednesday, the Board of Education unanimously approved the name of the county's 78th elementary school, which is to open in August. The name was the overwhelming choice of parents over 11 other suggestions made at a May 14 community meeting. The school had previously been called Gambrills-Area Elementary School.

The school, on Nantucket Drive in Crofton, is led by Principal Diana Strohecker. It is expected to have about 640 students in kindergarten through fifth grade.

14 school employees get excellence awards

Fourteen employees of the county public schools employees have earned the Maryland Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development Excellence in Education Award for their work with the system's International Baccalaureate program.

Since it was formed in 2003, the school system's IB staff has gained IB authorization for Annapolis, Meade and Old Mill high schools. The three schools now offer the IB diploma program for students in grades 11 and 12. Annapolis, MacArthur and Old Mill North middle schools have been accepted as candidate schools for the IB middle years program and started this year with sixth-graders at each school. The team is working to gain IB school authorization for the middle schools.

The initial enrollment of 130 students in two high schools has grown to 1,200 students in the three high schools and three middle schools. By 2010, it is projected that the number will rise to more than 4,000 students systemwide.

Local IB test scores exceeded world averages in May 2006 and 2007, the first two years of IB diploma exam scores for Annapolis and Old Mill.

The team members being honored are:

Annapolis Cluster: Annapolis Middle School Principal Carolyn Page and the school's program coordinator-designate, Laura Lane; and Annapolis High School Principal Donald Lilley and the school's diploma program coordinator, Nancy Heiles.

Meade Cluster: MacArthur Middle School Principal Reginald Farrare and the school's program coordinator-designate, Ann Gemellas; and Meade High Principal Daryl Kennedy and the school's program coordinator-designate, Jennifer Quinn.

Old Mill Cluster: Old Mill Middle School North Principal Sean McElhaney and the school's program coordinator-designate, Susan Shelby; and Old Mill Middle School North Principal George Kispert and Elizabeth Mitchell, diploma program coordinator at Old Mill High School.

IB central office: Christine Amiss, IB program coordinator, and Mary Austin, IB program teacher specialist.

The 14-member team will be honored at the association's annual spring forum Tuesday at Towson University.

Course for parents earns award for AACC

Anne Arundel Community College received a 2008 Innovation of the Year Award from the League for Innovation of the Community College for its Parenting the Middle School Child course.

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