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Education's Relationship to Our County

The Education system is important not only to citizens with students in school, but to the county as a whole.

On December 19, 2012, Superintendent Kevin Maxwell presented to the Board of Education his recommended Fiscal Year 2014 Operating and Capital Budgets.  Dr. Maxwell discussed the successes and challenges of our school system as well as what we collectively are doing to enhance the quality of life for all persons in Anne Arundel County, not just those with children attending our schools.

Anne Arundel County Public Schools is an integral part of what makes our county great.  We are a key player in promoting a higher quality of life for our nearly 550,000 residents.  Our approach to our relationship with the county is one of partnership and collaboration both inside and outside the classroom. 

The more we invest in the quality of our curriculum and facilities, the greater the impact we will have on all aspects of life in our great county.   For example, studies in counties across the country have shown that an increase in test scores directly leads to an increase in home values.  People are willing to pay more for homes where they know the public schools are of higher quality.   This subsequently impacts the tax base for the county.   

Our investment in our schools and their facilities is also measured by the quality of facilities that are readily accessible to the general public for athletics or in support of important public services. Our schools are true hubs of community activity.  AACPS has partnered with the county to convey land for police stations, public water towers and fire stations, and works closely with the county police in the School Resource Officer program, a nationally recognized model that places county police officers at nearly two dozen schools throughout the county.  The school system also works closely with the county Department of Recreation and Parks on utilization of turf fields, gymnasiums and other school spaces for community athletics and clubs.   The vast majority of community sports programs in our county utilize school-funded facilities. 

The results of these partnerships and direct investment in classroom experience not only build strong students, but also strong communities that attract more businesses and develop jobs, increase the quality of life for the residents and increase the tax revenue for the county.   This model becomes a circuitous system that continuously benefits students, residents, business owners, and the county as a whole.  

AACPS is dedicated to being fiscally responsible and strategic in how it invests its allocated funds in the schools and community, especially during these times of tight budgets.   In all decisions, we strive to continuously look at both how a student is directly impacted and how the community is impacted as a whole.  Keeping our eyes on both goals and our continued teamwork with the county assures success that benefits all residents. 

We encourage the community to be involved and attend any of our public events.  Important Upcoming Calendar Dates include: 

January

8

10

22

Public Hearing – Old Mill HS, 7:00 p.m.

Public Hearing – Parham Building, 7:00 p.m.

BOE Budget Workshop – Parham Building, 6:00 p.m.

February

20

BOE approves budget request – Parham Building, 10:00 a.m.

March

1

Requested Operating and Capital Budgets forwarded to County Executive

May

1

County Executive’s recommended Operating & Capital Budgets forwarded to County Council – County Council holds Public Hearings in May

June

15

19

County Council’s deadline to approve final budgets

BOE approval of Operating & Capital Budgets (date subject to change)

July

1

FY2014 Budgets implemented

This post was written by Amalie E. Brandenburg, who was appointed to a five-year term on the Board of Education of Anne Arundel County in July 2011. She is a resident of Severna Park, and she and her husband have 4 children, two current Benfield Elementary students, and two future students.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Janet Norman January 09, 2013 at 10:10 PM
Thank you, Ms. Brandenburg, for disseminating this information and for your service on the AACPS School Board. The quality of our schools is a huge component of our lives here in AA Co., and we look forward to working with you to make them better.
Lara Boeck January 11, 2013 at 08:21 PM
Allow me to echo Ms. Norman's comments. The foundation of our communities and larger society rest in large part on our public schools. Adequate funding must be wisely allocated to maximize both quality of education and quality of facilities. Many of us in the county are eager to work with the Board of Education to ensure continued value and improvement of our schools. Publicizing this blog and the School Board meeting schedule widely and at regular intervals would help maintain awareness of AACPS issues in the minds of the county residents.
Amy Leahy January 14, 2013 at 03:07 PM
I would love to see the Board of Education be more responsive to the citizens and the students. I do not disagree totally with Ms. Brandenburg's assessment but I am dismayed at the heavy-handedness of the Board's and the Superintendent's decisions. It would be beneficial to the citizens if the BOE worked with the county government also instead of the antagonistic relationship that has been prevalent for the past 25 years or so. The county government is not blameless in this either, by the way.

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