Contracts awarded for the installation of MCPS water bottle filling stations
The Montgomery County School Board on Thursday awarded contracts to three companies to install water bottle filling stations in nearly 100 schools.
A full cost was not provided in school board documents, but MCPS officials had previously estimated it to be around $ 1.5 million. Contracts have been awarded to:
• Denver-Elek of Baltimore
• Mechanical contractors Mallick of Gaithersburg
• Shapiro and Duncan from Rockville
MCPS plans to use funds from its capital or operating budgets to fund the project, and then to be “paid back” by federal grants. Specifically, MCPS plans to apply for funds through the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund, created to help schools across the country solve problems responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to school board documents, 75 elementary schools, 15 middle schools and two high schools do not have gas stations. The goal is to ensure that each school has at least two gas stations and have them installed by the fall.
In recent years, gas stations have been installed as part of other construction projects in schools, or if they have been purchased by parent-teacher associations or other community organizations.
School district officials said advocating for students over the past three years is what ultimately pushed the initiative forward.
Since at least 2018, students have advocated for gas stations, stressing the need for filtered water. They also argued that the resorts are more environmentally friendly as they reduce the need for single-use plastic water bottles.
In 2018, MCPS spent approximately $ 415,000 on single-use water bottles handed out over lunch. The school district has purchased more than 3 million plastic water bottles, according to data from MCPS.
MCPS Special Education Officer hired by Charles County Schools
Kevin Lowndes, the associate superintendent of special education at MCPS, was appointed this week as the assistant superintendent of Charles County Public Schools.
In a press release announcing the nomination, Charles County Public Schools wrote that his school board had approved Lowndes’ nomination in a unanimous vote on Monday.
As Assistant Superintendent, Lowndes “will provide support, leadership and vision to schools in the areas of curriculum and teaching, assessment, special education, student services and other programs. schools, ”according to the press release.
Previously, Lowndes was Principal of Wheaton High School and Deputy Principal of Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School.
In Charles County, Lowndes will join former MCPS Academic Director Maria Navarro. Navarro took office as Charles County Superintendent on July 1.
Charles County has approximately 27,000 students.
Hundreds of MCPS retirees honored
Hundreds of MCPS retirees were thanked for their work at Thursday’s school board meeting.
About 650 people were recognized in a resolution at the meeting, an annual event at MCPS. The number of retirees is comparable to the figures before the pandemic.
In 2019, 652 retirees were honored.
The oldest person on this year’s list was Connie L. Pokress, a teacher at Walter Johnson High School, who was employed by MCPS for 54 years.
Certificates will be mailed to every retiree this month. A traditional in-person celebration will not take place due to the pandemic, district officials say.