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FCS Community Update for May 4, 2022

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May 3, 2022, Post-Meeting Update

The Fulton County School Board met on Tuesday, May 3, 2022, for its regularly scheduled Board meeting at the North Learning Center. The following are highlights of some of the more highly discussed topics, with the full agenda available online. Other topics discussed or approved are available via BoardDocs. Summaries of Board actions can be found here and Board policy updates can be found here.

K-8 STEAM Academies

Chief Operating Officer Clifford Jones presented information and discussed the benefits of adding K-8 STEAM Academies to FCS's portfolio of schools. STEAM Stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Math. Fulton County Schools is committed to establishing K-8 STEAM Academies. Mr. Jones said the addition of K-8 schools to the FCS portfolio of school options will add a high-quality choice for parents. K-8 schools present an evidenced-based approach that improves student achievement and fits within the district's overall commitment to middle school redesign. These academies will include lessons learned and best practices from our STEM schools, attributes of our arts programs, relevancy, and authenticity of our CTAE programs, and the high academic standards of our math and science courses all under one building and in one school. See the presentation.

In a following presentation, Chief Operating Officer Noel Maloof and Deputy Chief Operating Officer Yngrid Huff discussed the facilities master plan based on needs around enrollment, facility conditions and academic programming. They reviewed both the north and south regions, detailing which schools are in consideration for school closure/consolidation and presented an option to facilitate a K-8 STEAM option in portions of the district. These ideas will impact the fall redistricting and feeder alignments. Click here to see the full presentation.

Have thoughts or questions about K-8 STEAM models? Click on the image below, scan the QR code or visit the Thought Exchange website to give us your feedback.

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Superintendent's Update

Dr. Mike Looney reminded everyone that we are in the final stretch of the school year and encouraged students to stay focused these next few weeks. He also noted this week is National Teacher Appreciation Week by thanking our teachers and expressing gratitude for their sacrifices. Not to be forgotten, National Principals Day was Sunday, May 1, and Dr. Looney made sure to thank our incredibly hard-working FCS principals. Now that the Student Government Council (SGC) elections are complete, Dr. Looney thanked students, parents, and members of the community for their SGC service. Almost 400 candidates ran for open seats. SGC's are a critical component of the efforts undertaken as part of FCS' unique distinction as a state Charter District.

Seven Fulton Schools Recognized in Two Best Public High Schools in Georgia Lists

Seven FCS high schools were recognized by Niche.com on its list of the Best Public High Schools in Georgia for 2022. Niche compiles user reviews and data from the U. S. Department of Education, including grades, culture and diversity, health and safety, sports, and more for its rankings. Northview High School holds the number two spot on the list. The same seven schools were also recognized by U.S. News & World Report on its list of 2022 Best High Schools. Using data from the 2019-20 school year, nearly 18,000 public high schools were ranked. Congratulations to Northview, Alpharetta, Chattahoochee, Johns Creek, Milton, Cambridge, and Roswell high schools on their recognitions.

Annual Perception Survey

Executive Director of Strategy & Governance Dr. Ryan Moore presented the preliminary results from the new FCS Annual Perception Survey. This survey was administered to staff, students in grades 4-12, and families from April 11 through April 22, 2022. Nearly 12,000 parents and more than 50 percent of staff participated in the survey. Staff will share more comprehensive results at the end of May and interactive dashboards will be developed over the summer.

New Code of Conduct Rules

Assistant Superintendent Dr. Christopher Matthews explained three new rulings instituted in the Code of Conduct and Student Handbook for the 2022-23 school year. Two rulings relate to Personal Communication Devices (PCD) and the third new rule is regarding student behavior on school buses. Regarding the first two new rules, Dr. Matthews explained that accessing, engaging, and contributing to the instructional process is vitally important to student success, and indicated that students' use of PCDs in the classroom is highly distracting. Examples of PCDs are cell phones, tablets, apple watches, gizmos and other personal communication devices. While students are allowed to have PCDs, FCS is enacting a new rule prohibiting the use of PCDs in elementary schools during the school day. Grades 6-12 will also be allowed to have PCDs but cannot use them during instruction or class time unless instructed to do so by a teacher or other staff member for learning purposes. Additionally, using a PCD to record and distribute unlawful activity, egregious or dangerous events is prohibited. Dr. Matthews also shared some of the high-level language revisions in the Code of Conduct, including updating technology offense descriptions to be current with current trends and terminology, and explained the increased tiered consequences for specific events, including battery of student with injury, bullying, forceful abduction, and teasing/taunting. See the full presentation here.

Budget Hearing #1

During the first public hearing for the FY2023, Chief Financial Officer Marvin Dereef reminded the Board of the major parameters they set forth to give the Superintendent's budget recommendation. Dereef also indicated the proposed budget is based off a recommended revenue projects that include a millage rate reduction from 17.59 to 17.49. Other highlights include a new compensation package for employees and a proposed General Fund budget with 78 percent allocated directly to schools. The public is also invited to attend the next budget hearing, scheduled for May 12.

Summer School Registration

Summer School registration will continue through May 26. Late registration is also available at the summer learning sites on June 6 & 7. The face-to-face session will take place in 36 schools June 8 through July 8 (Elementary School from 7:40 a.m.-11:40 a.m., Middle School from 8:20 a.m.-12:20 p.m., High School from 8:55 a.m.-1:20 p.m.). Fulton Virtual will take place June 1-July 13 with late registration taking place June 1-6 online. Breakfast, lunch and transportation will be provided at all in-person locations. For more information, visit the FCS Summer School website.

Open Enrollment Deadline is May 16

The district has identified 75 schools that can accept transfer students next school year through Georgia’s Quality Basic Education Act, which allows parents of students enrolled in a public K-12 school to enroll in another school within the district if space allows. It is a lottery-based selection process. The application deadline is Monday, May 16 at 4:30 p.m. Parents will be notified of their child's transfer status on June 30. Click here for the full list of schools accepting Open Enrollment transfers.

Let's Talk Schools

Check out our latest episode of Let's Talk Schools, hosted by Superintendent Dr. Mike Looney, as he chats about all things FCS. This week Dr. Looney interviews Global Impact Academy Principal Anthony Newbold and Innovation Academy Principal Tim Duncan.

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Find out what is going on at Fulton County Schools. Be sure to check out the FCS News Website for the latest and greatest FCS happenings.