Protest MCPS Budget Cuts to AEI
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The Gifted and Talented Association of Montgomery County (GTA) seek your help to advocate on an urgent issue facing MCPS families. The Superintendent’s FY 2019 recommended budget proposes significant cuts to the Division of Accelerated and Enriched Instruction (AEI), including eliminating the position of AEI Director, which will result in major reductions in both program capacity and MCPS leadership in meeting the needs of advanced learners.
AEI’s tiny but energetic staff provides a vast array of services affecting all of our schools and tens of thousands of our students. Examples include, but are not limited to:
· Academic programming for highly able students both in magnet programs and at local schools, including development and implementation of increased capacity for application magnet programs and new GT curriculum in local schools in the current school year in response to the Metis Associates Choice Study.
· Collaboration with the curriculum supervisors in MCPS to create curriculum documents that clearly define desired outcomes for accelerated and advanced students as well as instructional strategies, resources, and materials to achieve those outcomes.
· Instructional and programming support for early talent development in all schools, but especially those serving populations that historically haven’t gotten access to enriched instruction that allows academic talents to shine.
· Gifted and Talented (GT) identification, including the development and monitoring of the systemwide identification procedures that are required by state law.
· Enriched and Accelerated Title I professional learning community and primary talent coach positions that support the planning and implementation of instruction of highly able students in Title I schools.
· Identification, programming, and supports for Twice Exceptional (GT/LD) students.
· Support for IB and AP programming across all schools.
· Professional development at both system- and school-based levels that promotes enriched and accelerated instruction so that all students can have access to rigorous and challenging instruction.
· Individualized support for highly able students whose needs are not being met by their current schedules.
More information on AEI is available at: http://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/curriculum/enriched/about/
If this budget is implemented as presented, there will no longer be a centralized, director-led division in MCPS that oversees all of these vital functions that serve so many of our students and that functions as a single point of contact for the community. In addition, although the budget proposal claims capacity and programming will be preserved by finding “efficiencies,” it is clear that AEI’s capacity to support families and students will be severely restrained. AEI will continue to exist, but as a much smaller unit without the leadership, expertise, and structure of a division directly focused on the needs of students who need accelerated and enriched curriculum and teaching to reach their full potential. No other office in MCPS makes those students’ needs its priority.
We must act! This petition will be used to tell the Superintendent and the Board of Education how these cuts will devastate the educational opportunities for tens of thousands of students in MCPS.
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