HCPS 411 Update

April 7, 2022

National Assistant Principals Week is April 4–8, 2022!

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March Monthly Minute With Dr. Bulson

Were you unable to join the Monthly Minute last week? No worries - we have you covered! Click below to watch Dr. Bulson's latest Monthly Minute message from March 31, 2022.

To view a complete archive of all past Monthly Minute videos, visit the Monthly Minute page on our website by clicking here.

Monthly Minute with Dr. Bulson. March 31 , 2022

Safety and Security Alert

Tips for Addressing Bullying and Harassment

Dealing with bullying behavior in the classroom is time-consuming for teachers. It limits opportunities for academic instruction and positive learning experiences.

Bullying can negatively impact everyone involved, including those who bully. It can lead to problems with physical or mental health, substance abuse, school performance, and more. It’s important to keep all students safe from these outcomes.

Tips for teachers:

  • Understand the difference between bullying and conflict (bullying involves repeated aggressive behaviors where a power imbalance exists).
  • Encourage communication from parents about bullying and take their concerns seriously.
  • Don’t label students as “bullies” or “victims.” Work with each student to understand and solve the situation. Don’t assume one child is completely at fault.
  • Be aware of the signs of bullying and violent behavior, taking appropriate action when necessary. Don’t tell the students to “talk it out,” as this does not tend to help bullying situations.

Tips for students:

  • Be kind to other students, including those outside of your friend group.
  • Include other students in games and activities as much as possible.
  • Be a good bystander: let a teacher know if you suspect someone is being bullied, or if you witness a situation, you think might become violent.
  • Only confront someone who is bullying if you feel safe to do so. Stand up for yourself in a calm, clear manner.
  • Practice “I” statements. For example, instead of saying, “you’re being mean,” try saying, “I feel upset when you do that.”

Diversity 365

In honor of Celebrate Diversity Month, we invite you to share how your school or office celebrates diversity throughout the year. Each month, we will highlight a cultural/organizational holiday. All you have to do is take a picture or two and share the wonderful things your school or office is doing to celebrate the contributions we all make to HCPS.

This month, we are celebrating Autism Acceptance!

Please email your celebration pictures and a brief write-up about the event to Sherron Foster-Moore, Diversity Retention & Recruitment Specialist, at Sherron.Fostermoore@hcps.org by Friday, April 29, 2022. This month’s submissions will be shared in the May 5th edition of the HCPS 411 Update.

Four-Day Work Week Summer 2022 Schedule Approved

The Summer 2022 four-day work week schedule has been finalized. The nine (9) week period will commence the week of June 20, 2022, and terminate at the end of the week of August 15, 2022. The linked document PROCEDURAL GUIDELINES Summer Hours 2022 details the work schedule options and provides guidance regarding plans and exceptions to the schedule.

Questions regarding this information should be directed to Human Resources at 410-588-5226.

Calendar Updates

Primary Election Day is shown on the current calendar as Tuesday, June 28. This is reflected on the HCPS calendar as a systemwide closure with schools and offices closed. Although the Maryland Primary Election has been rescheduled to Tuesday, July 19, HCPS schools and offices will remain closed on Tuesday, June 28, 2022. Calendar updates regarding July 19 will be provided at a future date. (Previously published in the March 24, 2022, HCPS 411 Update.)

Updated Calendar Information – Maryland Primary Elections have been rescheduled to Tuesday, July 19, 2022. HCPS schools and offices are closed on Primary Election days as outlined in our negotiated agreements. Per the rescheduling of the Maryland Primary Election, schools and offices will be closed on Tuesday, July 19, 2022.

Questions regarding this information should be directed to Human Resources at 410-588-5226.

April 19, 2022, Professional Development: Clerical Staff

All clerical staff will have the option to participate in systemwide professional development on April 19.

A chart with session times, descriptions, and links is housed in the April 19th PD Choices for Clerical SharePoint folder. Please note that some sessions require Hector sign up.

Clerical Staff may opt to Telework.

Questions about this information can be directed to HCPSProfessionalLearning@hcps.org.

National Board Scholarship Applications for 2022-23

The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) seeks to elevate the status, voice, and role of accomplished teachers in shaping a true profession. Through a rigorous certification process, teachers may achieve certification in 26 areas, which represent all content areas. HCPS is pleased to announce that the National Board scholarship application window is open. The scholarship funds will cover most of the cost of the certification process. The only cost to teachers will be a $75 processing fee for each year they attempt to certify.

Click here to apply for the National Board Scholarship: Harford County Public Schools - TalentEd Hire (tedk12.com). All applications are due by April 14, 2022.

Questions regarding this information should be directed to HCPS.NationalBoard@hcps.org.

GET More Program / Conditional Teacher Certification

A huge THANK YOU to all that attended the GET More Program and Conditional Teacher Certification informational session that was held on Monday, March 28. Members of the Human Resources Team explained the options of the GET More Program (for current support staff) and conditional teacher certification. For those that were unable to attend, the session was recorded and is being shared for all to view. Please Click Here to watch the recorded session and to access the GET More Program Guidelines and Application.

We love to grow our own teachers, so we hope you decide to shine with us!

For additional information about the informational session, please contact Shannon Hagan at Shannon.Hagan@hcps.org or 410-588-5238.

Congratulations to This Month's Bowtie Breakfast Honorees!

The HCPS Bowtie Breakfast program celebrates Central Office employees who consistently demonstrate outstanding customer service and go above and beyond in their roles. Honorees are nominated by colleagues to attend Superintendent Bulson’s virtual event held each month. Congratulations to the April honorees! Join us in celebrating our awesome HCPS staff!

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Teacher Tour Stop 4: Student Relationships

“A good education can change anyone. A good teacher can change everything.” -Unknown

The importance of building positive and trusting relationships with students cannot be overstated. No matter the learning environment, the relationship between students and their teachers is critical. These positive relationships lead to improved academic results, motivate students, and boost positive behaviors. Do you know a teacher who is a master at building positive relationships with their students? Tell us about some of the amazing things they do to connect with their students. They could be the next stop on our teacher tour!

Please use this link to nominate an outstanding teacher on or before April 15, 2022. They may be the next stop on our teacher tour!

HCPS Health Challenge, Presented by QuaranTeam 5

THANK YOU to everyone who participated in the HCPS Health Challenge, presented by the QuaranTeam 5! We are excited to announce our three winners – Deanna Burch, Anthony Bunger, and Lauren Byrd! Deanna and Anthony will receive a Nutri Ninja Pro Single Serve Blender, and Lauren will receive a CareFirst gift package. Members of the QuaranTeam 5 will be reaching out to all three winners individually to coordinate the transfer of prizes. We hope everyone enjoyed the health challenges and will continue to prioritize their physical and mental well-being.

If you are interested in continuing your health journey, we encourage you to check out the HCPS Staff Wellness section of hcps.org! Updated monthly, you will find workout videos, healthy recipes, physical challenges, and much more.

Future Business Leaders of America

Congratulations to all Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) State Competitors and Advisors -- and best wishes to those qualifying for Nationals!

Please see the image to the right for more information.

Harford County Education Foundation - Summer Palooza Raffle!

Spring is here, and summer is right around the corner. Harford County Education Foundation is getting ready by hosting the Summer Palooza Raffle! The winner of the raffle will receive a Trailmate All Terrain Igloo Cooler filled to the brim with over $1,200 of great stuff to get your summer fun started! You can learn more about the Summer Palooza raffle and purchase raffle tickets online at https://harfordeducation.org/events/raffle/. Online sales of the raffle will end on April 22, 2022. The winner will be drawn during the annual Chip in Fore Kids Golf Classic and notified on May 3, 2022. The proceeds from the Summer Palooza raffle will fund programs that provide support to teachers and students of Harford County Public Schools. Contact deb@harfordeducation.org with any questions.

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Mark Your Calendar: The Gift of Failure

On Thursday, April 21, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., teacher, international speaker, and celebrated author and columnist Jessica Lahey will present “The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed” at Patterson Mill High School. The presentation is based on her New York Times best-selling book “The Gift of Failure,” which offers parents common-sense advice on how to let children learn from their mistakes.

A seasoned teacher, Ms. Lahey is internationally recognized as an expert on parenting styles and their impact on students’ motivation, learning and resilience. Ms. Lahey will answer questions and provide recommendations to help parents and educators reframe children’s temporary setbacks as beneficial steps toward lasting, long-term success.

Parents and caregivers are invited to attend this free presentation sponsored by the Harford County Department of Community Services’ Office of Drug Control Policy and held in partnership with Harford County Public Schools’ Parent Academy. Childcare is available for children ages 4-12 (pre-registration required). Please register for the event at www.harfordcountymd.gov/services.

2022 Teacher of the Year Sponsor Shout-Outs

Thank you to the following Diamond and Platinum sponsors of the 2022 HCPS Teacher of the Year program!
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Teacher of the Year Sponsorship Poster

Please be on the lookout for a Teacher of the Year sponsorship poster, which will be delivered next week to each of our schools. As a thank you to this year’s sponsors, please display the poster so that our school communities can appreciate the generosity of our local businesses. Thank you for your support – and be sure to tune in on Tuesday, April 12 for the LIVE Teacher of the Year event!

End of Year Tuition Reimbursement Requests

Tuition reimbursement requests, including the Partial Reimbursement Request form that aligns with your union, an itemized receipt showing payment method(s) and amount(s), and an official transcript sent electronically from your university, must be submitted to the transcripts@hcps.org email address within 90 days of the course completion date. Please visit https://hcps365.sharepoint.com/sites/HumanResources/Benefits/tuition/default.aspx for additional tuition reimbursement information, including reimbursement request forms, sample receipts, eligibility, and more details about the reimbursement submission process.

All Spring 2022 semester reimbursement requests received on and after May 1, 2022, will be reimbursed after July 15, 2022, leading up to and including the new school year’s first and second pay dates. Employees will receive an email confirming the reimbursement date of their request once it is processed. This processing timeline will apply to all staff, including those not scheduled to work during the summer break. Employees taking coursework through a direct bill partner will have their coursework billed directly to HCPS. Therefore, no paperwork is needed from the employee for the reimbursement as the partner University/College will provide the required official transcript/grade report.

Courses completed before July 1, 2022, will count towards the July 1, 2021-June 30, 2022 fiscal year, while courses completed on or after July 1, 2022, will count towards the July 1, 2022-June 30, 2023 fiscal year.

Questions concerning reimbursement should be directed to Lisa Patterson at lisa.patterson@hcps.org. Questions concerning certification should be directed to certification@hcps.org.

Professional Development Announcements

Summer MSDE Professional Learning courses

Earn Continuing Professional Development (CPD) credits through courses offered by MSDE, eConnect and Thinkport. The Summer 2022 Course Catalog is now available.

MSDE Registration Dates

  • Monday, April 4, 2022: Registration opens
  • Week of May 2, 2022: Occasionally, courses are cancelled due to low enrollment. During the week of May 2nd, cancellation notifications will be emailed
  • Thursday, May 19, 2022: Registration closes

MSDE Course Dates

  • One credit course: June 15, 2022 – July 12, 2022
  • Two credit courses: June 15, 2022 – July 26, 2022
  • Three credit courses: June 15, 2022 – August 16, 2022
  • Four credit courses: June 8, 2022 – August 30, 2022


Wilmington University – National Board Certified Teacher Programs

For those teachers interested in National Board Certification, there is an additional opportunity to earn graduate-level credit while preparing to attain National Board Certification. Wilmington University offers stackable, online graduate certificate and master’s degree program options that support candidates while they work on National Board components. Please see flier and contact Dr. Palmer at jennifer.l.palmer@wilmu.edu if you are interested in attending an information session to learn more.

English Learners Summer Program Application

HCPS, in partnership with the Department of English Learners (EL) and LASOS, is seeking educators and staff to work our "EL Summer Camp 2022."

This camp is open to all EL students in grades K-12 who are interested to learn about their community and how they play an important role in its functioning. A variety of hands-on academic and social activities are planned to help students to grow in their English proficiency. Walking excursions and visits to community agencies are also planned.


  • Students will be grouped by age level.
  • Camp will run 6/27/21 - 7/22/21 (Monday through Thursday); Fridays are off-site
  • Camp times: 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. *Teaching Staff will work from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. each day.
  • Camp location is Bel Air High School
  • This is a paid opportunity.

To indicate interest and to be considered for this paid opportunity, please complete the application below.

EL Summer Program Application

Questions should be directed to: Chandra Krantz, Supervisor of World Languages and English Learners Programs, at chandra.krantz@hcps.org.

Summer Academic Tutoring

The Academic Tutoring Program will be running from July 10 – August 6, 2022. Tutors will provide students with instructional support and remediation. Tutors are needed in the areas of reading and mathematics for students in grades k-12. Tutors are also needed in science and social studies at the high school level. Tutoring will be offered for the graduation required courses in these two areas. Teachers and paraeducators in any content area may serve as tutors and will be able to identify their desired content(s) and grade level(s). Tutors will also be able to determine the number of tutoring sessions that they would like to conduct each week. Elementary students will be supported in a virtual, one-on-one setting. Middle and high school students will be supported in a virtual, small group setting with three or fewer students. Tutors will be compensated at their true hourly rate when working with students and the negotiated rate for planning.

If you are interested in serving as a tutor, please complete this survey form:


For any questions, please contact Academic.Tutoring@hcps.org.

Summer Jobs in Maintenance Listed

Harford County Public Schools Facilities Management Department has a nine-week Summer Maintenance Program (June 20 – August 18, 2022) open to anyone who enjoys varying jobs such as painting and general maintenance tasks. Those selected will work at school buildings and annexes throughout the Harford County Public Schools system. Applicants must be at least 16 years of age and able to provide their own transportation to the various job sites.

The hours are 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday. There are two 15-minute breaks plus a 30-minute lunch. Starting pay for painting is $12.50.

Applications are located on the Harford County Public Schools website (hcps.org) under About Us > Current Vacancies > Other Career Opportunities/Substitutes. Only online applications will be accepted until positions have been filled.

If you have any questions regarding the program, please call the Hickory Annex at 410-638-4088.

Here’s A Little Treat Just For YOU

Presented by BurnAlong Virtual Wellness Portal

You are doing awesome, and the weekend is almost here! Enjoy some rejuvenation in under 10 minutes with the most popular classes others at Harford County Public Schools have enjoyed this month.

As a reminder, BurnAlong is our health and wellness partner who provides you and your family with access to 1,000’s of online classes from 1,000+ local instructors at no cost to you. To activate your complimentary account, get started by visiting https://fit.burnalong.com/hcps. If you have any trouble accessing your account, contact customercare@burnalong.com.

Find out more about BurnAlong in this brief video.

CareFirst Members: Will You Find the Golden Ticket?

Beginning February 1 through April 30, all CareFirst Members registered for their Well-being Platform powered by Sharecare will be eligible for the Golden Ticket!

What is the Golden Ticket Promotion? Every month, 60 randomly selected members will have a Golden Ticket image on their Well-being platform timeline. Lucky winners will each receive a $25 Visa® Virtual Gift Card! To claim your prize, you must find the Golden Ticket on your Sharecare timeline located in the CareFirst ShareCare app and click the "Claim Your Prize" button.

Ready to win? Follow these steps to get started!

1. Register or log in to your Sharecare Account! Click here to access your Sharecare Account.

2. Check your timeline daily to see if a Golden Ticket image appears.

3. If you see the image, follow the prompts to claim your prize!

EAP Webinar: Keeping Engaged and Preventing Burnout

Presented by KEPRO Employee Assistance Program

The March KEPRO EAP resources are here. As we enter the third year of the pandemic, it is no surprise that many are experiencing heightened stress levels. Even though many things are happening beyond your control, there are still some steps to take to help reduce stress. This session will help you learn how to get around burnout, prevent it, and keep yourself engaged in your work and personal life. Click here to learn more.

Date: Available on demand beginning March 17, 2022

Broadcast Length: 50 minutes
How to Access: Go to your EAP website: www.EAPHelpLink.com. Enter your code: HCPS and look for Online Seminars in the lower left-hand corner of this homepage, or you can search for them by title.

The Employee Assistance Program is available to employees and their families anytime, any day and is a free, confidential program to help you balance your work, family, and personal life.

Employees and their family members can call KEPRO 24-hours per day, 7 days per week toll-free at (866) 795-5701 to visit their website online at www.EAPhelplink.com.

CareFirst Wellness Announcements: Stress Awareness Month

April is Stress Awareness Month

Feeling overwhelmed lately? You are not alone. Now more than ever, many of us face challenges that can be stressful, overwhelming, and exhausting. In addition to dealing with the regular stressors of our day-to-day lives, the pandemic has added an additional layer of stress and uncertainty. It is important to help yourself learn how to cope with stress in healthy ways. To learn more, click here to view CareFirst’s April Wellness Newsletter.

April Recipe of the Month: Vegetable Fried Rice: Click here to learn more and try this delicious dish.

CareFirst/ShareCare Monthly Challenge: April Live Mindfully Challenge

April 1 – April 30

Your behavioral health is important. Mindfulness has some significant health benefits like improved sleep and boosted brainpower. This month, challenge yourself to seek out moments to breathe a little deeper and work towards living in the green by staying “calm” or “productive” each day. To learn more about how to participate, click here.

Upcoming Webinar Workshop Series: Retirewise

Get your finances on track with the Retirewise workshop series presented by MetLife.

With Retirewise, you’ll be on your way to making smarter financial decisions and creating an action plan that works for you. From budgeting and building an emergency fund to determining your investment options and creating a will, there’s something for everyone to learn.

Each Retirewise session has different topics that build on each other:

  • Building the Foundation
  • Creating & Managing Wealth
  • Establishing Your Retirement Income Stream
  • Making the Most of What You Have

Workshop Details:

Session 1: Wednesday, May 4, 2022

Session 2: Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Session 3: Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Session 4: Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Time: 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. EST

If asked for the company name, enter Harford County Public Schools.

Click here to reserve your spot! Register online now. Space may be limited.

On the fence? Here’s a sneak peek of what to expect. Spouses and partners are welcome! For more information, click here.

Shout Outs!

"A huge shout out and thank you to the multitude of facilities staff that responded to Havre de Grace Middle/High on April 1st. When we discovered a leak and flood in the building thirty minutes to the start of school, the call was put out and any and all available members of the facilities department responded as quickly as possible. Due to their quick response, we were able to open school, on time for instruction with little to no impact on the day. Thank you."

-Brad Spence, Principal, Havre de Grace High School

"A special shout out to all of the school librarians in HCPS! It is National Library Week and School Library Month! You are all doing amazing things for our students and staff, keep up the great work!"

-Sarah Scholl, School Librarian, Havre de Grace Middle High School

"Shout out to Jennifer Edwards, administrative support technician for Human Resources-Department of Benefits, for the HCPS Limelight Award. I recently had a question about adding my daughter to my health benefits. My initial question led to additional questions. Jennifer was incredibly helpful, knowledgeable, and responsive to my questions. She replied immediately to my emails with specific information that helped me learn the process. She put my mind at ease with her friendly and knowledgeable replies. She even called me to make sure we both were clear on information we were sharing with each other."

-Rebecca Green, School Counselor, Forest Hill Elementary School

"A huge shout out and thank you to Deb Meagher in the Math Office. Deb always has the time and patience for our questions. She is a wealth of math content knowledge, best instructional practices, and solutions to all of the puzzles we bring to her. She is innovative and always looking for the best way to support and enhance math instruction for our elementary students. I can't say thank you enough!"

-Andria Walker, Title I Math Specialist, William Paca/ Old Post Road Elementary School

"A special shout out to Greg Willison, behavior coach, for presenting to our in-person teaching staff at Swan Creek School. His expertise in the area and his willingness to support teachers is much appreciated.

Another special shout out to Juraj Duracka, ESOL specialist, for facilitating an excellent professional development to our middle/high elearning staff at Swan Creek School. Thank you for your continued support of ELL students and their teachers."

-Brooke Fisher, Teacher - Specialist Instructional Coach, Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment

"Aberdeen High School has been gathering items to send to refugees from Ukraine during the conflict. They have gathered more than 40 boxes that will be sent to the St. George's Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Yardville, New Jersey."

-Albert L Nistico III, American Government/Economics/World History, Aberdeen High School

Welcome to HCPS!

Please join us in welcoming the following new hires to the HCPS family:

  • Michael Eiler, EndPoint Technician, Technology Office
  • Charles Guthrie, School Bus Attendant, Transportation Department

Office of Communications and Family Outreach

Editor: Lindsay Bilodeau, communications specialist

To submit an HCPS Shout Out or recognize a colleague in the Spotlight on Customer Service, please email the information and photo (if available) to HCPS.411@hcps.org.