HCPS 411 Update

October 13, 2022


Many of our positions are filled by word of mouth by our employees. We have added this section to the HCPS 411 Update so that you can help us share our employment needs.

  • Bus Drivers and Attendants
  • Food Service Workers (various locations)
  • Custodians (various locations)
  • Administrative Support Professionals (various locations)

Follow us on social media @hcpsrecruiter and share our employment posts. To find a full list of our available positions, visit hcps.org and click on the sun!

Celebrating National Principals Month in October

National Principals Month honors principals for their significant impact on the success and well-being of our nation’s students. Join us as we celebrate and show appreciation for ALL HCPS principals throughout October.

We would like to highlight our newest HCPS principals in a video series, Five in Five, this month. Acting Supervisor of Leadership Development Audrey Vohs talks with each of our new principals to ask five questions in five minutes so we can get to know them better. Take a moment to hear from Marc Manzo, Principal of North Harford Middle School, and Christian Slattery, Principal of Jarrettsville Elementary School, in the videos linked below. Stay tuned for more new principal recognitions in HCPS 411 Updates this moth!

Meet Marc Manzo, new principal at North Harford Middle School
Meet Christian Slattery , new principal at Jarrettsville Elementary school

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 October honorees! Join us in celebrating our awesome HCPS staff!

We'd also like to give a BIG thank you to our program sponsor, Freedom Federal Credit Union! We are able to provide our honorees with a special treat courtesy of their generosity.

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Voting Window is Open to Name the October 2022 Family Friendly School!

The voting window to name this month's Family Friendly School Award winner is open! There can only be one winning school each month… now is your time to weigh in!

Click here to vote once before 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, October 19, to let us know which nominated school should win the coveted title of “Family Friendly School” and a staff Chick-fil-A luncheon!

As a reminder, if “your” school isn’t in the running this month and you feel it should be, nominate it next month! One winning school will be named each month through May, and schools may win multiple times. Reminders about nominating and voting windows will be shared in the HCPS 411 Update and on the Parent Academy Facebook page throughout the school year.

We look forward to announcing the October winner later this month!

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LAST CALL: Support Services Superstar Award Program

Nominations for the Support Services Superstar Award are being accepted now until TOMORROW, October 14, 2022. APG Federal Credit Union (APGFCU) is the proud sponsor of HCPS Support Services Superstar Awards. All Harford County Public Schools regular support staff employees are eligible for the award. Program information and nomination forms may be downloaded at www.hcps.org.

Questions regarding this information should be directed to Ben Richardson, in Human Resources, at Benjamin.Richardson2@hcps.org or 410-588-5226.

Student Services Standout Award (S.T.A.R. Award)

The Office of Student Services is accepting nominations for the STUDENT SERVICES STANDOUT AWARD (S.T.A.R. AWARD). This award is presented once per semester (biannually) to a nominated member of the student services staff. The nominee must currently be an employee budgeted under Student Services, who is based in a school or Central Office. This would include staff under the offices of School Counseling Services, School Health Services, Psychological Services, or Pupil Personnel Services. Any person, regardless of position or relationship to the nominee, including students, may make the nomination. The nomination form and supporting narrative must be submitted by December 1, 2022. Click here to access the nomination form and the rubric used by the judges and consider nominating someone today!

Questions regarding this information should be directed to:
Kay Malone, Supervisor of School Counseling, at Kay.Malone@hcps.org or 410-588-5251

Real Talk: Magnet Programs

In this Real Talk episode, Mary Beth Stapleton sits down with Mr. Robert Limpert, Supervisor of Magnet and CTE Programs, and Mr. Shomari Zachary, P-TECH Coordinator at Joppatowne High School to provide families an overview of the HCPS Magnet programs.


Diversity 365

Join us as we continue to shine the light on how HCPS celebrates Diversity all year long. 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:

  • ADD/ADHD Awareness
  • Filipino American Heritage
  • German American Heritage
  • Italian American Heritage
  • Polish American Heritage

Please email your celebration pictures and a brief write up regarding the event to Sherron Foster-Moore, Diversity Retention & Recruitment Specialist, at sherron.fostermoore@hcps.org by Wednesday, October 27, 2022. This month’s celebrations will be shared in the November 3rd issue of the HCPS 411 Update.

Last month we celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month. Check out the celebrations from some of our classrooms!

Forest Green Elementary School
Mary Ann Clinton, Principal

At Fountain Green Elementary School (FGES), students celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month in ways as diverse as the Hispanic people. Our first-grade students celebrated the sights and sounds of Hispanic Heritage throughout their day. During morning meetings, they greeted each other with many languages including… Español. Our artists at FGES, learned about other cultures and were inspired by them. Our marvelous musicians inspected instruments from Spain and how they transferred to Mexico. They also learned a Mexican chant called “Bate Bate Chocolate.” ​It is a common hand-game in Mexico which fosters a better understanding of beat and rhythm. ​During morning announcements, students learned that the Disney movie Coco, was inspired by the Mexican holiday “Day of the Dead” and Mexican mariachi music. Students also learned about Puerto Rican composer Lin-Manuel Miranda. They learned about his travels to various parts of Colombia while researching different music from various regions as he created his musical score for an FGES favorite... Encanto.

Special thanks to: Ms. Vignola, Ms. Ward, & Ms. Nandalal

Havre de Grace High School

Brad Spence, Principal

Ms. Deanna Burch’s Advanced Foods (Juniors) and Hospitality Management (Senior) classes planned and prepared recipes inspired by countries found in Latin America. Students made churros, guacamole, quesadillas, empanadas, and elote (Mexican street corn). Here’s two groups of students enjoying their cooking. The smiles say it all.

Academic Tutoring

The Academic Tutoring Program is seeking short-term and long-term tutors for the 2022-2023 school year. 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, as well as Science and Social Studies for the graduation required courses at the high school level. Teachers and paraeducators in any content area may serve as tutors and will be able to select 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 per diem rate.

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


HCEA COVID-19 Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

The Harford County Education Association (HCEA) COVID-19-related MOU, revised on August 30, 2022 between the Board of Education and the HCEA, is available on the Human Resources Staff Relations SharePoint site, or by clicking here.

Questions regarding this information should be directed to Mae Alfree, Ed.D., in Human Resources at Mae.Alfree@hcps.org or 410-588-5226.

Register today: Effective Parenting

Parent Academy, together with the Harford County Local Management Board, is excited to share details about an upcoming free and uplifting workshop. We hope you will join us on TODAY, Thursday, October 13, 7:00 p.m. at Patterson Mill High School (85 Patterson Mill Road, Bel Air, MD 21015) for Effective Parenting: A positive, strength-based approach to raising your child.

This workshop will be presented by Charlie Appelstein, MSW, an internationally prominent youth care specialist and author of three youth care books widely used within his field. Mr. Appelstein will deliver a message of hope and possibility as he covers topics such as:

  • What is strength-based parenting?
  • Helping your child learn a positive, growth mindset
  • Strategies for enhancing your child’s self esteem
  • How to respond instead of reacting to your child
  • And more!

Register for the event here.

We hope you will mark your calendar now to join us at Patterson Mill High School TONIGHT for this awesome event!

Professional Development Announcements

Towson Learning Network – Post-Baccalaureate Certificate, Professional Spanish

See flyer for a new Towson Learning Network program that Towson hope to offer. It is 100% online and is for teachers, administrators, and system staff who want to earn graduate credit and gain oral and written proficiency, cultural competence, and learn about language acquisition to better a diverse population of students, parents, and employees. Applicants will need to have some Spanish proficiency and will complete a quick/free placement test. Towson plans to start the program in Spring 2023. To learn more about the program please join Towson for an informational session on November 15, 2022, at 5:00 p.m. A Zoom link is provided within the flyer.

Goucher – Informational Sessions

Online Information Sessions for Harford County educators:

TODAY, Thursday, October 13, 2022 at 5:00 p.m.

To RSVP, please click here.

Programs offered (cohorts available) – October or January start dates:
Masters of Education (M.Ed.) & Professional Development (PD) Certificate Programs:

  • At-Risk and Diverse Learners
  • Athletic Program Leadership and Administration
  • ESOL for Certified Teachers
  • Literacy Strategies for Content Learning
  • Reading Instruction Concentration
  • Reducing Student, Classroom, and School Disruption
  • School Improvement Leadership Concentration
  • Special Education
  • Teacher as Leader in Technology Concentration

Masters of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.):

  • Dual Elementary (Grades 1-6) and Special Education (Grades 1-8)
  • Dual Secondary with Special Education
  • Elementary Education (Grades 1-6)
  • Elementary Special Education (Grades 1-6)
  • Secondary Education (Grades 6-12)
  • Secondary Special Education (Grades 6-12)

RSVP today or contact Kim Leonard, Graduate Information Specialist, Off-Campus Programs, Phone: 667-444-2410, Email: kleonard@exploregoucher.com directly for more information.

McDaniel College – Lauryn’s Law

McDaniel College is offering the Lauryn’s Law course to school counselors. This course meets the requirements for HB 947 for professional development for school counselors and MSDE certification renewal. Please see flyer for information.

Loyola University - Lauryn's Law

EDGC822.W01 Lauryn's Law (1 Graduate Credit)
February 13 - March 27, 2023
Asynchronous Course
Cost: $350
Admission: Continuing Education Application and MSDE License- Application Deadline February 6, 2023. Registration Deadline February 10, 2023 (students can only register after being accepted)
Please direct any questions to: educationdean1@loyola.edu.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness

The deadline for the Federal Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Limited Waiver is October 31, 2022. This limited waiver allows borrowers to receive credit for past periods of repayment that would not have qualified for PSLF. For more information, visit the US Department of Education's PSLF stakeholder resource page.

All PSLF forms may be sent via email to certification@hcps.org or by interoffice mail to Human Resources/Certification.

New Process for Teacher Certification

MSDE has released The Educator Application and Certification Hub (TEACH). Existing applicants and certificate holders will need to complete a one-time registration by visiting https://certificationhub.msde.maryland.gov. You will be required to upload verification of identification such as a driver’s license or passport. Verification of your identification must be completed before any service or request can be completed. When registering, please ensure your email address is updated. The Certification Department will provide updates and notification to teachers through TEACH as well as your HCPS email. TEACH requires educators to submit an application/request for initial certification, renewal of a certificate, adding an endorsement or name change. This must be done on MSDE TEACH through the educator’s dashboard.

For those who have a Maryland teaching certificate that is expiring DECEMBER 31, 2022; if you have not done so already, please log onto TEACH and request a renewal of your certificate. More information regarding this process can be found in the MSDE TEACH INFORMATION 9-2022 document on SharePoint, Human Resources, Certification, under Certification Forms & Information.

In order to renew certificates in a timely manner, please have your dashboard and request completed by November 1, 2022.

Questions regarding this information should be directed to CJ Harbach, Certification Assistant, or Aretha Young, Certification Coordinator, at Certification@hcps.org or 410-588-5258.

MRSPA Mini-Grant Opportunity

The Maryland Retired School Personnel Association (MRSPA) is offering six (6) Mini-Grants of up to $300 to classroom teachers across Maryland. The grants may be used on special projects or activities that are not funded through the school system or Parent Teacher Organization. Applications and additional information can be found at MRSPA.org. Applications can be submitted from October 1, 2022, through November 1, 2022. Please view MRSPA.org or contact wtwigg@mrspa.org for additional information.

School and Classroom Enrichment Grants From Harford County Education Foundation

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Freedom Federal Credit Union presents How Can I Help My Elderly Parents Manage Their Finances?

My parents are aging, and I believe they can use help in managing their everyday expenses and may eventually need a proxy. How can I best help my parents with their finances? Freedom Federal Credit Union can help!

Click here for more information on supporting elderly family members with their finances.

#HCPShealth Health and Wellness Program Survey

Getting healthy and holistically feeling your best can be fun and easy with help! That's why HCPS wants to launch an employee health and wellness program to help you live healthier and to provide resources to support your overall well-being. Please take a few moments to complete this survey to help us shape this year's program by letting us know which health issues are important to you.

Beneficiary Updates

Help Keep Your Beneficiary Information Up to Date

Suppose you have recently gotten married, welcomed a baby, adopted a child, undergone a divorce, or suffered a death in the family. In that case, it may be time to update your beneficiary(ies). Imagine if your Life Insurance benefits were unintentionally left to someone else. These situations can and do happen. It is essential to keep your beneficiary information up to date by at least reviewing your designated beneficiaries annually.

Beneficiary information can be updated at any time throughout the year through your account at hcps.benelogic.com. To log into your account through Benelogic:

  1. Using a computer with the internet, visit hcps.benelogic.com.
  2. Enter your User ID, which is your HCPS 5-digit Employee ID number.
  3. Enter your password. If you do not know your password, click the "Forgot User ID/Password" link for further assistance.
  4. Click the orange "Sign In" button.
  5. Click on the large green "GO" arrow to start your enrollment.
  6. Once you have reached the end, click the Submit button to finalize your enrollment.
  7. Print a copy of the Enrollment Summary for your records.

Questions? Contact the Benefits Office by email at benefits@hcps.org.

Drive Thru Flu Shot Clinics

Get Your Flu Shot Without Leaving Your Car

HCPS, in partnership with CVS, will be hosting a drive-thru flu shot clinic. Events will be held on various days in school parking lots throughout the county. Employees and their families (ages 3+) are welcome to attend an event to receive their flu shot.

Pre-registration is preferred but not required. To register, click on the school location+ and date you wish to attend. CVS will accept walk-ins at each event listed below if appointment slots are unavailable.

Please be sure to bring your insurance card and identification with you. Flu shots will be billed to your insurance*. Questions? Email the Benefits Office at benefits@hcps.org.

*HCPS medical plans cover flu shots at 100% with no member liability.

+Events will be held at the school location listed per the selected link.

Ready for Your New Fall Fitness Routine with BurnAlong?

Are you looking for a quick workout or a jumpstart to a new fall fitness routine? Check out the BurnAlong playlist, "Monte's Greatest Hits," featuring some of Monte Sanders' most popular BurnAlong classes, along with eight (8) brand new workouts from America's Favorite Trainer. Click here to check out the playlist and get started with a quick workout, or meet Monte Sanders with a quick intro video.

October is for Raising Awareness about Cancer

With nearly two million new cancer diagnoses every year, changes are you or someone you love is navigating treatment, management, and healing. BurnAlong will be hosting live events and some class suggestions to focus on cancer wellness.

Take BurnAlong with You

Join thousands of others on their health and wellness journey by downloading the Mobile App. Available in iOS and Android, take BurnAlong with you by downloading the app today!

What is BurnAlong?

As a reminder, BurnAlong is our health and wellness partner who provides you and your family with access to more than 23,000 live and on-demand online classes from 5,000+ credentialed instructors at no cost to you.

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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 Wellness Announcements: Think Pink!

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

This October, we challenge you to spread awareness of not only the prevalence and impact of breast cancer but also the importance of early detection. To learn more, click here to view CareFirst's October Wellness Newsletter.

October Recipe of the Month: Hulled Barley Vegetable Soup

Few things warm your body and spirits like a steaming bowl of soup. Click here to try this healthy barley vegetable soup for a cozy night.

EAP Webinar: Navigating Your Holidays

Presented by KEPRO Employee Assistance Program

Do the holidays typically leave you worn out and exhausted? Now is the time to reflect on changes you can make as you enter this year's holiday season. This month, learn effective ways to plan, organize, and make the most of your holidays. Click here to learn more.

Date: Available on demand beginning October 18, 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.

Quarterly EAP Employee Newsletter: Balance

Balance, the newsletter provided by KEPRO, our Employee Assistance Program provider, is a newsletter specific to help employees maintain a healthy work-life balance. This quarter's newsletter features how to maximize your potential, manage workplace stress before it starts, self-care, and other helpful tips. Click here to read more.

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

Save the Date: Annual Fall Pre-Retirement Webinar

Through the Maryland State Retirement Agency and the Community College of Baltimore County, Harford County Public Schools announces a pre-retirement webinar for HCPS employees and their spouses. This webinar provides vital retirement information to all members within eight (8) years of retirement, whether normal service or early retirement. Discussion topics include:

  • HCPS Retiree Benefits
  • State Retirement Pension Benefits
  • Legal Consideration
  • Social Security Benefits
  • Financial Planning

This year's pre-retirement session will be held virtually on November 5, 2022, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Watch future HCPS 411 Update newsletters for more information on registering and obtaining a day of event link.

Access Healthcare Anywhere with CloseKnit

Virtual-First Primary Care Practice through CareFirst

CloseKnit is a virtual-first primary care practice that offers preventive, urgent, and mental health services through an easy-to-use app. As a CloseKnit member, you'll receive a dedicated Care Team to manage your health, navigate billing and benefits, and coordinate in-person and specialty care. Chats with your Care Team are FREE, and there are no annual or monthly membership fees.

How to Get Started or Learn More about CloseKnit Health:

1. Visit https://www.closeknithealth.com/register or download the free app using your phone or tablet.

2. Register and create your profile using your CareFirst member ID.

3. Start accessing the care you need.

COVID-19 Breakthrough Leave Survey Link

Employees who have received the primary vaccine series and at least one (1) booster can submit verification of their vaccination status through an online employee survey to be eligible for COVID Breakthrough Leave for the 2022-2023 school year. Individuals who already submitted both their primary vaccine series and booster information during the 2021-2022 school year will not need to complete this survey again. Information collected from the COVID Breakthrough Leave survey will be utilized for the 2022-2023 school year to determine COVID Breakthrough Leave eligibility. The survey can be accessed by clicking here.

The complete MOU specific to your bargaining unit can be found on the Staff Relations SharePoint page. Questions about COVID Breakthrough Leave can be directed to Staff and Labor Relations Office at (410) 588-5311.

Upcoming Webinar Workshop: A Parent's Guide to Kids and Money

For many of us, as children, discussing money was off-limits. Questions were ignored or received vague, incomplete answers. But times have changed. Today, you need to teach your kids good money habits and how to make sound spending, saving, and investing decisions. That is why MetLife is offering HCPS employees the upcoming workshop, A Parent's Guide to Kids and Money: Toddlers to Teen Workshop.

Date: Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Time: 5:00 – 6:00 p.m.

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!

Shout Out!

"I wanted to give a shout out to Pam Reed for being a supportive department chairperson. She was very supportive and encouraging to me during the planning of our department community based instruction trip."

~ Rachel Otremba, Special Education Teacher, Harford Academy

"Kierra Palmer at Aberdeen High School has stepped easily into her new role here. She is great with students and staff alike. She supports us all in even the most trying situations with calmness and firmness. We're lucky to have her!"

~Kara DeFord, School Nurse, Aberdeen High School

Welcome to HCPS!

Please join us in giving a warm welcome to the following new members of the HCPS family!

  • Karen Blum, Inclusion Helper, Havre de Grace High School
  • Amy Burns, School Bus Attendant, Transportation
  • Taconnis Crawley, Inclusion Helper, Edgewood Elementary School
  • Faith Desnoyer, Custodian I - Shift 2, Forest Lakes Elementary School
  • Emma Morrison, Inclusion Helper, Bel Air Middle School
  • Symone Parker, Inclusion Helper, Havre de Grace Middle School
  • Melissa Ringley, Inclusion Helper, Edgewood Middle School
  • Duncan Rogers, Custodian I - Shift I, Edgewood High School
  • Melissa Russell, Inclusion Helper, Riverside Elementary School
  • Sean Simmons, Food and Nutrition Services Worker, Bel Air High School
  • Britney Simpson, School Bus Attendant, Transportation
  • Kevin Stinson, Inclusion Helper, Magnolia Elementary School
  • Ediliza Toledo, Paraeducator, Deerfield Elementary School

Office of Communications and Family Outreach

Editor: Lindsay Bilodeau, Innovation 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.