HCPS 411 Update

November 17, 2022


Many of our positions are filled by word of mouth by our employees. Help us share our employment needs!

  • School Safety Liaison – Floater and Bel Air Middle School
  • Administrative Support Assistant, 12 Month – Southampton Middle School
  • Special Education Teacher – Church Creek Elementary School and Edgewood Middle School
  • English Teacher – Edgewood Middle School and Joppatowne High School

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!

Employee Salary Letters Available

Annual salary letters for all HCPS employees are available for review through Employee Self Service (ESS). For security purposes, ESS can only be accessed from an HCPS device or through HCPS VPN. For issues accessing ESS, please review the Employee Self Service Overview and Reference information or contact the Help Desk at 410-588-5242 for assistance. Upon clicking on “My Salary Letters” within ESS, you will be prompted to enter a password so that you can receive future salary letters via email.

  1. ESS Login: Employee Self Service (ESS)
  2. ESS Instructions: Employee Self Service Overview and Reference

Employees who require salary verifications for financing or other purposes may refer to The Work Number® to obtain automated employment and income information.

Employees who do not remember their network username and password must contact User Support at 410-588-5242.

If you receive your Salary Letter by email but do not remember your password to view the document, you will need to login to Lawson ESS, go to My Delivery Settings, and Select “I Forgot My PDF Password.” This password is only required to view the emailed version of the Salary Letter; a password is not required to view the document directly from ESS.

Questions regarding this information should be directed to hris@hcps.org or 410-588-5225.

Early Notification of Separation Incentive

In an effort to assist HCPS with forecasting budget savings and project staffing needs for FY 2023-2024, an Early Notification of Separation Incentive is currently offered to employees. A memorandum of understanding has been executed with each collective bargaining unit and includes the following information:

  • Incentive. HCPS is offering a one-time payment of $500 for employees who provide notification on or before Tuesday, January 31, 2023, of their intent to separate from employment with an effective date of separation of Tuesday, February 28, 2023 through and inclusive of Friday, June 30, 2023. Written notification of intent to separate must be received in the Human Resources Office no later than 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, January 31, 2023. An email including the signed letter of intent to separate is also acceptable. Send email to Ms. Lori Hatfield, Administrative Support Coordinator, at Lori.Hatfield@hcps.org.

  • Eligibility.
    1. Separations pertaining to this incentive are limited to separations resulting from retirement or resignation.
    2. The early notification incentive does not apply to probationary employees.
    3. An employee must be in good standing on the date of his/her submission of intent to separate from employment through the date of his/her separation. Good standing means that the employee has no disciplinary investigation/action pending against the employee.
    4. If the employee’s separation from employment will result in a breach of his/her teacher contract, he or she is not eligible for the early notification incentive.
    5. Any staff member who, prior to the execution of this MOU, provided written notification to the Human Resources department of his/her intent to separate effective Tuesday, February 28, 2023 through and inclusive of Friday, June 30, 2023, will be eligible for the early notification incentive.

  • Payment. The payment for early notification provided pursuant to this MOU shall be issued on July 21, 2023 or with final reconciliation check, if earlier. HCPS reserves the right to deduct from the $500 incentive payment any amount owed by the employee to HCPS, at time of separation.

The full memorandum of understanding regarding this incentive can be found on the Human Resources SharePoint page or by clicking here. Questions regarding this information should be directed to C. Mae Alfree, Ed.D., Director of Staff and Labor Relations, at Mae.Alfree@hcps.org or 410-588-5226.

New Process for Teacher Certification

All certificated staff will now have to request initial certificates and changes to their existing certificate through the TEACH system - https://certificationhub.msde.maryland.gov.

Directions for requesting an initial certificate, a certification renewal, and/or an endorsement to your current certificate can be found on the Certification site in SharePoint. Please see links below:

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.

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.

*Administrators interested in an in-person or virtual presentation on the TEACH system for their staff should contact the Office of Certification.

Tips and Tricks for Resumes in 2022

  1. Highlight relevant skills and experience.
    You should use a different resume for every job you apply for. Your resume should be tailored to the specific job you are applying for.
  2. Ditch the objective statement.
    Objective statements should be used when making a career change or transition.
  3. Use keywords.
    Using keywords from the job description gives your resume a better chance of being noticed in applicant tracking systems

If you are looking to transition or advance within HCPS and would like more resume advice, please email maranda.scott@hcps.org.

Mark your Calendar!

Resume Development Workshop

When: Wednesday, January 18, 2023, at 4:00 p.m.

Where: Join Via Teams (Meeting Link will be Provided closer to Workshop Date)

Blueprint for Maryland’s Future Governance Updates

  • Blueprint Draft Materials: The Accountability and Implementation Board (AIB) and Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) have released all Blueprint draft materials for the public to review:
    1. AIB Draft Blueprint Comprehensive Implementation Plan
    2. MSDE/AIB draft Initial Implementation Plan template
    3. MSDE/AIB draft Criteria for Success

Blueprint North Star Committee Updates

  • On November 10th, Harford County Public Schools (HCPS) and Harford Community College (HCC) announced that eligible students who participate in Dual Enrollment courses, including those who are currently enrolled, will no longer be charged the cost of tuition, fees, and textbooks. Based on recent guidance from the Maryland State Department of Education regarding the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future legislation, HCPS will now pay tuition, consolidated fees, direct fees, and textbook costs for all eligible students. This change takes effect immediately for all students enrolled for the 2022-2023 school year and includes courses earning college credit as well as for specific noncredit courses through Maryland Leads, called the Harford Investment Program. Full press release.

    Online resources are now updated on the SEPG in support of the change to dual enrollment.

  • On November 14th, an HCPS team presented to the Board of Education with a proposal to shift graduation requirements, so that HCPS can align with the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future and provide more opportunities for students.

  • The Blueprint North Star Sub-committee is excited to share an innovative tool created to both meet a Blueprint requirement about measuring students “on-track” progress towards graduation and meet HCPS North Star goals for college and career readiness. The team shares this tool, the “Early Warning Indicator,” in this quick (3 minutes) video snapshot: https://youtu.be/5bMQBfi2T3k

The HCPS Maryland Leads Grant

The Maryland State Department of Education launched a new grant initiative to support school systems in targeted strategy areas utilizing federal funds to overcome the learning loss resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, accelerate student learning to narrow opportunity and achievement gaps, and provide more targeted support for historically underserved students and their communities. HCPS is excited for approvals and partnerships that are now in place for the following strategies:

  • Grow Your Own Staff- Led by Talent Pathways Project Manager Vicki Jones, this strategy requires school districts to launch initiatives to grow the pathways of teachers and other professional staff.
  • Staff - Support & Retention – Led by Supervisor of Teacher Preparation and Professional Development Rebecca Spencer, this strategy focuses on retention, coaching, and supporting National Board Certification hopefuls.
  • Reimagining the Use of Time Led by Director of Middle School Innovation Natalie Holloway, this strategy supports the education services innovation teams through consultation about restructuring of the school day and to support the development of the middle school career explorations and pathways programming.
  • Innovative School Models/ Harford Investment Program – Led by Supervisor of Magnet and CTE Programs Curriculum and Assessment Rob Limpert, this strategy focuses on providing career and technical education while expanding apprentice opportunities to students. Through this model, students will have access to a program that will equip them with career readiness, exploration, and work-based learning while still in high school.
  • Transforming Neighborhoods – Led by Grants Specialist Roclande White and Executive Director of Student Support Services Buck Hennigan, this strategy maximizes the community schools’ model to go beyond academics to serve students and their families. Through this grant, four more schools became Community Schools: Riverside Elementary School, Edgewood Middle School, Magnolia Middle School, and Joppatowne High School.

New Principal Toolkit Video

Standard 2: Communicate Effectively

Bel Air High School Principal Rob Deleva, along with his PACE Liaisons Andrew Kassouf and Liz Jones, discuss how to proactively engage in timely two-way communication with families, including an innovative way to connect with parents and students through the annual fall Open House event.

Standard 2: Communicate Effectively

Congratulations to This Month's Limelight Honorees!

Congratulations to all of the November honorees highlighted below! And a special thank you to this month's sponsor, APGFCU. In addition to their certificate, nomination letter, and car magnet, the following lucky winners chosen by random draw received prizes from APGFCU:

Grand-prize winner - $50 gift card, frozen turkey, and pie:

  • Archangel Torres, Riverside Elementary School

Holiday pie winners:

  • Jon Stefanides, Joppatowne High School
  • Wendy Nesbitt, Darlington Elementary School
  • Cynthia Moore, Red Pump Elementary School
  • Rachel Daugherty, Aberdeen High School
  • Geraldine “Gee” McComas, Harford Academy
  • Tammy Martin, Bel Air Elementary School
  • Ashley Lewis, Homestead/Wakefield Elementary School
  • Buck Pugh, Edgewood Middle School
  • Andrew VanDorick, Havre de Grace Elementary School
  • Michelle McGuire, Old Post Road Elementary School
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Congratulations to Our 2022 Support Services Superstars!

  • Sonia Evans-Wesley, Inclusion Helper, Hickory Elementary School
  • Margaret “Maggie” Henninger, Administrative Support Specialist – School Based, Harford Technical High School
  • Sharon Jakelski, Administration Support Specialist – School Based, Emmorton Elementary School
  • Traci Kivinski, Paraeducator – Special Education, Joppatowne Elementary School
  • Jeanette “Jay” Kline, Paraeducator – Special Education, Patterson Mill High School
  • Michael “Mike” LaMartina, Network Administrator, OTIS
  • Kimberly Noll, Administration Support Coordinator – Student Support Services
  • Diana Rasinski, Administrative Support Coordinator – Legal Services
  • Mary Richardson, Paraeducator – Special Education, C. Milton Wright High School
  • Shanita Richardson, Paraeducator – Special Education, Harford Academy
  • Laura Rodney, Administration Support Assistant – School-Based, Church Creek Elementary School
  • Lisa Santome, Satellite Kitchen Assistant, Prospect Mill Elementary School
  • Greg Testerman, Custodian II, Shift 1, North Harford Middle School
  • Wendy Thomas, Paraeducator, Bel Air Elementary School
  • Ramona Tolbert, Paraeducator – Special Education, Edgewood Middle School
  • Ethan Wallace, Paraeducator – Special Education, Aberdeen High School
  • Sheree White, Paraeducator, North Bend Elementary School

This employee recognition program is an opportunity for HCPS stakeholders to recognize support services employees. Nominations were accepted during September/October 2022. Then a panel of judges reviewed all nominations submitted and identified a list of finalists to recommend to the Superintendent of Schools. The winners were notified during a surprise office visit and check presentation on November 16, 2022 – Education Support Professionals Day.

APG Federal Credit Union (APGFCU) is the proud financial sponsor of HCPS Support Services Superstar Awards. The 17 award recipients received $250 each, and their supervisors were given $100 to host a celebration for the recipient at their work location.

APGFCU understands that teachers and school staff are vitally important to the communities they serve. So, they make it a priority to support them. Their exclusive U Educate Member Rewards Program* can help educators and support services staff save money through specialized products, discounts, preferred rates and reduced fees. See the APGFCU website for a complete list of rewards. APGFCU U-Educate Program

The awards were based on nominated employees demonstrating at least one of the following criteria:

  • Exemplary performance, outstanding achievements, or accomplishments.
  • Exemplary role model to include outstanding customer service, collaboration, and positive attitude.
  • Cost savings or ideas that contribute to increased efficiency.
  • Design and implementation of new systems or processes.

All HCPS regular support staff employees (clerical support, instructional Support, central office support, operational support, etc.) who have successfully completed one year of continuous service with the organization are eligible for the annual award.

5x Stronger Hosts Campfire Conversations

The 2021 Teacher of the Year finalists, collectively known as 5x Stronger, held a Campfire Conversations event at Harford Glen Environmental Education Center on Monday, November 7, 2022. All 2021-2022 Teacher Tour honorees were invited to attend this peer-to-peer event to promote and foster lasting professional connections. This informal event celebrated collaboration, community building, and idea sharing amongst some of Harford County’s greatest educators. Attendees shared stories, swapped strategies, and even participated in fun escape room style activities to work together and problem solve in creative, innovative ways! Thank you to Freedom Federal Credit Union for sponsoring this event, providing dinner and other small goodies for our attendees!

5x Stronger is also excited to announce that the Teacher Tour will be kicking off once again in January 2023! Each month, from January to May, 5x Stronger will announce a specific area of focus and will seek nominations for teachers who are exhibiting exemplary aspects of that area. Is there a teacher in your school who goes above and beyond to inspire their peers and celebrate learning in their classroom? They could be our next Teacher Tour honoree! The January Teacher Tour announcement will be published in a future HCPS 411 Update.

Professional Development Announcements

University of Maryland College of Education - Online TESOL Certificate Program

The University of Maryland College of Education offers an online TESOL certificate program. The program consists of four, three-credit courses, which are delivered in six-week sessions. The program is designed for anyone interested in TESOL and can be completed in as little as one year.

Application Deadlines:

  • Spring 2023: January 13, 2023
  • Summer I 2023: May 16, 2023
  • Summer II 2023: June 26, 2023
  • Fall 2023: August 10, 2023

Want to learn more about the program? The University of Maryland College of Education is hosting an information session on November 17 from 3:00 to 3:30 p.m. Join virtually:

Meeting ID: 982 6304 7729

Questions? Please email Sarah C.K. Moore at sckmoore@umd.edu.

Save the Date! 2023 Ripken Event for Mental Health Awareness Month

The Harford County Local Behavioral Health Authority would like to invite you to save the date for the 2023 Your Mind Matters: Family Wellness Night event! Please see the video below.

2023 Family Wellness Night- SAVE THE DATE!

Health for the Holidays

Looking for a way to relieve holiday stress and maintain balance? Picture yourself having a healthier, happier holiday season by joining us in Health for the Holidays, a lighthearted online wellness program. As you record daily health behaviors, you paint a winter scene – brushing on more color and detail – while earning inches of snow. The more you do, the more your painting comes to life and the more snow builds up, reinforcing your healthy holiday accomplishments. Every week there’s a new scene – with surprises that inspire you to keep at it until you finish each painting. Your goal is to record daily exercise, healthy eating, and special Gift Box behaviors (there’s a new one each day). You add an inch of snow for each of these activities… piling up to 21 inches a week. And you complete a painting by recording activities 5 or more days a week. Aim to accumulate 60 total inches of snow and finish 4 paintings during the 4-week campaign. Participants can log their daily activity on a computer or on their phone using the Health for the Holidays app! You can even connect a tracking device to record your daily steps! The participant with the most points at the end of the 4-week program will receive a grand prize, courtesy of our partners at CareFirst.

Don’t miss out on the perfect way to wrap up the year feeling more energetic and resilient. Click here to view a brief promotional video for the program. This program is available to all HCPS employees, free of charge.

Registration is NOW OPEN and the program will begin on Monday, November 21, 2022! Click here to register!

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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:

National Native 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 Monday, November 28, 2022. This month’s celebrations will be shared in the December 1 issue of the HCPS 411 Update.

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.

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:


EAP Webinar: Working Caregivers – The Sandwich Generation

Presented by KEPRO Employee Assistance Program

Are you caring for an older parent in addition to raising your child or financially supporting a grown child? If so, you are part of the sandwich generation, the 47% of adults nationwide, ages 40-59, who face multiple responsibilities and competing demands as they support older and younger family members. This session will help participants to find practical and effective strategies to balance your work and personal life as the sandwich generation. Click here to learn more.

Date: Available on demand beginning November 22, 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, seven days per week toll-free at (866) 795-5701 to visit their website online at www.EAPhelplink.com.

Ready for Your New Fall Fitness Routine with BurnAlong?

What's Cooking with B? Soup and Sweets: It's What's for Dinner

Fall is in full swing, and it's time to get your soup ladles out. This month, BurnAlong is bringing you a savory vegetarian twist on a classic, and a surprisingly sweet recipe.

  • Vegetarian Chickenpea Noodle Soup: Looking for a new take on chicken noodle soup? Try out a vegetarian-friendly version of chicken noodle soup, where you still get your protein!
  • Carrot Cake Muffins: Have a sweet tooth? Try out these carrot cake muffins for a sweet surprise!

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.

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!

#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 a health and wellness program to help you live healthier and to provide resources to support your overall well-being while making it a program that works for employees. If you haven't done so already, please take a few moments to click the link below to complete the survey to help us shape this year's program by letting us know which health issues are important to you so that we may develop a program that meets the needs of all staff.

Click here to complete the survey.

CareFirst Wellness Announcements: National Diabetes Awareness

November is National Diabetes Awareness Month

Did you know more than 237 million people in the United States live with diabetes and 96 million adults with prediabetes (National Diabetes Statistics Report | Diabetes | CDC)? National Diabetes Awareness Month is an important health observance promoted each November to raise awareness and sound the alarm on the growing diabetes epidemic. To learn more, click here to view CareFirst's November Wellness Newsletter.

CareFirst One-on-One Health Coaching

You have access to personal health coaching as part of your health coverage. To learn more about the coaching program, or to join, call (877) 260-3253 and press option 7. You may also receive a call inviting you to participate. While not mandatory, we encourage you to participate in this voluntary and confidential phone-based program to help you achieve your best possible health. You can leave the program at any time. Click here to learn more.

October Recipe of the Month: Salmon with Spinach

Salmon isn't just a delicious fish. It is also full of healthy fats that are good for your heart. Click here to try this healthy as you relax on a night in with this tasty recipe perfect for one.

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.

Veterans Day Celebrated at CMW

Thank you to Keri Freburger, Fine Art Prep., Drawing & Painting, and Photography teacher at C. Milton Wright High School, for sharing that the school's Daily Skills Art Class (AKA "Art Exploration" class) celebrated Veterans Day by creating star wreaths and giving certificates to staff members and family members who served in the military.
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Shout Outs!

"I want to take a moment to recognize the amazing women I work alongside each week. Katrina Ruby and Jill Towner are both exemplary employees, and I am so lucky to have them on my team! The care they put into their jobs is to be admired. It is apparent that they want the very best for our students here at Hall's. Their initiative, creativity and drive are unending. Thank you both for all that you do!"

-Ashely Thrasher, Media Specialist, Hall's Cross Roads Elementary School

Welcome to HCPS!

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

  • Laura Almond, Paraeducator, Hickory Elementary School
  • Deborah Androsky, School Bus Attendant, Transportation Department
  • Mindy Bloom, Behavior Intervention Coach, Student Services Department
  • Kathlyn Cage, Custodian I - Shift 2, Hall's Cross Roads Elementary School
  • Leshay Campbell, Custodian II - Shift 2, Deerfield Elementary School
  • Virginia Durham, Inclusion Helper, Riverside Elementary School
  • Carissa Genco, Paraeducator, Joppatowne Elementary School
  • Latissa Green, Inclusion Helper, Edgewood Elementary School
  • John Kozloski, Custodian II - Shift 2, Edgewood Elementary School
  • Tanya Svoboda, School Safety Liaison, Office of Safety and Security
  • Sharon Swinson Lewis, Paraeducator, Old Post Road Elementary School
  • Janet White, School Bus Attendant, Transportation Department
  • Letrina Wiggins, Inclusion Helper, Abingdon 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.