HCPS 411 Update

September 15, 2021

COVID-19 Status and Updates

Today’s Harford County COVID-19 positivity metrics are 6.10% positivity and 18.01 cases per 100,000 residents. This information is updated daily at 10:00 a.m. by the Harford County Health Department here.

The HCPS operational status currently reflects consistent positivity of 5%.

As a reminder, FAQ documents have been created for employees. NEWLY ADDED to the FAQs are Leave and Benefits questions. The school-based employee FAQ can be found here, and the central office employee FAQ can be found here. These documents, and the parent/guardian FAQ are being updated as HCPS recovery efforts evolve.

COVID-19-Related Reporting

If you are a school-based employee who is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, please contact your school nurse immediately for further guidance on isolation or quarantine requirements.

If you are a non-school based employee who is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, please contact the Human Resources office at covidreporting@hcps.org for further guidance on isolation or quarantine requirements.

All questions regarding leave can be directed to covidreporting@hcps.org.

HCPS Back to School 2021

Thank you to those who shared photos as HCPS kicks off the 2021-2022 school year!
HCPS Back to School 2021

Monthly Minute Teams LIVE Link

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Join Dr. Bulson next Thursday, September 23, at 12:15 p.m. by clicking here.

Vote NOW for September's Family Friendly School Award Winner!

As you know, September is the inaugural month of the Family Friendly School Award program. We are thrilled to share with you that each one of our 54 schools was nominated at least once – with many schools receiving multiple nominations – for this month’s award! What a heartwarming way to start the new school year! Although, it is no surprise to us to hear that the staff members in our schools are working intentionally and tirelessly to welcome and engage all families.

There can only be one winning school each month, and NOW is your time to weigh in! Many of you have children, grandchildren, family, or friends currently attending one of our schools, or have worked closely with a school and had a positive experience. Between now and 11:59 p.m. this Friday, September 17, click here to vote once to let us know which school should win the coveted title of “Family Friendly School” and a staff Chick-fil-A luncheon!

We can’t wait to announce the September winner later this month!

As a reminder, if your school doesn’t win this month – or even if it does! – nominate it again 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 HCPS and Parent Academy Facebook pages throughout the school year.

We look forward to celebrating with our schools this year as we remain #HCPStogether.

Balancing Enrollment Virtual Public Forums

Attending a Superintendent’s Virtual Public Forum on Balancing Enrollment? Don’t forget to register!

The virtual public input forums will take place via Zoom from 6:00-8:00 p.m. on the dates below. Please note, registration for an event will close 48 hours prior to the event date.

It is suggested the public participate in the forum associated with your secondary attendance area; however, participants are not required to attend the meeting with their attendance area listed. You may address any attendance area at any of the forums listed.

As a reminder, the Superintendent’s draft recommendations, boundary maps, and map books associated with the boundary adjustments being proposed, are available on the Balancing Enrollment page on hcps.org.

Academic Tutoring

The Academic Tutoring Program will be running for the 2021-2022 school year. We are looking for short-term (“on call”) and long-term tutors. 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. We are expanding the program to tutoring students 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 per diem rate.

If you are interested in serving as a tutor, please complete this survey form: https://survey.hcps.org/rws5.pl?FORM=Fall2021TutorRegistration.

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

Harford Glen Student Volunteer Counselor Information

The Harford Glen volunteer counselor application is now 100% online. When students submit their applications, an email from webmaster@hcps.org will automatically be sent to their parents/guardians, school counselors, and all their teachers. The email will include the session(s) that the students chose. This will streamline the process and alert teachers and school counselors right away when their students decide to volunteer.

Until further notice, the Harford Glen 5th grade program will be an extended day experience. Students in grades 10, 11, and 12 may volunteer to serve as counselors; they would need to arrive at Harford Glen at 8:00 a.m. and will be dismissed at 6:15 p.m. They will need to arrange their own transportation to and from Harford Glen.

The link to the online application will be posted on HCPS.org and the Harford Glen website:


Instructional Technology Updates

In case you missed it, please click here to access important Instructional Technology updates as you begin the new school year. Keep an eye out for the bi-weekly Digital Teaching & Learning newsletter to resume soon.

Changes to the Submission Process for Certification and Tuition Reimbursement Requests

Effective October 1, 2021, all transcripts and or tuition reimbursement documentation should be electronically submitted to transcripts@hcps.org.

Electronic transcripts submitted directly from the college/university are preferred. If you cannot obtain an electronic transcript, a scanned copy, including the envelope, may be emailed in place of the electronic submission. Transcripts should be sent as a separate document from all tuition reimbursement forms.


Tuition reimbursement requests, to include:

  • An official transcript,
  • The Partial Reimbursement Request form which aligns with your union, and
  • An itemized receipt indicating payment method(s) and amount(s).

Documentation must be submitted via one of the above methods within 90 days of the course completion date. Please do not send incomplete requests; all documentation should be submitted collectively when possible (except for official transcripts when emailed directly from the college/university/transcript service).

Tuition Reimbursement Questions: benefits@hcps.org

Certification Questions: certification@hcps.org

Being Present: Switch on to Being More Present

Presented by KEPRO Employee Assistance Program (EAP)

The September KEPRO EAP communication resources are here! This online webinar will help you with discovering the key to being more present and actively taking the time to digitally disconnect to spend quality time with those around you. Click here for more tips on how to do better at being present.

Date: Available on demand beginning September 21, 2021

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 EAP 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.

Call KEPRO toll free at (866) 795-5701 to visit their website online at www.EAPhelplink.com.

Your Wellness Program is Here!

Improving your health just got easier! Harford County Public Schools has partnered with CareFirst to bring a new wellness program to all HCPS employees that puts the power of health in your hands. Access the program’s tools, resources, and personalized recommendations whenever and wherever you want – all tailored to help you live your healthiest life. Available through the program: RealAge Test, Personalized Timeline, Trackers, Challenges, Health Profile and Health Coaching, Weight Management Programs, and Financial Well-being.

This program is available to all employees regardless of enrollment in the medical plan. Be sure to look for upcoming challenges, programs, and events promoted in future HCPS 411 Update newsletters.

Click here to get started!

Get Started with BurnAlong

BurnAlong is right by your side with a ton of great programming to keep you healthy, well, and fit. First off, a brand new BurnAlong partner, LivFitCo, is now offering upbeat cycling, HIIT, Barre, and breathing practice classes on the platform. Check them out!

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 complementary 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.

CLICK HERE to watch this quick two-minute video to help get started with your online member portal.

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 who are within eight (8) years of retirement, whether it is 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 once again be held virtually on November 6, 2021. Check future HCPS 411 Update newsletters for more information, including session times, agendas, and how to register.

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 9+) are welcome to attend an event to receive their flu shot.

Pre-registrations is preferred, but not required. To register, click on the school location+ and date you wish to attend.

Please be sure to bring your insurance card and identification with you. Flu shots will be billed to your insurance*. Be sure to watch for additional dates and times that will be announced throughout September and October.

Questions? Email the Benefits Office at benefits@hcps.org.

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

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

Shout Outs!

"A big Shout Out to the café staff at Edgewood Middle...in particular Ms. Jamie Schuster and Ms. Kathy Carroll for all their thoughtful and care-filled work to keep our students with food allergies satiated and safe.

And, a huge Shout Out to Ms. Sara Markie and Ms. Maria Batory, our School Counselor and trusty Administrative Assistant, who handled the first week of school and navigated many difficulties with aplomb and grace. They are truly professionals!"

-Barbara Polack, BSN, RN, Nationally Certified School Nurse, Edgewood Middle School

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.