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School News

June 13, 2017

Chevy-Chase-LeadChevy Chase Elementary School celebrated its 100th anniversary with a fun-filled afternoon of historical memories, games and music. There were tents of historical information, activities and games for each decade. There was a variety of entertainment for every age—checkers, chess, cornhole, volleyball and badminton, among others. There was a scavenger hunt, arts and crafts and a photography exhibit. The event also included tours of the school, poetry readings and song performances.


Held June 10, CheetahFest was the culminating event of months’ worth of celebrations in anticipation of the 100th anniversary. Each month, students dressed in period clothing, starting with 1917. The school worked with the Chevy Chase Historical Society to collect artifacts of the school’s past. They dug up class pictures, postcards, report cards and curriculum guides from the 1940s.


In 1917, the county opened its first official school building, a two-story art-deco inspired brick structure called the Chevy Chase School. Eventually, the high school students were relocated to regional schools, so that the school served first through seventh graders. In 1936, the school expanded by adding another brick building. The school underwent a renovation in the 1970s and, again in 2000, when the PTA, Montgomery County, and the Land Company funded the most recent renovation.

chevy chase teachers

Some fun facts:

  • Chevy Chase Elementary was the first school in the county to hire a secretary.
  • The lunchroom in 1917 was on the basement level. No hot lunches were served, but students could purchase milk, juice and snacks.
  • Some of the organized activities in the school’s early days were softball, dodgeball and track.
  • From 1939 until 1965, the PTA ran the school library. It was the first library in a county elementary school.
  • Parents were very active during the school year, specifically mothers: In the 1940s, mothers ran a health program, music program, the library and served as playground monitors.

Two Blair Students Given Top Ratings as Composers

Steven Qu

Steven Qu

Montgomery Blair High School students Steven Qu and Michael Yin have been award top ratings in the 2017 Young Composers Project. Qu received an excellent rating for his string ensemble piece, The Joyful Serenade. Yin received a superior rating for his string work, Iyauna Tomorrow. Both students were guided in their work by Blair instrumental teacher Michelle Roberts. These young composers received suggestions and compliments from the judges that will inform their future composing endeavors.

Michael Yin

Michael Yin

Their works will be presented at the Maryland Music Educators’ fall in-service conference in October.

The Young Composers Project is designed to encourage and enhance the instructional experiences of students and music educators through providing professional critiques, enhanced recognition, and selected presentations for the ongoing creative work of students in Maryland schools.

You can hear the works below.

The Joyful Serenade by Steven Qu, performed by the Blair High School Chamber Orchestra.

Iyauna Tomorrow by Michael Yin performed by the Blair High School Symphonic Orchestra. Other links here, here and here.

Outdoor Education Comes to Life for Clarksburg Elementary Students

BioBlitz 004Sixty students from Clarksburg Elementary School participated in a BioBlitz June 7. During a BioBlitz, members of the community and scientists work together to collect data on the diversity of living things in a specified area.

BioBlitz 037

Led by local experts from MCPS, the Montgomery County Department of

Environmental Protection, county parks, and the Audubon Naturalist Society, Clarksburg students explored an aquatic station for fish and macroinvertebrates and then a terrestrial station for plants, mammals and other terrestrial animals.

Junior Achievement Offers Messages of Financial Literacy and Enterpreneurship to Woodlin Students

On June 9, Woodlin Elementary School held “JA in a Day,” an opportunity to engage parents and teachers in a day-long activity to teach elementary students about financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship. This is the third year the event is being held at Woodlin, thanks to Junior Achievement (JA) of Greater Washington and support from the school PTA.

Volunteers and classroom teachers provided age-appropriate instruction to students in kindergarten through fifth grade on topics such as needs and wants, money choices, and jobs and careers. Volunteers led games, small projects and discussions to help students think about money, education, careers and their community.

The partnership was initiated three years ago when a Woodlin parent introduced “JA in a Day” to the principal Shoua Moua. “I partnered with JA at schools in Minnesota where I worked in the past, so I was very familiar with JA’s programs and their benefits,” said Moua. “One difference here is that Woodlin parents are so highly engaged.” Jeff Allum, co-coordinator of this year’s event, agreed. “As a parent, I always enjoy spending time with my son in the classroom. But this is a particularly important topic, and I am especially glad that so many other parents found the time to help.”

Junior Achievement of Greater Washington served more than 65,000 students, 5,000 volunteers, and 400 organizations in the Washington area during the 2015-16 school year. The organization served nearly 14,000 students in Montgomery County.

Four High School Students Win $50,000 in Scholarships from Essay Contest

An MCPS senior has won the grand prize, and three other students have been selected as winners in the 2016 Junior Achievement Essay competition.

Summer Oh, a senior at Richard Montgomery High School, is the grand prize winner in the contest, winning a $20,000 scholarship. John Merlo-Coyne, a senior at Montgomery Blair High School, won first place; Josephine Brane-Wright, a junior at Montgomery Blair, placed second; and Samuel Norman, a junior at Richard Montgomery High School, earned third place. These three students each won $10,000 scholarships. Additionally, Richard Montgomery High School won the Maryland award for having the most eligible applicants. Richard Montgomery will receive a $6,000 grant.

The competition, coordinated by Junior Achievement of Greater Washington, asked high school students from Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C. to compete for scholarships by writing an essay in response to the following question: “George Washington or Dr. Dre: Who would you consider a great entrepreneur and why?”

The competition is sponsored by David M. Rubenstein, co-founder and co-CEO of The Carlyle Group, a global alternative asset manager based in Washington, DC.

Read the essays.

Strathmore Elementary School Installs Mosaic Mural


Strathmore Elementary School has completed the installation of a large scale glass mosaic mural on the exterior of its building. Every student and many staff members took part in creating the artwork.

The school began planning for the project at the beginning of the school year. Preliminary design meetings were held with local mosaic artist Ali Mirsky, who agreed to work with the school to create the artwork. The mural measures 6 feet tall by 13 feet wide. Students came up with symbols to represent the school motto, “Dream Big, Work Hard.” Using many of the student ideas, Strathmore art teacher Sara Foraker created a design on paper.

The mural was created on six separate panels that were hung together to create the large finished piece. Production began in the art classroom with the students on April 27. Mirsky visited the school to teach each class how to handle the glass and create the mosaic, and students continued working during art class for three weeks. A grouting party was held on May 31 with students and staff members, and the finished mural was installed on June 6.

MCPS Celebrates Digital Citizenship Initiative

Media specialists from several middle schools gathered at Carver Educational Services Center in Rockville to celebrate completing the first year of an initiative that incorporates digital citizenship education in their schools. The curriculum, which covers issues such as privacy, cyberbullying, internet safety and other digital dilemmas, is made possible through a three-year partnership with Common Sense Education and a generous grant from the Delaney Family Fund.

Loiederman, Wheaton Students Create Bookmarks that Promote Literacy, Cultural Diversity

School News ThreeBookmarks

These bookmarks were created by Saloni Singh of A. Mario Loiederman Middle School, and Kriscia Flores and Frances Lowery, both of Wheaton High School.

Twenty-four students from A. Mario Loiederman Middle School and Wheaton High School took part in an after-school program that created multicultural bookmarks.

Students worked with teaching artist Leila Cabib to create bookmarks that promote literacy and reflect the cultural diversity of Montgomery County. Students illustrated quotations about reading, books and libraries. Many of the bookmarks are bilingual: in English and Spanish, Chinese, Hindi, Nepali, Tagalog and Hebrew. The back of each bookmark lists the resources of Montgomery County Public Libraries, which is distributing the printed bookmarks to all of its

branches. The students’ original artwork will be on display at the Wheaton Interim Library, 2400 Arcola Avenue, through June 30.

Magruder Cluster Hosts First Health and Wellness Expo

magruder health fair

The Col. Zadok Magruder Cluster presented a Health and Wellness Expo on May 16 at Redland Middle School. The focus of the event was to expand knowledge about alternatives to traditional medicine and to promote health and wellness. The program began with keynote speaker, Darryl Haley, a former professional football player, Ironman Triathlon competitor, and host of WHUR Radio’s Fitness Fridays. Haley gave a motivational talk about his childhood in California and how he turned to football to better himself and turn his life around. The event also featured panelists who answered questions on health, nutrition, exercise, mental health and wellness. Participants also toured exhibits to learn about massage, acupuncture, yoga, tai chi, karate, kickboxing, meditation and relaxation, behavioral therapy and music therapy.


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