Some update on JumpStart program

Since the superintendent proposed to use JumpStart to alleviate the high School overcrowding problem in his 2018 HCPSS School Redistricting proposal (, more details were discussed. The following is shared from somebody who attended Thursday night’s BOE meeting.


Many details about the JumpStart Program has been shared by the HCPSS staff at the BOE work session yesterday. Here is my quick summary FYI:

1. Tuition will be about 50% off the regular Howard County Community College (HCC) tuition rate at about $100 per credit on average. Cheaper if courses are offered at HCPSS and more expensive if on HCC campus.

2. 60 credits will cost a student/family $6,000 and 30 credits $3,000. 60 credits is sufficient for a 2-year HCC Associate degree.

3. FARMs students can take early college credit courses in the JumpStart Program for free. This is paid for by HCPSS.

4. Total JumpStart Program cost for HCPSS is about $1 million per year. About 1/3 of that go to tuition waiver for FARMs students in the program and 2/3 go to transportation and other small items.

5. Admission process will ensure equal opportunity to high achievers, middle of the pack and low achievers.

6. The Program focuses on providing career paths to high school students with many career paths to choose from.

7. Students can start the program at the beginning of the 9th grade or later.

8. No impact on students who choose not to enroll in JumpStart and no impact on school staffing other than what HCPSS already does every year for staff rotation based on enrollment changes among HS.

9. HCPSS has been briefing the five schools involved and the parents and school staff, and has received much positive feedback. BOE asked for a survey to gauge how much capacity relief the Program can bring to HHS, LRHS and CHS. There is more than 350 combined receiving capacity at RHHS and OMHS, if there are more than 350 interested students in this rosy scenario.

CA Board Work Session Meeting Summary 2017-10-12

Resident Speakout:

  1. Bill Santos, Wilde Lake, CA Aquatics Advisory Committee, talked about 2012 aquatic study, recommended a new pool.
  2. Tim Lattimer., Long Reach, urged the board to sign Paris Climate pledge, to create a CA climate advisory committee.
  3. Cliff Wright, Hickory Ridge, talked about the Paris Climate Accord.
  4. Richard Duitschmann, Owen Brown, urged to sign “We are still in” declaration.
  5. Dalia Shlash, River Hill, requested funding for tot lot upgrade starting from 2019.
  6. Larry Liebesman urged to sign “We are still in” declaration.
  7. Earl Sneeringer urged to build or use a Pickle ball facility with 6 or 8 courts, converting Owen Brown Bubble, or build one CA Sports Park.
  8. Joel Hurewitz, urged to sign the Paris Accord.
  9. Catherine Heilveil, graduate from River Hill, urged to sign “We are still in” the Paris Agreement.
  10. Pat Hedrsdy, Steven Forest, talked about “We are still in” pledge.


Energy Management Program Overview,

  1. launched 2012, to reduce energy usage, energy costs and environmental impact.  1 degree room temperature increase will need 2-3% extra energy cost. Right now Columbia Gym is set at 68 degrees (Recommend 68-72 degrees by industry standard).
  2. Energy cost snapshot: Supreme (15321 MMBtu) 23%, Swim Center (10155 MMBtu) 15%, Athletic Club (7787 MMBtu)11%, Columbia Gym (7241 MMBtu) 11%, Ice Rink (5045 MMBtu) 7%, all others 33%.
  3. Renewable Energy.
    1. Nixon Solar Farm generates 2500 MWh of electricity or 25% of our power
    2. Wind RECs purchased for remaining 75% of power
    3. Existing on-site generation at River Hill and Amherst House.
  4. Installing Electric Charge Station, 15K per installation , began to charge users at 0.20 per kW. Used to be free to users. BGE helped to reduce the overall program cost.
  5. 10-12 KW generated  by the solar array at the River Hill Swimming Pool. The energy can power one average household .

2019-2020 Budget Discussion (over 1 million dollar projects):

Category 1:

Columbia Swim Center Phase III renovation: 1.2 million dollars

Category II:

Athletic Club Renovation:  It was estimated that we need 24 million dollars to replace Athletic Club, without considering parking lots. We spent 2 million dollars, plan to spent another 5 million dollars for renovation in 2018-2019.  I was thinking that 50-year old building should be scraped from the ground and rebuilt.  There is a time we should cut loss and build something new.

Supreme Sports Club Renovation: 4.7 million dollars.

Haven on the Lake: 1.0 million dollars

Lake Kittamaqundi Planning and Dredging: 1.09 million dollars

Columbia Wide Pathway Renovation: 1 million dollars

Headquarter Building -Reserve for Deposit: 1.1 million dollars

The board was not able to finish discussing all the budget tonight, will continue the discussion next Thursday.

The board discussed the Dashboard metric briefly.






2018 HCPSS Superintendent Redistricting Proposal

This is the latest, most updated 2018 HCPSS redistricting plan. This is the framework for future discussion. So forget about the previous plans. The superintendent Dr. Martirano dramatically scaled back the school redistricting from both the feasibility study version and AAC version. Here are three graphs (high school, middle school and elementary school) from his proposal. Note the public can now send their opinions to BOE at

Here is the link to find your polygon number:

Superintendent proposal for high schoolSuperintendent proposal for middle schoolSuperintendent proposal for elementary school

The documents are here for your reference:

10 03 2017 Attendance Area Adjustment BR


HCPSS CCP Redistricting Plan

This is a community plan presented tonight by community volunteers, independent of HCPSS Area Attendance Committee.  This plan was not affiliated with the school system at all although they worked with the school to get data and other information.

I attended their meeting tonight and around 160 people were there fully occupying the St John Baptist Church at Tamar Drive. They are looking for your feedback. Also they want this can help to shape the final redistricting. Instead of comprehensive redistricting, they prefer limiting the scope of the redistricting.

Their proposal and analysis are located at

The feedback link is

The superintendent Dr. Martirano will unveil his final redistricting plan tomorrow night ( Oct 3, 2017) at Wilde Lake High School. Please attend it if you can.