Council President’s Message
After several months and many worksessions, the Council will make final decisions on the County budget this week and next. The County’s budget totals over $5 billion, supporting critical services from police, fire and rescue, transportation, housing to libraries, parks, and recreation.
This week I would like to take you inside the priority that constitutes almost half of the entire County budget, Montgomery County Public Schools.
The Board of Education requested, the County Executive recommended, and the County Council is poised to approve an FY19 Operating Budget for Montgomery County Public Schools of $2.6 billion, an increase of $73 million or 3% over FY18. Much of the increase is due to continued enrollment growth. MCPS projects an increase of over 1,700 students in FY19. This is 100% of the funding requested by the Board of Education.
The FY19 MCPS budget request maintains or enhances several important programs, including:
- maintaining the class-size reductions approved by the Council in FY17;
- expanding two-way immersion dual language programs to three additional elementary schools;
- increasing counselor and psychologist positions to address the physical, psychological, and social well-being of students;
- adding new career pathway programs for high-school students;
- expanding needed pre-kindergarten programs and services.
- and maintaining funding approved by the Council last year to expand Head Start programs from half-day to full-day, shown by the research as a key component in maximizing the impact of early childhood education.
With respect to funding allocation, the local contribution of tax dollars would fund 66% of MCPS’ request, with the state providing most of the remainder. Montgomery County continues to rank near the top of all Maryland jurisdictions in total per pupil funding and the proportion of local funding provided.
The next few weeks we will take a deeper look into the rest of the budget. Stay tuned.
- The Council reviewed the operating budget for the Montgomery County Police Department, the Department of Fire and Rescue Services, the Department of Health and Human Services, and others.
- The Council held an applicant interview for a position on the Montgomery County Planning Board
- The Council commemorated Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month with leaders and members of these important Montgomery County communities.
- The Council presented proclamations recognizing Chesapeake Bay Awareness Week, ALS Awareness Month, National Correctional Officers Week, and celebrating over 50 years since the establishment of Montgomery College’s nursing program.
How do I…
…dig even deeper into the MCPS budget?
If we have only whetted your appetite for more information on the MCPS budget, below you will find even more resources.