Cast your vote for Dr. Linfeng Chen by July 19

Please share the video with your friends/neighbors/communities if he is your choice!

Vote Dr. Linfeng Chen. He will put our children’s education above politics, focusing on academics and insisting tax dollars are used to ensure resources are in place so all children can reach their greatest potential. Dr. Chen is the leader we need making decisions and providing direction on the Howard County Board of Education.

Follow him on Facebook at DrChen4BOE and visit his campaign website Chen4BOE.org to make contributions and sign up as volunteers. His grassroots campaign needs your help! You can make a difference!

Better Education for All! Vote for Chen!

Howard County public school SY 2023-24 redistricting process impact, feedback and my positions

The 2022 Feasibility Study includes four redistricting scenarios A, B, C, D to open New HS #13 for implementation in SY 2023-24. Please check if your area is impacted.

https://go.boarddocs.com/…/06%2009%202022%20Feasibility…

You can locate your Polygon using this map.

https://hcpss-gis.maps.arcgis.com/…/webap…/index.html…

Redistricting Process for the 2023-2024 School Year

https://www.hcpss.org/school…/redistricting-for-23-24/

You can participate in this redistricting by attending three community feedback sessions and filling out the survey

Thursday June 23 Long Reach HS, 7-8:30 pm

Tuesday June 28 Reservoir HS, 7-8:30 pm

Wednesday June 29 Oakland Mills HS, 7-8:30 pm

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/HCPSS_FS_2022

As a school board candidate, I support neighborhood schools, minimize small feeders, reduce transportation times for students, and reduce transportation costs by optimized shorter routes.

Redistricting should only be based on school utilization and should be done less frequently and more predictably.

Recent OBRC (HCPSS Operating Budget Review Committee) motions passed

Please see OBRC (HCPSS Operating Budget Review Committee) motions passed recently:

1. OBRC commends HCPSS for the development of a Strategic Technology Plan. The OBRC recommends HCPSS conduct an annual review of technology priorities and potential advantages/disadvantages and identify possible cost savings by 1) analyzing technology use patterns, 2) maintenance/replacement requests, and 3) technical support needs at each of the following levels: early childhood, elementary, middle, secondary. (Motion passes 12-0)

2. The OBRC recommends that the BOE request that the budget start with a variance analysis from the previous budget to the current forecast (of the current school year), explaining the gap between the budget and the forecast, and then a walk from the current forecast to the current budget (of the next school year). (Motion passes 12-0)

3. Recommend that all Budget reconciliation scenarios be presented in one concise document that is updated as new scenarios are drafted to allow for easy comparative analysis. (Motion passes 10-0, 1 abstention)

4. The OBRC requests the Board ask HCPSS to disclose in the budget the quantifiable and measurable metrics and indicators used to clarify needs for additional non-instructional staff and the performance goals tied to these positions. (Motion passes 10-0)

5. The OBRC recommends the Board request HCPSS provide a Citizen’s Guide to the Budget, per internal auditor recommendation in the Budget Process Review. (Motion passes 10-0)

Can I vote in the Primary Election on July 19, 2022?

Can voters who are not registered with the Democratic or Republican Party (voters who are registered as independent or not affiliated) vote in the Primary Election on July 19, 2022? The answer is YES. You cannot vote for those running for election as Governor, County Executive, County Council, and other elected positions that are party affiliated (you can vote in the General election for these positions), but you can vote in the primary for elected positions that are nonpartisan, such as Board of Education.

Why do Board of Education positions run as nonpartisan? Simple, School Board Members are supposed to act in the best interest of all children regardless of their party affiliation and without conflict or influence from a political party. I am running for one of the At-Large position on the Board of Education because I strongly believe that politics should not influence decision making when it comes to educating our children. So, when it comes time to vote in the Primary Election, ask yourself if the person you are considering for a position on the School Board has a political agenda, or are they, like me, in it to ensure a better education for all students? If you care about education and address the real problems, please vote for Dr. Linfeng Chen. I will ALWAYS put children and their education above party politics.

You can make a difference by contributing to my campaign, staging my yard sign on your yard, wearing Vote for CHEN T-shirts, and volunteer anything you like to do! Please visit my website (chen4boe.org) and register. I appreciate any help from you!

Howard County’s Families for Education Improvement (FEI) endorsement

I would like to thank Howard County’s Families for Education Improvement (FEI) for their endorsement of me for Howard County Board of Education. It is my desire to ensure EVERY student receives the best education possible in a safe, nurturing, and supportive environment. Education opens the doors to a bright, exciting future and all our children deserve those doors to be flung wide open for them. Thank you for putting your faith in me, I will work hard and value your support!

Follow me on Facebook and check out my website chen4boe.org to learn more about my campaign.

What do Devices, Social Emotional Health, the HCPSS Budget, and Equity have in common? 

Looking at the HCPSS budget for devices, the proposal is to provide devices for all students, whether they need them at home or not.  It is also proposed to have 20% replacement ready to go in case of loss, stolen, breakage or failure.  Cost for 1 device:1 student is: $23M.  How often do they break?  Very often!  Cost for 20% replacement each year: $4.7M.   Bringing devices back and forth to school, especially for young children, is costly, accidents are bound to happen. Nearly 3750 devices have been reported lost or stolen in FY2022-21, at a cost of $1.5M.  

Have you noticed your kids play less outside and spend more time with chromebooks?  Exactly how much of that screen time is causing a problem with our children’s mental health?  According to the Mayo Clinic, too much screen time and regular exposure to poor-quality electronic contents has been linked to: obesity, inadequate sleep schedules and insufficient sleep, behavior problems, delays in language and social skills development, violence, attention problems, and less time learning.  Is it important that every student be able to watch YouTube and put up TikTok videos or would it be more equitable to ensure every student receives a quality education?  I believe we have to approach this in a different way.  

1.  We must recognize that shutting down school caused extreme harm to all our students and a full virtual option should never be considered again. The emergency preparation should focus on mitigation methods and sustaining in-person instruction. Therefore, 1:1 device is no longer necessary.  What is necessary is a plan to bring students into class even when our Covid numbers increase, or if any other communicable disease rears its ugly head in the future.   

2.  Elementary school children should not have a school device at home.  They need to be outside playing, not attached to a screen.  They can and should get their homework done with a piece of paper and a stubby pencil. It sounds uncool and rudimentary, but in reality, it stimulates more of the student’s senses and hightens learning. An added bonus is it costs a lot less money and the young student won’t be tempted to travel to internet locations unsupervised or simply google the answers. Let’s focus our budget on ensuring every elementary student leaves the fifth grade as proficient readers and math ready.  

3. According to the US Census, the median household income in our County is $124,042.  Many Howard County households have more than one computer at home. Parents I talked to said, they want their children to use the computers they have at home for at home schoolwork because they can monitor the use better, and they don’t have to worry about being charged when a school computer is damaged or lost. Does that mean everyone has a computer at home?  No. It means HCPSS should not be budgeting for a 1:1 student device ratio.  If a family requests a computer for their student, the school system should provide a computer.  To me that’s equity, if you need a computer to do your schoolwork, you get a computer to do your schoolwork.  If you don’t request a computer, you still have to do your schoolwork, that’s taking responsibility for your education. HCPSS should be fiscally responsible and spend taxpayer dollars for those who cannot afford a computer at home. The savings on this can go directly into lowering class size, a much better use of taxpayer dollars.

4.  A teacher suggested to me that many parents need training on helping their students navigate school use applications and how to monitor computer use. We have an obligation to educate parents as well, and do it in many languages. Let’s help our parents be partner’s in their child’s education by providing them the tools they need to keep their children safe, but learning, while online. 

5.  Finally, we have to limit the time all students are on computer screens at school. A computer should not take the place of hands-on teaching and learning for normal subjects.  It is more valuable for a student to actually conduct the experiment, observe the reaction, and write down the results rather than watch someone do the experiment online. Does that mean computers don’t have a role to play in our children’s education? Absolutely not. I can think of reasons why students should have access to a computer at school, not the least of which is allowing a student to take a class not offered at their school.  Again, that’s equity, no one should be denied an opportunity to learn because not enough students wanted to take a particular class at their school.

Cancelled! Meet and Greet on June 2 (Thur) evening at Cypressmede Park

This event is cancelled due to thunderstorms possibilities in the evening.

Come to join us with Dr. Chen and friends at Cypressmede Park in Ellicott Cty. Bring your lawn chairs if desired. Light refreshments and assorted sweets will be provided.

When: June 2 (Thursday) 6:00 – 8:30PM
Where: Cypressmede Park
3100 Fawnwood Drive
Ellicott City, MD 21042

Agenda: Brief Introduction, Q & A, Chat and Greet