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The Charles County Board of Education is dismayed by actions of the Charles County commissioners that deliberately allow overcrowding of schools through the approval of developer rights and responsibility agreement applications in areas where schools are over state-rated capacity.

On Feb. 12, the commissioners approved four DRRA applications, all in attendance zones where schools are over state-rated capacity. This action undermines county policy to use state-rated capacity in the allocation procedure and the board’s redistricting process, which occurs to relieve overcrowding and provide the most ideal learning environment for students.

We redistrict students to meet instructional goals and to relieve overcrowding, which has been caused by failed Charles County government allocation policies that have been in existence for decades.

In October 2011, the commissioners and board agreed to use state-rated capacity — the optimum student population for each school as determined by the state — when considering residential development. The use of state-rated capacity replaced core capacity, which allows for more students and assumes the use of relocatable classrooms to accommodate the additional student population. The commissioners formalized the use of state-rated capacity and passed a resolution in May 2012 amending its policy to replace core capacity with state-rated capacity starting with the January 2012 allocation cycle.

We feel Tuesday’s vote is disrespectful of our agreement to limit future overcrowding of schools and the frequency of redistricting by controlling residential development.

Finally, the board of education thanks Commissioner Ken Robinson, the lone dissenter, for honoring the agreement made with the school board and for following county policy by using state-rated capacity to guide his allocation decisions.

That is what we agreed to, and it is what’s best for our students and schools.



Roberta S. Wise, Maura Cook, Jennifer Abell, Patricia Bowie, Michael Lukas, Pamela Pedersen and Donald M. Wade, La Plata

The writers are the members of the Charles County Board of Education.