• Wix Facebook page
  • Wix Twitter page
  • Wix Google+ page

Board of Ed Clears Way for Fully Funded Expansion of Programs at the New Seneca Valley High School

As work continues on the new Seneca Valley High School, there has been a bit of funding crisis between the Board of Education and the County Executive over a proposed expansion of the programs to be offered at the newly constructed $138.4 million high school rising in Germantown.

The crisis has been over the Board of Education’s request for an addition $7.5 million in the FY 2019-2024 Capital Improvements Program for the construction of the master-planned shell on the fourth floor of the new building that will accommodate the expansion of additional Career and Technology Education (CTE) programs at Seneca Valley High School. The new programs will transform the school into an UpCounty hub for career readiness vocational programs. The only other similar CTE hub is Thomas Edison High School of Technology in Wheaton.

County Executive Marc Elrich’s recommended fiscal year 2020 capital budget, which was released in January, did not fund the Board’s request for an additional $45 million which included the $7.5 million earmarked for the expansion of CTE programs at Seneca Valley 2.0. The construction of the new school was never in danger, but it was the funding of the expanded CTE programs which the County Executive eliminated.

At Monday night’s Board of Education meeting, the Board unanimously approved a resolution which would shuffle funding from other approved projects to ensure that the proposed CTE program funding would be continued and be the necessary changes to the construction work to accommodate the new programs would continue.

“Our vision for the Seneca Valley High School project is to increase access to countywide Career and Technology Education programs and provide an UpCounty hub for the Career and Technology Education program for Montgomery County Public Schools,” read the Board of Education’s resolution regarding the funding.

“In order to ensure the expansion of the Career and Technology Education program when the revitalization/expansion of Seneca Valley High School is complete, the funds for this modification must be approved before July 1,” said the resolution.

MCPS Superintendent Jack Smith recommended that school board moved $2 million allocated for restroom renovations, $2.5 million from “planned life-cycle asset replacement” and $3 million from roof replacement projects countywide over three years for the Seneca Valley project.