January 29, 2020
Damascus High School Renovations
Dear DES Family,
The DHS PTA building renovation committee has asked for our, and all of the Damascus Community’s, help in ensuring that the DHS Renovation is fully funded. To ensure that the needs of the students of Damascus are heard and recognized, they have asked that we join the email campaign to the County Council members who are currently reviewing the MCPS Capital Improvements Program (CIP). The emails need to reach the below listed council members by no later than February 6, 2020.
This is a vital point for our community to rally around, Our future DHS students deserve a learning environment that supports and inspires their educational goals.
Thank you in advance!
We are Dragons, Hear us Roar!
Directly from the DHS Renovation Committee:
The Damascus High School renovation and addition is in the final level of approval, but the total funding may be cut (see below), so we need families to advocate for full funding.
The Damascus High School $95M renovation and addition is in the final level of approval. County Executive Elrich recently recommended funding only 94% of the MCPS Capital Improvements Program (CIP), so 6% (or about $100M) could be cut.
The County Council is currently reviewing the MCPS Capital Improvements Program (CIP).
Please help advocate for full funding by sending emails to the County Council members.
The DHS PTA building renovation committee has provided suggested wording for you to customize and use. We ask that you send emails directly to the four people listed below by February 6, 2020.
If you have any questions, please email Jenn Van Hoven at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Email Subject Line:
DHS Building Renovation Email Campaign to County Council
Suggested Councilmembers to Email:
County Council President Sidney Katz, District 3 (Gaithersburg) Councilmember.Katz@montgomerycountymd.gov
The County Council Education & Culture Committee:
1. Craig Rice, District 2 (he represents the Damascus area), Chair, Education & Culture Committee Councilmember.Rice@montgomerycountymd.gov
2. Will Jawando, At-Large Councilmember.Jawando@montgomerycountymd.gov
3. Nancy Navarro, District 4 Councilmember.Navarro@montgomerycountymd.gov
County Council home page for additional reference: https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/council/
Suggested Email Content to cut and paste (or write your own):
Montgomery County Council,
I am a (parent/student/staff member/community member) in the Damascus High School Community. I strongly urge your support to fully fund the $95 million renovation and addition at Damascus High School as detailed in the MCPS Board of Education Requested FY 2021-2026 Capital Improvements Program.
Damascus High School is the oldest upper-level building in the MCPS system. Damascus HS was built in 1950 and was last renovated over 40 years ago in 1978. Damascus HS received “red zone” end of life span ratings for interior finishes, plumbing, electrical, equipment and elevators in the 2018 MCPS School Facilities Assessment. A significant security concern is that the main administrative office of Damascus HS is not located at the front entrance. Also, Damascus High School’s outdated narrow stairwells create dangerous “choke points” for students and staff moving throughout the building every school day. These choke points would prove especially dangerous in an evacuation.
The Damascus High School community deserves a 21st-century learning environment that is safe and supports student achievement. Critically needed facility improvements at Damascus HS are imperative to support our children as they grow and learn. Thank you for all that you do for our county and for what I hope will be your support for the entire $95 million renovation and addition at Damascus High School.