Prince George’s Public Schools officials have terminated an agreement with Milestone Communications to place future cellphone towers on school properties, citing the school system’s commitment to providing a safe and supportive environment for students and staff.

Because of concerns about the potential impact of cellphone towers on student health and the site selection process, officials said it was in the best interest of the school community to move forward on the decision.

While the Virginia-based Milestone Communications will continue to manage existing tower locations at seven sites, PGCPS hasn’t made a decision regarding future agreements with telecommunications providers.

School Bus App

Prior to the first day of school on Sept. 6, PGCPS encouraged parents to try out the new Bb District by Blackboard mobile app for bus stop locations and transportation updates.

“In today’s technology-driven and increasingly mobile world, we want to provide parents more information at their fingertips. This school year if you’re wondering when the bus will arrive, there’s an app for that,” said schools CEO Kevin Maxwell.

In addition to transportation updates, the app provides convenient access to school lunch balances, homework assignments, grades and more.

Maxwell Responds to DACA Decision

Maxwell issued the following statement on President Donald Trump’s decision to phase out the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, policy that Barack Obama announced in 2012 to protect hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants from deportation:

“Since 2012, DACA has provided thousands of young people, many of whom were brought to the United States as children, with an opportunity to remain in the only country they have called home. They have been able to pursue higher education, enroll in the military, pay taxes, and drive legally. Prince George’s County Public Schools continues to support our students, staff, and families impacted by this decision.

“The U.S. public school system has helped our young people to become productive, civic-minded, and responsible members of our democratic society. We call on Congress to act quickly to pass the DREAM Act so that DREAMers across our nation continue to have access to an education and economic security, and all Americans can enjoy a stronger, more prosperous nation.

“Students, families, and staff can find valuable resources to help discuss DACA at home or in the classroom, as appropriate.

“For questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact our Diversity Officer, Nora Morales, at 301-952-6341 or 301-952-6225.”

Back-to-School Night

Accokeek Academy — 6th through 8th grades: Sept. 19 (6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.)

K through 5th grades: Sept. 20 (6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.)

Adelphi Elementary — pre-K through 2nd grades: Sept. 19 (5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.)

3rd through 6th grades: Sept. 20 (5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.)

Adelphi Elementary — Pre-K through 2nd grades: Sept. 19 (5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.)

3rd through 6th grades: Sept. 20 (5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.)

Dodge Park Elementary — pre-K through 2nd grades: Sept. 19 (4 p.m. – 5 p.m.)

3rd through 6th grades: Sept. 19 (5:15 p.m. – 6:15 p.m.)

Backpacks for Houston

PGCPS is donating 2,000 backpacks filled with school supplies to students in the Houston Independent School District, as well as aiming to raise $132,000 for the HISD Foundation.

Maxwell challenged superintendents in neighboring Maryland school districts to join PGCPS in supporting Houston students.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the Houston Independent School District and the many children and families throughout the Houston metro area,” Maxwell. “We want to pay forward the incredible generosity shown to our students by residents, businesses and civic organizations. Prince George’s County has a heart as big as Texas and we want to provide whatever help we can.”

The school system exceeded its goal of collecting 10,000 backpacks for its recent annual Back-to-School Fair, during which community and business partners donated more than 11,000 backpacks.

Houston ISD has an immediate need for children’s clothes in all sizes, school uniforms and school supplies. Donations can be shipped to: Mark Smith at Delmar Stadium, 2020 Mangum Road, Houston, TX 77092

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Dorothy Rowley – Washington Informer Staff Writer

I knew I had to become a writer when at age nine I scribbled a note to my younger brother’s teacher saying I thought she was being too hard on him in class. Well, the teacher immediately contacted my mother, and with tears in her eyes, profusely apologized. Of course, my embarrassed mother dealt with me – but that didn’t stop me from pursuing my passion for words and writing. Nowadays, as a “semi-retiree,” I continue to work for the Washington Informer as a staff writer. Aside from that, I keep busy creating quirky videos for YouTube, participating in an actor’s guild and being part of my church’s praise dance team and adult choir. I’m a regular fixture at the gym, and I like to take long road trips that have included fun-filled treks to Miami, Florida and Jackson, Mississippi. I’m poised to take to the road again in early 2017, headed for New Orleans, Louisiana. This proud grandmother of two – who absolutely adores interior decorating – did her undergraduate studies at Virginia Union University and graduate work at Virginia State University.

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