Annual Report

2015-16 Annual Report Cover Image September 2016

The Frederick County Public Schools 2015-16 Annual Report is part of an ongoing effort to provide timely and meaningful communications to parents and community members that encourage partnerships supporting student learning. 

Read the digital version, download a PDF of the full report or read selected highlights below.

Selected Highlights and Accomplishments


Image of Fourth High School Design ConceptDeveloped Plans for the 
Fourth High School

The design work for Frederick County’s fourth high school progressed throughout 2015-16. The school, which is scheduled to open in the fall of 2020 according to the School Board’s 2017-2022 Capital Improvement Plan, will be constructed on an 83 acre site immediately east of Evendale Elementary School and Admiral Richard E. Byrd Middle School. A Web page about the project was launched in October 2015 and includes a project overview, renderings of what the school could look like when completed, and a list of frequently asked questions.


Image of the new Frederick County Middle SchoolConstructed the New Frederick County Middle School
The Board received authorization from the Frederick County Board of Supervisors to issue general obligation school bonds in the amount of $29,100,000 through the Virginia Public School Authority to fund the remaining amount needed for the replacement Frederick County Middle School project. The new school, which is located on 33 acres adjacent to Gainesboro Elementary School, opened in the fall of 2016. Learn more, including videos and photo galleries.


Approved the FY17 Budget
After months of work, the Board adopted the FY17 budget on April 21, 2016. The FY17 budget totals $191 million, including a School Operating Fund of $153.2 million. Highlights of the budget include:
  • The FY17 budget (all funds) totals $191,065,242 compared to the FY16 budget of $181,267,128.
  • The FY17 School Operating Fund totals $153,211,000.
  • The FY17 budget includes a two percent enhancement to each salary scale (excluding supplemental scales). The salary initiative does not include a step movement to advance employees to the next pay level for a year experience gained in FY16.
  • The FY17 budget includes funding to open the new Frederick County Middle School, two special education teaching positions needed to remain in compliance with federal regulations, a new elementary teaching position needed to remain in compliance with the state’s K-3 class size reduction program, and two instructional coaches at the elementary level who will be assigned to the schools with the greatest need.
  • The FY17 budget did not include funding for the following budget requests: salary adjustments to recognize gained experience (step movement); targeted salary adjustments to address areas in which the school division’s wages are not competitive with the market; the remaining portion of the elementary instructional coaching initiative; the remaining portion of the K-2 technology initiative; increased operational funds for the facilities services department; increased instructional and support staff for areas of concern such as world languages and language arts, English Language Learners, and special education; division-wide class size and departmental support positions; replacement school buses; and funds for major maintenance projects needed in order to preserve the school division’s assets.
  • School lunch prices will increase 10 cents in FY17. The elementary lunch price will be $2.60 and the middle/high school lunch price will be $2.85.

Image of Concept of 12th Elementary SchoolAwarded a Contract to Design 
the 12th Elementary School

The Board awarded a contract for architectural and engineering services for the 12th elementary school to Grimm and Parker Architects. The award was for $1,836,600 which represents the services for the total project. However, $482,667.20 was subject to appropriation for the remaining stages of the project. The contract term is through six months after substantial completion of the project.




Approved the Industrial Maintenance Technology Academy
The Board approved the Industrial Maintenance Technology Academy which will begin in the 2016-17 school year. Two seniors from James Wood, Millbrook, and Sherando high schools will be selected to participate in the academy which will offer the opportunity for the selected students to receive 31 college credits and two Career Studies Certifications (Electricity and EPACFC) from Lord Fairfax Community College. The students also will receive five Carnegie credits as well as an additional credit if they choose to co-op. Grant funds will be used to cover the cost of the program.


Image of Armel ElementaryAwarded a Contract for the 
Armel Elementary School Addition/Renovations
The Board awarded a contract for architectural and engineering services for the Armel Elementary School addition/renovations to OWPR, Inc. The award was for $587,481 which represents the services for the total project. However, $129,498.50 was subject to appropriation for the remaining stages of the project.

Selected Success Stories

Scholarships Help Students Continue Their Education
The members of the Class of 2016 at James Wood, Millbrook and Sherando high schools earned more than $5.4 million in scholarships during the 2015-16 school year, an increase of approximately $500,000 over the amount of scholarship funds received by members of the Class of 2015.


Transportation Center Receives LEED Certification
The U.S. Green Building Council awarded the Frederick County Transportation Center LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Certification in August 2015. The administration building at the Transportation Center is the first building in Frederick County to receive LEED Certification.


National Recognition for Agriculture Students
The National Wildlife Federation recognized Sherando High School’s Agriculture Department in November 2015 for creating a Certified Wildlife Habitat through its Garden for Wildlife Program. Sherando’s Agriculture Department received the honor for designing and installing a butterfly garden at the school. Student Trevor Whiteside also created an outdoor classroom space adjacent to the garden as part of his Eagle Scout project.


Image of Student with Chromebook

1:1 Chromebook Initiative Expands

After successfully launching the 1:1 Chromebook initiative with all sixth grade students during the 2014-15 school year, all students in grades 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 were equipped with Chromebooks in 2015-16. The devices are used by teachers and other staff to enhance instruction and student engagement. The 1:1 Chromebook initiative will expand to include all high school students in 2016-17.




On-Time Graduation Rate Exceeds 93 Percent
The on-time graduation rate for members of Frederick County Public Schools’ Class of 2015 was 93.3 percent. The school division’s on-time graduation rate has been steadily climbing over the past five years and was greater than the statewide rate of 90.5 percent in 2015.


School Accreditation Gains
From 2014-15 to 2015-16, the number of Frederick County Public Schools that were fully accredited by the Virginia Department of Education increased from nine to 12. Five other schools were partially accredited in 2015-16.


Image of Students in Autobody ClassAuto Body Program Earns 
National Accreditation
The National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF) accredited the Dowell J. Howard Center’s Automotive Body Program in damage analysis/customer service, painting, and refinishing. To achieve this coveted recognition, the school’s automotive body training program underwent rigorous evaluation by NATEF and met the standards of excellence in areas such as instruction, facilities, and equipment.


Image of Grab & Go Breakfast Program

Grab and Go Breakfast Program

The Grab and Go Breakfast Program expanded into nine schools in 2015-16. The program offers students the opportunity to purchase a school breakfast that is provided to them in a bag so they can take their meal to class. Even those students who arrive at school close to the start of the instructional day can get breakfast and have time to eat it as they begin their work in class. The program helps ensure students have an opportunity to eat a good breakfast.



Image of Dr. Sovine Speaking on Capitol HillSuperintendent Speaks on Capitol Hill
In February 2016, Schools Superintendent David Sovine participated in a panel discussion hosted at the U.S. Capitol by The Broader, Bolder Approach to Education. The Broader, Bolder Approach to Education is a national campaign that acknowledges the impact of social and economic disadvantage on schools and students and proposes evidence-based policies to improve schools and remedy conditions that limit many children’s readiness to learn. Representatives from The Broader, Bolder Approach to Education, the Learning Policy Institute, and the Coalition for Community Schools visited FCPS in April 2016 to learn more about the school division’s commitment to helping all students succeed at high levels.


School Quality and Perceptions Survey
Frederick County Public Schools conducted its inaugural School Quality and Perceptions Survey in March 2016. The survey provided students in grades 5-12, parents, and school-based staff with an opportunity to anonymously provide feedback about overall educational quality, academic support, school leadership, student support, family involvement, safety and behavior, and communication. The survey results are being used to identify strengths and improvement opportunities at both the division and individual school levels. View the survey results.

Bright Futures

Learn more about Bright Futures and their work in support of Frederick County Public Schools.