School Notes: Renting DAR Costs Almost $3,000 Per Graduation

Plus: Class of 2017 earns $350 million in scholarship funds; MCPS program fills backpacks for students


Published:

Via Montgomery County Public Schools

Several Montgomery County high schools have to look outside the county to find venues large enough for their graduates and families to celebrate commencement.

But renting these large spaces does come at a cost. How much?

A number of high schools—including James Hubert Blake, Winston Churchill, Albert Einstein, Richard Montgomery, Rockville, Walt Whitman and Thomas S. Wootton—use DAR Constitution Hall in D.C. for commencement. The price for renting the venue is $2,963.72 per graduation, according to a Montgomery County Public Schools spokeswoman. Seventeen schools this year gathered at DAR, for a combined cost of about $50,380.

Larger schools—such as Montgomery Blair, Walter Johnson and Col. Zadok Magruder—hold their events in the Xfinity Center at the University of Maryland. These schools pay $10,000 per graduation, plus parking expenses, the spokeswoman reported.

Four schools held commencements in the College Park venue.

MCPS seniors secure more than $350 million in scholarship money

This year, MCPS graduating seniors landed almost $351 million in college scholarship funding.

The total is $7 million higher than last year’s amount, and Superintendent Jack Smith said he was pleased as could be.

“I am so proud of our students who worked hard, performed at high levels and prepared themselves for the many new opportunities the future will hold,” he said in a press release.

Forty-four seniors have earned National Merit scholarships so far, and more recipients will be announced in July. Full-tuition scholarships from the Posse Foundation have gone to 10 MCPS students from the 2017 class, according to the release.

$10 donation fills a backpack for a student in need

The county’s school system is gathering funds to provide backpacks for students from families who are struggling financially.

The MCPS Give Backpacks program will stock the bags with school supplies that the students will need in the 2017-2018 school year. More than 55,000 students in MCPS are eligible for free- and reduced-price meals, according to the program website.

A donation of $10 will fill a backpack for one student, but givers can also contribute $300 for a class, $1,500 for a grade or $6,500 for an entire school. MCPS accepts donations online or by text or mail and posted more information on the program website.

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