Dear Team BCPS,
Is time speeding up? It seems like just yesterday that our dedicated staff was clearing snow and ice on a regular basis to keep school grounds safe for students and staff. Now, the landscape is alive with blooming trees and flowers.
It’s the perfect time of year for an update on the ¡Todos adelante! program, which is teaching conversational Spanish to Grade 4 students at 10 Passport schools throughout the county. BCPS is starting world language instruction at the elementary level to give students time to become proficient. This is part of our efforts to graduate students globally competitive.
Next year, current Passport schools will add Grade 5 Spanish, and fourth grade Spanish will expand to 15 more schools. Learn here about the schoolwide positive impacts already emerging from ¡Todos adelante! as recently presented to the Board of Education (starting at 1:32:20).
A season of celebrations has begun. Fifteen BCPS schools were named among America’s Most Challenging High Schools by the Washington Post. We’ll recognize the Baltimore County Teacher of the Year on May 6. And after Memorial Day, commencement exercises will begin, ushering our graduating seniors into the next exciting phase of their lives.
Remember how enthusiastic we were at the beginning of the school year? Let’s bring that energy to the fourth quarter of the school year to continue helping every student grow every day.
S. Dallas Dance
Dr. S. Dallas Dance
Superintendent, Baltimore County Public Schools
Distinguished as a vibrant and visionary leader, Superintendent Dr. S. Dallas Dance has united Baltimore County Public Schools students, staff and the community into Team BCPS, a powerful force committed to producing globally competitive graduates.
In collaboration with Team BCPS, Dr. Dance spearheaded the development of Blueprint 2.0, a five-year strategic plan focused on improving academics, safety, communication and organizational effectiveness.
Under Dr. Dance’s leadership, fundamental shifts in teaching and learning are taking place through groundbreaking initiatives including S.T.A.T. (Students and Teachers Accessing Tomorrow), designed to create a 1:1 digital learning environment for all students, and the Second Language Acquisition program, which will support all students in achieving fluency in a second language.
In recognition of its advances in instructional technology, BCPS was accepted into the League of Innovative Schools, and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation awarded a $1.5 million grant to BCPS. In 2014, Dr. Dance was selected by President Barack Obama as one of 10 national “Connected Educator Champions of Change,” named one of eight “tech savvy” superintendents by eSchool News, appointed to the board of directors for the International Society for Technology in Education, and received the “Walk the Walk" award from EdSurge and Digital Promise. Dr. Dance also was named among the National School Boards Association’s prestigious “20 to Watch" educators for 2014-2015. Microsoft honored BCPS in 2015 by selecting it as one of its “Showcase” school systems.
Other areas of focus for the Dance administration have been enhancing special education services and magnet programs; expanding preschool access; increasing equity and rigor; rethinking middle schools; and boosting the graduation rate.
Open dialogue with the community and professional development for all staff members are additional hallmarks of Dr. Dance’s administration. In recognition of their commitment to communications, Dr. Dance and BCPS Chief Communications Officer Mychael Dickerson received the prestigious national Leadership Through Communication Award from AASA, the National School Public Relations Association, and Blackboard.
Other honors for Dr. Dance include an appointment from President Barack Obama to the President’s Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for African Americans and selection to the executive committee of the American Association of School Administrators.
Prior to his appointment in Baltimore County, Dr. Dance served as one of three chief school officers in the Houston Independent School District, the seventh largest school system in the nation, and served in executive leadership positions in Virginia.
Dr. Dance earned doctorate and master's degrees from Virginia Commonwealth University and a bachelor's degree from Virginia Union University.A resident of Baltimore County, Dr. Dance is the proud father of one son, Myles Dallas Dance.