APS News Release

School Board Approves Proposed FY 2019 Budget

Appoints Principals for Key, New Middle School at Stratford

Last night, the School Board approved its Proposed FY 2019 Arlington Public Schools budget to fund operations for the 2018-19 school year. The budget totals $637,184,475.

The School Board made the following changes to the Superintendent’s Proposed Budget:

  • The addition of a tier at the top of the Extended Day fee scale;
  • Increasing Building Use fees by 10%;
  • Moving to a shared device model (iPads) in grades K-2. Staff is directed to proceed with the Technology and Instruction study in the fall and implement study recommendations in the FY20 budget;
  • Eliminating $865,000 in additional technology funding; $10,000 to develop an APS tag line to incorporate with the current logo, and $20,130 for fees associated with the Baldridge process;
  • Reducing APS credit card fees by $175,000 by adding the 2.5% fee to all users who pay by credit card; and
  • Recalculating the additional staffing provided to Arlington Tech to reflect the actual anticipated increase in students. This will provide a savings of $591,888.

The Board also restored funding for the following reductions that had been proposed in the Superintendent’s Proposed Budget:

  • $70,000 for implementing the Green Initiative;
  • $318,620 for professional development in Human Resources for the dual certification and dual enrollment cohorts and the Assistant to Teacher program;
  • $222,640 for Transportation Demand Management; and
  • $283,200 for department chairs release period

The School Board’s proposed budget also revised the reductions in the Department of Teaching and Learning as follows:

  • Restore an Arts Specialist position;
  • Restore a STEM specialist for grades K-12;
  • Increase the number of administrative assistants reduced from three to four;
  • Reduce one data specialist;
  • Reinstate elementary content area lead teacher stipends; and
  • Reinstate half of the high school clerical reduction.

In addition, while the Board’s proposed budget retains the reduction of six Montessori school instructional assistants, it also restores seven Montessori instructional assistants by permanently reducing funds for the following positions in the Montessori school program:

  • Eliminating the FLES program for Montessori school students; and
  • Reducing the amount of time and, therefore, staffing for art, music, and Physical Education for Montessori school students

Finally, the budget includes funding for high school assistant activity director stipends, one additional staff position at the Outdoor Lab as well as the addition of 1.75 psychologists and/or social workers.

The presentation and motion from the meeting are available online.

There will be a Public Hearing on the School Board’s Proposed Budget on April 19 and the Board is expected to adopt the FY19 Budget on May 3.


  • The School Board appointed Marleny Perdomo as the new Principal of Key Elementary School. She is currently the assistant principal of Washington-Lee High School.
  • Ellen Smith was named the Principal of the New Middle School at Stratford. Smith is currently an assistant principal at Jefferson Middle School.
  • The School Board appointed Catherine Ashby as the Director of Communications. Ashby is a public relations/communications expert with almost 20 years of experience. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Public Relations, Communications and Journalism from Miami University in Ohio. Since 2000, Ashby has worked for Edelman, the world’s largest privately-owned and leading global communications firm, most recently serving as Senior Vice President and Group She also has extensive experience working with media, optimizing social media results, crisis management, grassroots advocacy, and community relations.
  • Shannan Ellis was named Supervisor of Mathematics. She has served as the Interim Supervisor of Mathematics since October 2017.
  • Christine Joy was named Assistant Principal at Kenmore Middle School where she has been an interim AP since 2016.


  • Update on the 2018-2024 Strategic Plan – Staff and Strategic Plan Steering Committee Co-Chairs Meredith Purple and Ted Black updated the Board on the work and progress to develop a new Strategic Plan. The community is being asked to share their thoughts on the draft plan using the community questionnaire. The Steering Committee will finalize the draft 2018-24 Strategic Plan for School Board consideration in May and the School Board will adopt the new Strategic Plan in June 2018.


  • Final Design & Construction Contract Award-Full GMP for the New Middle School at Stratford – The Board awarded the contract for the final design to Turner Construction Company in the amount of $30,423,369.
  • Concept Design for the New Elementary School at Reed – The Board approved the integrated concept design which is the preferred design of the Building Level Planning Committee, Public Facilities Review Committee and community members as well as a maximum total project funding of $55 million.


  • Special Education Annual Plan – Staff presented the overview of the annual Special Education Application which is required by the Virginia Department of Education.
  • Construction Contract Award for Gunston HVAC Modernization – Staff proposed awarding the contract to Shapiro and Duncan, Inc. in the amount of $8,499,000. In addition, staff asked that the Board approved the proposed total project budget of $11.5 million and to approve the use of HVAC, Roofing and Infrastructure bonds to fully fund the project.
  • Construction Contract Award for Gunston HVAC Modernization – Staff presented a proposed License Agreement granting APS temporary use of the top deck of Arlington County’s Barcroft Park Parking Garage, located at 4200 S. Four Mile Run Drive, for off-street parking of personal vehicles of APS bus drivers and staff from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m., weekdays, year-round. There are no fees associated with this license agreement.
  • The Children’s School Letter of Intent – The Board discussed the Proposed Letter of Intent that would keep The Children’s School and Integration Station together for the next 15 years.

More information for all items is available on BoardDocs. 

The School Board began the meeting by recognizing winter sport athletes who excelled in their field of competition as well as Yorktown High School Football coach and PE teacher Bruce Hanson for achieving his 250th win as a coach. As part of Military Child Month, the Board recognized students of military families. 

The next School Board meeting will be held on Thu, April 19 at 6:30 p.m. The agenda will be posted one week before the meeting on BoardDocs.    

Citizens who want to comment on any of the items discussed at the School Board meeting should email the Board at school.board@apsva.us or call 703-228-6015. Citizens may call 703-228-2400 on the Monday after the School Board meetings to listen to a meeting summary. School Board meetings are also broadcast live on Comcast Cable Channel 70 and Verizon FiOS Channel 41; live-streamed on the APS website, and re-broadcast on Fridays at 9 p.m. and Mondays at 7:30 p.m. immediately following the meeting. All materials and minutes of the meeting will be posted to the website at aps2016.apsva.us/schoolboard upon School Board approval at a subsequent meeting.