PRESS RELEASE: Current and Former Councilmembers, Former County Execs to Step Forward to Support Ike Leggett. Click here to find out more!
 


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A Goshen-Side Reception for Ike
    Date: May 20, 2006
    Time: 4:30pm-6:30pm
    Location:22205 Goshen School Rd
        Gaithersburg, MD
Reception for Ike Leggett at the Home of Betsy & Ralph Stephens
    Date: May 21, 2006
    Time: 5 to 7 pm
    Location: 11 Magnolia Parkway
      Chevy Chase, MD
    For more info, call 301-656-6132
An Informal Meet & Greet with Ike
    Date: May 25, 2006
    Time: 7:00pm-9:00pm
    Location:17708 Globe Theater Dr
        Olney, MD 20832
Together With Ike
    Date: June 4, 2006
    Time: 3:30 to 6 pm
    Location: Mi Rancho Restaurant
      8701 Ramsey Avenue
      Silver Spring MD 20910
    For more info, call 301-587-
6943
Pitch In For Ike - Baseball & Politics
    Date: June 11, 2006
    Picnic Dinner: 6:15pm
    Baseball Game: 7:30pm
    Location: Shirley Povich Field at
      Cabin John Regional Park
    Click here to see flyer.

 
Event With Stella Kwan and James Whuan
    Group Photo
    Date: January, 2006
Olney Theatre Event
    Photo Album
    Date: April. 23, 2006
Indian Holi Event at the Home of Mr. Arora
    Photo Album
    Date: Apr. 9, 2006
Meet and Greet that was Held at Ron and Kim Little's Home
    Photo Album
    Date: Mar. 18, 2006
African-American Dems pay homage to black officials
    Montgomery County Gazette
    Published: Mar. 1, 2006
Letter to the Honorable Montgomery County Delegation
    Letter
    Date: Feb. 23, 2006
Leggett Goes After Waste
    Washington Post
    Published: Feb. 16, 2006
Letter to County Council President George Leventhal
    Letter
    Date: Feb. 14, 2006
Save Our Sligo
    Photo Album
    Date: Feb. 7, 2006
Ike Around the County
    Photo Album
    Various Dates and Locations
Volunteers at the Olney
Theater

    Photo Album
    Date: Jan. 30, 2006
Martin Luther King Commemorative Event
    Washington Jewish Week
    Published: Jan. 26, 2006
Coffee Hosted by Carmen and Joe Camacho
    Photo Album
    Date: Jan. 24, 2006
Debate at Leisure World
    Photo Album
    Date: Jan. 12, 2006
District 20 Breakfast Club
    Photo Album
    Date: Dec 18, 2005
Montgomery College in Takoma Park
    Photo Album
    Date: Dec 10, 2005
Habitat for Humanity Groundbreaking
    Photo Album
    Date: Nov. 6, 2005
County Executive Candidate Supports ‘Balanced Growth’
    Montgomery County Gazette
    Published: Nov. 16, 2005
Current & Former Councilmembers, Former County Execs to Step Forward to Support Leggett
   
Press Release
    Released: Nov. 8, 2005
Anticipating Emergencies
     Article: See 'Press Releases'
    
Published here: Sept 22, 2005

 

One of the primary factors that influenced my recent decision to run for Montgomery County Executive is my passion for education and my excitement at seeing some of the achievements in the public school system resulting from changes initiated when I served on the County Council from 1986 through 2002. Clearly much remains to be done, and nothing would please me more than to once again be part of the team, helping to lead a renaissance in education for all of our children. Simply put, education has been an essential part of my life, and it will be the top priority in my administration.

Some of you may not know that I grew up in a poverty-stricken environment in Louisiana. My mother worked several jobs to provide the basic needs for my twelve brothers and sisters and me. Early in our lives she taught us the value of hard work, high moral and ethical standards, and the importance of knowledge and education. My mother’s formula for success was to embrace education as a means to better ourselves. This she did by constantly challenging us to learn as much as possible. She did not tolerate excuses that would deter us from achieving our goals. Her example has had a profound impact on my life and that of my siblings. Her teachings about the importance of education instilled in us a constant desire to learn. Interestingly enough and as a testament to my mother’s teaching, four of my siblings have also pursued careers in education: one of my sisters is a school administrator, two are teachers, and a brother works as a supporting services employee in the school system in East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana.

I have been a professor at Howard University Law School since 1975 and hold a B.A, M.A, JD, and LLM degrees. Graduating first in my class from Howard University Law School in 1974, I held the third highest academic average in the history of the school. Later I served as the law school’s Assistant and Associate Dean. In 1978 I was selected as a White House Fellow, a unique national honor, which placed me at the highest levels of executive leadership in our federal government.

In addition, the education communities most recently honored me with the following:

  • The Maryland States Teachers Outstanding Leadership Award, 2005
  • Montgomery College Special Leadership Award, 2003
  • The Lifetime Achievement Award from Maryland Parent Teachers Association, 2002

Education continues to be a focal point of my life’s work. During each of my sixteen years on the Montgomery County Council, I was a member of the Council’s Education Committee. I was first elected to the Council at a time when the County faced a looming recession and the challenge of funding and allocating resources to meet the needs of our ever-changing community. The numbers tell an amazing story. Between 1986, when I was first elected to the Council, and when I left in 2002, the student population in Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) had increased by about 42,000 students.

As a member of the Education Committee and three-term president of the Council, I was part of a dynamic partnership dedicated to maintaining MCPS’ reputation for academic excellence. We met this challenge despite a recession in the early nineties, by funding researched-based initiatives that were proven to help children. Highlighted are just a few key examples that demonstrate what my priorities will be as your County Executive.

  • Provide Adequate Building Capacity to Reduce Overcrowding. We built schools to accommodate increases in our student population. When I was elected to the Council in 1986, MCPS had a total of 152 schools. By the time I left in 2002, working with my colleagues on the Education Committee we had funded 40 new schools: 23 elementary schools, 13 middle schools, and 4 high schools. Thanks to our work the Capital Budget had grown from an expenditure of $23.4 million in FY 1986 to $135.5 million in FY 2002. With this and other resources we were able to accomplish building many additions, modernizations, and renovation.

    Beyond mere bricks and mortar, these classrooms incorporated new teachers and updated resources that continue to have a positive effect on student academic achievement in MCPS today.
     
  • Reduce Class Sizes to meet each child’s individual learning needs. We funded smaller class sizes because the research showed that teachers are more effective with students in small class settings. I am especially proud to have funded and helped sustain the multi-year early childhood initiative that began in 1999 with $10.3 million to reduce class size.

    These funds helped reduce oversized classes across the system to the levels of the 1994-95 school year. They helped lower the size of classes for reading in grades 1 and 2. They helped decrease class sizes in Grade 7 mathematics in all middle schools, enabling students to better prepare for Algebra 1. They trimmed the size of high school Algebra 1 classes and reduced oversized high school classes in general. In funding these initiatives, I stood with the School Board in actualizing its goals to ensure that every child would be able to read independently by Grade 3 and to increase student success in Algebra by the end of Grade 9. 
     
  • Ensure that all-day Kindergarten is in every school. The all-day kindergarten expansion that I helped fund in 2000 was the impetus for the current push, now mandated by the state, for all-day kindergarten in all schools. This 2000 initiative restored all-day kindergarten to schools that had been cut in FY 1993 due to budget constraints, and increased all-day kindergarten from nine to seventeen MCPS schools.

    In FY 2002 we expanded the program to 28 schools-- establishing a pattern that has brought the total today to 73 MCPS schools, well ahead of the rest of the state.
     
  • Connect classrooms with technology to guarantee that all children are prepared for their future. My support for enhanced technology in schools has always been driven by my conviction that technology has the ability to bridge the divide in academic achievement among our students. The growth in the technology budget for MCPS during my tenure on the Council is an eloquent testimonial to my ability to implement my priorities. In 1986 the Council approved $5.6 million in funding for technology in the Operating Budget. By FY 2002 that part of the budget had quadrupled to $24 million.

    By far our boldest technology undertaking, however, was the Global Access Technology initiative that we started in 1995 and funded out of the Capital Budget. By FY 2002 in the Capital budget, the six-year plan had grown to $51 million. In addition to providing much-needed funds for teacher training in technology, this initiative is the reason why today’s teachers and children are able to connect to schools, offices, and the Internet through an MCPS wide-area network.

While we can take pride in what has been accomplished thus far, we cannot and must not rest. The achievement gap among our students remains, despite promising results from many of our program initiatives. We must continue to strengthen the school system’s partnership with Montgomery College to ensure a seamless continuum of educational opportunity. Access to further education is a virtual necessity today. I will continue to be active in my support for Montgomery College, long recognized as one of the nation’s best community colleges for the way it meets the County’s educational needs.

I have consistently worked in the public sector with the strong belief that each and every child can learn. All students need highly qualified teachers, support service personnel, and administrators who will maintain positive and safe learning environments while providing instruction that will prepare students for a variety of post graduation choices. We must continue to find and fund effective ways for our special needs youngsters to thrive and excel in our classrooms.

As County Executive I will continue my strong support for education consistent with my record on the County Council and my life-passion for education. I present myself to you as a leader with unique and unparalleled experience, combined with the passion and vision to keep us on the path of academic excellence for all of our children. I look forward to hearing from you regarding your concerns and ideas about our County’s future and specifically the challenges we face in providing the best education system possible for our children.

 

  Authorized by Friends of Ike Leggett: Lawrence N. Rosenblum, Treasurer
  Copyright © 2005