About us

One Montgomery is a grassroots advocacy group committed to ensuring excellence and equity for all students in Montgomery County Public Schools. The six principles that guide our advocacy are Equity, Leadership, Access, Diversity, Community, and Partnership.

A brief history

One Montgomery was founded in 2013 by a group of parents, teachers, students, and community leaders to raise awareness about segregation and inequality in Montgomery County Public Schools, and to promote equitable policies.

Selected activities during 2013-2017:

  • Organized community workshops to listen to citizen concerns and share data about MCPS performance
  • Held panel discussions with education experts to discuss importance of leadership in education
  • Interviewed candidates for 2014 and 2016 BOE elections; endorsed and supported equity candidates
  • Worked jointly with other like-minded organizations to promote initiatives and candidates that support our mission
  • Participated in a wide range of community events to listen to and inform residents (East County forum, Paint Branch High School community day, Springbrook cluster meeting, Wheaton non-profit forum)
  • Engaged hundreds if not thousands of Montgomery County residents to become more involved in our schools.

Why reactivate One Montgomery now?

Montgomery County Public Schools is at a crossroads. While much work has been done towards achieving excellence and equity across the board, the achievement gap persists. The Board of Education must take bolder steps before too many more children leave the public school system ill-prepared for college or careers, and able to fully participate in our economy.

We aim to be in this fight, as it is not only just and right, but in fact critical to the future success of our economy and society. We are inspired by the work and words of Thurgood Marshall who fought for integrated schools all his life: “Where you see wrong or inequality or injustice, speak out, because this is your country. This is your democracy. Make it. Protect it. Pass it on.”

About Montgomery County’s district-wide boundary analysis

We specifically support an analysis commissioned by the Montgomery County Board of Education of school capacity and school boundaries because we believe that today’s school boundaries unnecessarily foster racial and economic isolation of students. This segregation comes with a price tag, because the county has many overcrowded schools sitting next to underused schools. Limited boundary changes between adjacent schools would both provide greater student integration and at the same time mean fewer portable classrooms at some schools and fewer empty classrooms at others. Our website has information related to the analysis and the effects of segregation on students.

It is important to note that it was Montgomery County students who first called for a boundary analysis, saying that they did not want to go to racially and economically isolated schools when they live in one of the most diverse counties in the country.

We were appalled and dismayed by the behavior of those who oppose the analysis at a community informational meeting at Julius West Middle School in December 2019. We were propelled to action by this event, and by our belief that in fact we all benefit with a public-school system that is more integrated in every way.

After that event, we circulated a petition that garnered more than 1,000 signatures in support of the analysis.

Who we are

For now, One Montgomery operates largely by a rough consensus, which means there is no real hierarchy or spokesperson. Some of us have been engaged in Montgomery County’s civic life for many years and are well known members of other organizations; others are new to civic engagement. We all believe that we have a responsibility to help create the kind of place we want to live and we strive to maintain a civil discourse grounded in facts.

We are parents, teachers, and community members who have graduated from or have children and family members who have attended or graduated from the following high school clusters: Blair, Blake, Einstein, Gaithersburg, Magruder, Northwest, Northwood, Paint Branch, Quince Orchard, Richard Montgomery, Seneca Valley, Sherwood, Wheaton, and Wootton. The following is a list of people who are proud to associate themselves with One Montgomery:

  • Fred Azcarate
  • Deborah Beck
  • Pam Bruce-Staskal
  • Karin Chenoweth
  • David Fishback
  • Eric Fowler 
  • Brigid Howe
  • Kathleen Indart
  • Cara Jackson
  • Troy Jacobs
  • Sarah Kessler
  • Brian Kramer
  • Anika Manzoor
  • Gina McNeal
  • Jill Ortman-Fouse
  • Lori Marcus Post
  • Dan Reed
  • Laura Stewart
  • Alan Zibel

If you are interested in joining us, please sign our petition, take the time to be informed about key issues, and VOTE!

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