Do You Want Your Child to Remain Virtual During the 2021-22 School Year?

Wed, 04/21/2021 - 6:11pm

Commitment Form is Due by May 5 at 4 p.m.

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Read below for information about:

     A. Overview - The Digital Education Center (DEC)
     B. Deadlines and What it means to commit your child to the DEC
     C. Accessing and Completing the DEC commitment form
  D. I need help. Who do I contact?

A. Overview - Digital Education Center

The Howard County Public School System is planning for a full-time online option for students entering grades K-12 who wish to learn virtually for the 2021-2022 school year. Once finalized, the Digital Education Center (DEC) program will give students the opportunity to take classes and earn credits virtually, while receiving support services from both the DEC and their assigned home school. DEC students will continue to be enrolled in their assigned home school and will be able to participate in athletics and activities at that school if/as schedules and transportation allows.

B. Deadlines and What it Means to Commit Your Child to the DEC

Parents/guardians who wish to commit to the DEC should log in to HCPSS Connect Synergy by Wednesday, May 5 at 4 p.m. (see directions below). Families must commit to the DEC for the full 2021-2022 school year. Students who wish to return to in-person learning during the 2021-2022 school year, if that option is available, should not sign up for the DEC. The Superintendent and Board of Education members have stressed that they consider the return to normalized, five-day, in-person learning this fall to be essential for the majority of HCPSS students, however, an official decision on the 2021-2022 academic year has not yet been made.

In committing to the DEC, parents/guardians acknowledge that:
  • This is a commitment that your child will attend the DEC for the 2021-2022 school year, and that students will need to go through the reassignment process if they choose to return to their home school for instruction. 
  • Not all course requests may be able to be honored in the DEC environment. 

  • There are attendance requirements that will apply in the DEC environment. 

  • The implementation of the DEC is pending funding from the HCPSS Board of Education. Should funding not be provided, students automatically will be returned to their assigned home school. 

Prior to making any decision, we strongly encourage families to review:

Families who commit to the DEC will be contacted by DEC staff in the coming weeks to review student courses prior to final enrollment for the 2021-2022 school year. This decision has no impact for students on the current school year. 

C. Accessing and Completing the DEC Commitment Form

  1. Log in to HCPSS Connect Synergy using parent/guardian credentials:
  2. Select More Options from the left panel
  3. Select Digital Education Center Commitment from the middle of the page
  4. Complete the questions in the form for each child and select “save”

​See the visuals below, for step by step directions with images.

D. I Need Help. Who Do I Contact?