The following information can be found on the Howard County Public School System website here.

August 14th, 2019

The first day of school is fast approaching! Here’s what you need to know for the 2019-2020 school year.

Before Day One

School Calendar
Make sure you know when schools are closed or have scheduled early dismissals! There will be no printed 2019-2020 calendars. Staff, students and families may add our online calendar to their own mobile/online calendar by:

  • Going to
  • Scrolling down to Subscribing to a Calendar
  • Right-clicking on the calendar you wish to subscribe to
  • Selecting Copy Link Location/Address/Shortcut
  • Adding to your calendar of choice

You also may view and/or download printable PDFs of the full calendar and/or important dates only. Updates to the PDFs will be noted on the HCPSS calendar page. The calendar is subject to change. The online calendar reflects the most recent version.


All incoming kindergarteners and students new to the school system must be registered prior to the first day of school. Enrollment requirements can be found online. Please contact your child’s school for office hours.

All children must have the required State of Maryland immunizations in order to attend school. Students out of compliance or without evidence of an appointment for necessary immunizations may not be admitted to school. Details, including healthcare forms and immunization information, can be found online.

Emergency Card Procedures with Family File
HCPSS utilizes Family File for parents/guardians to complete emergency information. Each school year, parents/guardians must verify and/or update information for each child, and can do so by logging in to HCPSS Connect, selecting the Family File tab on the left and then selecting Family File. Resources and instructions are available online.

Student Schedules

  • August 14: High school student classes emailed to parents
  • August 28: Elementary school parents who have completed Family File can log in to HCPSS Connect to see homeroom teachers
  • August 31: All parents can log in to HCPSS Connect to view teachers and schedules

Bus Schedules
Our bus stop locator is now updated. Users can locate bus stops by entering their street address and zip code in the search field.

School Supplies
Elementary and middle school supply lists are available on school websites, and been compiled on the HCPSS website for your convenience. High school students will be given lists by their teachers at the start of the year. Please contact your child’s school with any questions.

Back to School Nights
The back to school night schedule for all HCPSS schools is available online. Last-minute changes may not be reflected online so please double check dates and times with your child’s school.

Student Drivers
All students drivers and a parent or guardian must attend a safe driving program in order for the student to get a parking permit. Students may attend a presentation at any location.

Important to Know

School Meals
Our Food and Nutrition Services webpage has information about meal prices, how to pay for meals, where to view menus, nutritional and allergen information, and more. Parents of students who qualify for Free and Reduced-Price Meals (FARMs) must submit a new application every school year. View program details and learn how to apply.

Participation in the FARMs program qualifies students for opportunities including free childcare services, free college applications, discounted internet through the Comcast Internet Essentials program, and more. Even if you don’t qualify for FARMs, students may be eligible for additional opportunities. Learn more online.

Student & Parent Handbook
The Student & Parent Handbook will no longer be printed and instead will be available online. The 2019-2020 Student & Parent Handbook will be available by early September.

The 2019-2020 Parent and Student Interscholastic Athletic Program Handbook, and additional athletic forms, are available on our Athletics page.

Staying In Touch

HCPSS News email messages and text alerts keep families up-to-date on news and events, and delivers real-time notices of bus delays, weather-related closings and emergency information. Parents/guardians of previously enrolled HCPSS students do not need to sign up for, or manage an HCPSS News account. All HCPSS News subscriptions are generated from the information provided in Family File and have been automatically updated for the 2019-2020 school year. Parents new to the system are automatically enrolled for email notification, and will be sent a text message to opt-in to text alerts.

Emergency Notifications
In times of emergency/weather closings, information will be shared with the community through our website, social media, text, email, weather hotline and HCPSS cable TV. A list of HCPSS emergency notification sources and details can be found online. All parents automatically receive email messaging and new parents need to opt in to text messaging (see above). Unsubscribing from any school or district email or text will unsubscribe you from all messaging, including emergency notifications.

HCPSS Mobile Application
The HCPSS mobile app delivers HCPSS system and school news (filterable to see news only from specific schools), upcoming events, school menus, information from Board of Education meetings, and direct connections to all system social media resources. The free HCPSS app is available on iTunes and Google Play.

Social Media Accounts
HCPSS has active accounts on FacebookTwitter and Instagram. Additionally, many of our schools use social media to communicate to their communities. Check with your school for details.

Additional Information

HCPSS Connect
HCPSS Connect provides access to a variety of student information and classroom instructional tools offering personalized communication and timely, relevant and easily accessible information relating to your student.

Entering Schools/Offices
Safety protocols are put in place for all visitors to schools or office buildings. Visitors must enter through the front door and sign in with our LobbyGuard visitor management system using a valid driver’s license.

Parent Volunteer Procedures
HCPSS values our volunteers and the contributions they make to our students and schools. Parents who wish to volunteer must complete a brief online training course and submit a certificate of completion to their school.

Getting to School Safely
Please review with your child safe practices for walking, biking or riding the bus to school. Resources on pedestrian and motorist safety can be found online.


Scott E