Tag Woodward High School

See what Woodward High School is going to look like

Charles W. Woodward High School will be a holding facility for Northwood High School while Northwood HS undergoes a renovation/replacement at their current site from September 2023 to August 2025.

Woodward High School will then be reopened September 2025. MCPS Division of Capital Planning will start the process of a boundary study to determine who will go to Woodward High School 18 months prior to the opening of school.

The size of the school will be 27.31 acres (for reference, Bethesda-Chevy Chase HS is 16.36 acres, Walter Johnson HS is 30.86 acres). However, significant topographic change within the site limits the use of flat area for site amenities.

The new Woodward HS building will be designed for a capacity of 2,700 students.

The proposed building is terraced into the existing grades to minimize excavation and has a 3-story portion along Old Georgetown Road and a 4-story portion near athletic fields

Construction is expected to start in January 2021, if all approvals are granted by the Montgomery County Planning Board (there’s work to do there).

County passes capital budget that includes funding for Woodward re-opening

The Montgomery County Council voted unanimously to approve the County’s $5.8 billion Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 Operating Budget and a $4.4 billion FY21-26 Capital Improvements Program (CIP) to fund school construction, infrastructure improvements and community projects. The Council’s focus throughout its budget work was on providing continuity of services for County government and residents.

“The Council’s approach to this budget was unlike any other,” said Council President Sidney Katz. “We had a singular goal—continuity of service. Like households across our community, we had to limit our spending and control budget growth. The $5.8 billion operating budget and the $4.4 billion capital budget provides stability for our residents and our workforce, while we await a clearer picture of expenses and revenues that will emerge during the summer and fall. We all recognize that there will be more work to do to meet the ongoing public health and financial needs caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.”

The County’s $4.4 billion Capital Improvements Program provides funding to address the County’s most urgent building needs. Some items of note in the CIP include keeping the reopening of Woodward High School and the Northwood High School Addition/Facility Upgrade on schedule. Thank you to the County Council for keeping this vital project on track.

Our letter to County Council about funding the opening of Woodward

Dear Councilmember:

On behalf of the 2,000 residents, businesses, and property owners who are members of Friends of White Flint, we ask you to ensure that the re-opening of Woodward High School remains on track so that the Pike District/White Flint area can get out of moratorium July 1.

While we appreciate the many budgetary issues caused by the economy and pandemic, it is essential that the Pike District/White Flint area get out from under the damaging building moratorium caused by the capacity issues at Walter Johnson High School. In order for both White Flint and Montgomery County to fulfill their economic potential, Woodward High School must open on schedule and not be delayed. As you know, the residential development moratorium prevents the County from collecting much-needed school impact taxes, taxes which account for a significant portion of the school construction budget. There are multiple developments ready to build but who cannot start construction due to the moratorium.

We ask you to support the construction of a holding facility at Woodward for Northwood High School to use between September 2023 to August 205 and then reopening Woodward High School after Northwood departs. Funding a new Woodward High School will lift the moratorium in the White Flint/Pike District area and address the over-capacity issues at Walter Johnson High School.


Thwarting the county’s transit-oriented development strategy by limiting construction in the White Flint/Pike District area with a continuing building moratorium would be short-sighted and devastating. As many councilmembers have noted, fulfilling the incredible promise of the 2010 White Flint sector plan is crucial for the economic vitality of Montgomery County. Redevelopment cannot occur in the White Flint area while the moratorium is in place, so it is important for all of Montgomery County that Woodward High School is fully funded to lift the moratorium on July 1.

Thank you in advance for ensuring the economic health of Montgomery County, supporting transit-oriented development, and allowing the promise of the White Flint sector plan to be fulfilled by funding the rebuilding of Woodward High School using the original timetable.

Amy Ginsburg, Executive Director

Curious about the re-opening of Woodward High School?

Montgomery County Public Schools’ (MCPS) Division of Construction is wrapping up the Schematic Design phase and beginning the Design Development phase for the reopening of Charles W. Woodward High School project.

In previous work sessions, in which the designs of building and site amenities were discussed, they received a lot of helpful feedback and input from various stakeholders and agencies. In an effort to continue community engagement, they will hold another community work session to share how the project is developing, and what has been discussed and considered with other agencies.

Reopening Project Community Work Session Date: Tuesday, January 21st, 2020 Time: 6:30 pm Location: Tilden Middle School Media Center 11211 Old Georgetown Road Rockville, Maryland 20852

If you have any questions regarding this process please contact Ms. Shiho Shibasaki, project manager, at 240-314-1000

More on Woodward

From Bethesda Beat

At a meeting on Monday, staff members showed updated plans for the roughly $120 million project that will serve about 2,700 students.

The new plans show two phases of construction. The first will include renovating the building for use as a temporary school for Northwood High School students from 2023 to 2025 as Northwood undergoes an extensive renovation. Then, in 2025, Woodward will reopen as a new MCPS high school, complete with athletic facilities.

The square building has a large central courtyard, to be used for performances, teaching and casual activities. Staff members are considering dividing the courtyard area into smaller sections, possibly including an amphitheater, a terrace and seating.

The school, proposed to include a performing arts magnet program, has arts space on all three floors.

Many of the classroom spaces will be “flexible,” with movable walls to create classrooms that “respond to the school’s needs.”

Read the rest of the article on Bethesda Beat.

Montgomery Council Member Questions Purpose of Woodward High School

From Bethesda Beat

Council member Andrew Friedson, who represents Bethesda, pressed MCPS Superintendent Jack Smith in the letter on “unexplained changes in philosophy” not relayed to the council as school system leaders explore the idea of including a performing arts magnet program at the facility.

Woodward, on Old Georgetown Road, currently is a temporary home for Tilden Middle School and will later hold Northwood High School students while their school undergoes extensive renovations. When Northwood students move back to their permanent school, Woodward is expected to reopen as a new high school.

The County Council has allocated $120 million to the Woodward renovation project, but was unaware of Montgomery County Public Schools’ vision of an arts magnet program, Friedson said.

“In addition to the significant delay for Woodward alleviating overcrowding at [Walter Johnson] … this latest revelation appears to be yet another backtracking of commitments made to the community,” Friedson wrote. “… This process raises broader concerns about communication, sufficient public input, and questionable planning.”

In a statement, MCPS Chief Operating Officer Andrew Zuckerman said plans for Woodward are preliminary and “no decisions have been made yet with respect to the academic programming or site amenities.”

At a school board meeting this week, MCPS staff said Woodward, when reopened, could be the first high school without an athletic stadium, which also concerned Friedson.

If MCPS includes a traditional athletic stadium at Woodward, along with baseball and softball fields, the school would lose all of its available parking spaces and be forced to build a parking garage, estimated to cost $50 million, according to the school system’s staff.

Read the rest of the article here.

Architect Selected for Woodward High Renovation Project

From Bethesda Beat

The Montgomery school board plans to funnel $125 million into renovating the former Charles W. Woodward High School in Rockville and on Monday appointed a Calverton architectural firm to lead the design process.

Grimm and Parker Architecture Inc. was selected as the “most qualified firm to provide the necessary … services,” according to school board documents. The board will pay Grimm and Parker about $6.2 million for its services.

Known as a holding school, Woodward is next scheduled to house students from Northwood High School in Silver Spring, which is slated for a $123 million expansion to begin in 2023, and students will be moved off-site during construction.

Read the rest of the article at Bethesda Beat.

Arts Magnet Program Considered for Woodward High School

From Bethesda Beat

The county school board is exploring using the former Charles W. Woodward High School in Rockville for the first countywide secondary-level arts magnet program and has turned to the former chief executive of the Strathmore arts center to lead a committee studying options.

Woodward, on Old Georgetown Road, is the current home for Tilden Middle School students while their building is being remodeled and expanded.

Known as a holding school, Woodward is next scheduled to house students from Northwood High School in Silver Spring, which is slated for a $123 million expansion to begin in 2023, and students will be moved off-site during construction.

Smith said the school system will convene an “exploratory committee” to determine what the program at Woodward might look like and how it would be best implemented.

Smith said the school system will convene an “exploratory committee” to determine what the program at Woodward might look like and how it would be best implemented.

The committee will be chaired by Eliot Pfanstiehl, former chief executive officer of the Strathmore performing arts theater in North Bethesda.

What do you think? Should Woodward be renamed Josiah Henson?

County Council President Hans Riemer and Catherine Leggett are teaming up to propose renaming the former Woodward High School after the Rev. Josiah Henson, who was enslaved on a plantation near the North Bethesda school.

Montgomery County Public Schools plans to overhaul and reopen the high school on Old Georgetown Road to relieve crowding in the Walter Johnson High School cluster and in the Downcounty Consortium. The school is currently accommodating students from Tilden Middle, whose building is being modernized. The Tilden project should be completed by 2019, and Woodward High is slated to reopen in 2022, the letter from Riemer and Leggett stated.

Read more on Bethesda Beat.