Kirwan Commission Seeks Public Input

The [Kirwan] Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education is inviting representatives of Statewide and local organizations, as well as members of the general public, to participate in a public hearing on November 29, 2018.

Known as the Kirwan Commission because it is chaired by former University System Chancellor Brit Kirwan, the Commission is set to recommend the first major revision to Maryland’s school funding formula since the Bridge to Excellence in Public Schools Act passed in 2002, potentially shaping pre-K-12 education in the state for a decade or more.

Public Hearing – Thursday, November 29 – Annapolis, Maryland

3:00-5:00 p.m. Representatives of Statewide or local organizations testifying on behalf of
the organization (in Room 120 House Office Building)

5:30-7:30 p.m. Members of the public including those affiliated with organizations
(including above) but not speaking on behalf of the organizations (in the Joint Hearing Room Legislative Services Building)

Sign-up Procedures

To sign up for either timeframe, by 12:00 noon on November 29, send an email to: or call Sarah Bice at (410) 946-5510/(301)970-5510.

Sign-up sheets will also be available the day of the hearing.

Please provide the following information: (1) name and contact information and (2) if you are speaking on behalf of a group, please include the name of the group.

Testimony will generally be limited to 3 minutes per person, however, the Chair has the discretion to make adjustments depending on how many people sign up. While it is not necessary to bring a written statement, if you do, please bring 60 copies with you to the hearing. Staff will collect and distribute it to the commission members. If you are unable to attend but wish to submit written testimony, you may email your testimony to the email address listed above.

Note: The Commission will also hold a regularly scheduled meeting from 9:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m. on November 29.

MACo advocates for a partnership approach to meeting the education and facility needs of Maryland’s students that fairly balances state responsibilities with local obligations, and seeks equitable and efficient solutions to meet current expenses and future goals.

The 2016 Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education was created by legislation introduced in the General Assembly. The Commission membership parallels that of the earlier Thornton Commission.

The Commission was originally set to complete its work in time for the 2018 session of the General Assembly, but last October asked for an extension when it became clear the deadline was not realistic. Prior to breaking for the 2018 legislative session, the Commission released a preliminary report detailing its preliminary recommendations.

MACo is entitled to two representatives on the Commission, under the legislation. Montgomery County Councilmember Craig Rice, MACo’s Education Subcommittee Chair, and Allegany County Commissioner Bill Valentine, MACo’s Education Subcommittee Vice Chair, represent MACo on the Commission.

Please contact Kevin Kinnally at MACo with any questions regarding the public heating.

Useful Links

Previous Conduit Street Coverage of the [Kirwan] Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education