Maryland’s First Inspector General of Education

Governor Larry Hogan appointed Maryland's first Inspector General of Education, Richard P. Henry, under terms of legislation passed last year. From Governor Hogan's Press Release: “For five years, our administration has been working hard to root out corruption, wrongdoing, and the mismanagement of state tax dollars by local school systems,” said Governor Hogan. “With the appointment of the first Inspector General for Education in state history, we are reaffirming our commitment to providing more accountability…

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Howard County Adopts Updated WalkHoward Plan

Howard County Council unanimously adopted an updated plan for WalkHoward, which provides vision, framework, and guidance for improving walkability and pedestrian access in the county. Recommended improvements for the WalkHoward plan were rated using a prioritization method that considered access to important destinations for county residents. Equity considerations, such as income and unemployment, were also used to recommend improvements. From Howard County's website: “Following the passage of our Complete Streets resolution, it was important to…

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Congressman Introduces Legislation to Help Locals Address Cybersecurity
Congressman C. A. Dutch Ruppersberger
Congressman Introduces Legislation to Help Locals Address Cybersecurity

U.S. Representative and former MACo President C. A. Dutch Ruppersberger introduced legislation with a bipartisan sponsor line that will help local governments address cybersecurity vulnerabilities. This legislation would authorize a new grant program at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to address potential cybersecurity vulnerabilities on local government networks. From Ruppersberger's Press Release: “Hackers are increasingly targeting state and local governments, as we painfully learned in Baltimore last year, where a ransomware attack cost the…

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Maryland Tech Council Expands to Frederick County

The Maryland Tech Council will expand offices to Frederick County in order to serve the growing needs of its members. Maryland Tech Council is developing a workforce coalition in Frederick County designed to tackle the issue of human capital. Marty Rosendale, CEO of Maryland Tech Council, says the expansion is very strategic and that Frederick is experiencing an abundant amount of growth in biomanufacturing. From Business Wire: "We’re thrilled that the Maryland Tech Council is…

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Montgomery Becomes First U.S. County with Hairstyle Discrimination Ban
Montgomery County Council Member Will Jawando
Montgomery Becomes First U.S. County with Hairstyle Discrimination Ban

On February 6, Montgomery County officially became the first United States county to ban discrimination based on hairstyles. The unanimous vote by Montgomery County Council ensure protection against discrimination based on hairstyles under the CROWN (Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair) Act. Originally introduced by Montgomery County Council member Will Jawanda and Council President Nancy Navarro, this legislation will prohibit discrimination based on natural hairstyles such as braids, locks, afros, curls and…

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Self-Driving Mass Transit has Arrived
The EasyMile EZ10 autonomous vehicle in use in Columbus. (Kevin Miller/Bloomberg News)
Self-Driving Mass Transit has Arrived

The South Linden neighborhood of Columbus, Ohio will be the first to experience a daily, public residential autonomous shuttle. For the next year, residents of South Linden will be able to ride the self driving shuttle on a route that extends almost three miles. The shuttle was one of several projects to arise from the Smart Cities Challenge, which was aimed at encouraging midsize cities to develop advanced transportation modes using electric and autonomous vehicles.…

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Student Homelessness at an All-Time High

A new report from the National Center for Homeless Education shows that homelessness for students has increased by 11% over the previous years data. In 2017-18 school year, over 1.5 million children and youth were homeless, with the number of students sleeping in cars, parks, and on streets more than doubling. There were only five states that saw a reduction of 10% or more in homelessness (Hawaii, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, and South Carolina). Maryland's student…

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GPA Predicts College Success 5x Better than ACT Scores

A recent study published in the Educational Researcher journal demonstrated that a students high school grade point average (GPA) predicts college graduation rates five times more accurately than ACT scores. The study examined over 55,000 students who graduated from Chicago Public School and immediately attended a four-year college, with the GPA correlation remaining consistent regardless of which school the student attended. Findings show that each incremental increase in GPA improved the odds of college graduation…

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Revived Labor Day School Fight

This week, Governor Hogan introduced the Universal School Start Act of 2020, which would require that Maryland public schools begin after Labor Day. HB 743/SB 558, would repeal legislation from last year, allowing all of Maryland's 24 individual school boards to be in charge of their own start and end dates. The bill would also codify Governor Hogan's executive order from 2016 for schools to complete the 180 days that are required under state law…

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All Bay Bridge Lanes to be Open by Summer 2020
In 2018, MES scanned more than 700 bridges providing detailed analysis and reporting for the MDOT State Highway Administration. (Photo: coastalpics)
All Bay Bridge Lanes to be Open by Summer 2020

Governor Hogan announced that all lanes at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge will be open this summer as westbound work will be completed a year ahead of schedule. With over 27 million drivers crossing the bridge annually, the revitalization project's progress is exciting to many. From MDTA's Press Release: “I am pleased to announce that this project will be completed a full year ahead of schedule, and that all lanes on the Bay Bridge will be…

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