Legislators Pledge Focus to Kirwan Goals, Despite Hogan’s Wariness

Following Governor Hogan's comments at the MACo Summer Conference, several legislative leaders restated their commitment to a new school funding plan. When Governor Hogan spoke at the closing session of MACo's Summer Conference, he raised his concerns with the costs of the pending recommendations from the Kirwan Commission on school funding. Citing the potential for major tax increases driven by these costs, the Governor said he would not support any such sweeping tax increases. Unsurprisingly,…

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Montgomery Set to Unveil State-of-the-Art Library, Community Rec Center

Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich and Council President Nancy Navarro will preside over a ribbon-cutting ceremony to officially open the new Wheaton Library and Community Recreation Center on Sunday, September 8th at 2 p.m. The $70.9 million project and 92,000-square foot building is the first combined complex of its kind in Montgomery County, which will include a library, community recreation center, Friends of the Library used bookstore, park, underground parking garage and redesigned roadway. The…

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The Changing Face of Education at #MACoCon

A MACo Summer Conference session gives an overview of what’s happening and what’s to come as Maryland redesigns the statewide commitment to public education. The [Kirwan] Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education was formed in 2016 to answer two questions: Should the state revise current education funding formulas? And, what major new education policies must be enacted to put Maryland public schools on par with the best in the world? While the Commission has…

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Rural County Coalition Talks Preemption, Solar Siting, & Kirwan at 2019 Summer #MACoCon

The Rural County Coalition received policy updates on solar siting and education funding issues at its 2019 MACo Summer Conference breakfast on August 15. Maryland Secretary of Natural Resources Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio gave some brief welcoming remarks. MACo Legal and Policy Counsel Les Knapp then provided an update on two recent implied preemption cases involving the residential application of pesticides and the siting of large solar facilities. Knapp noted that while the courts found in favor…

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New Apprenticeship Program Gives Students in Prince George’s Bridge Into Trade Careers

A new registered apprenticeship program through Prince George's County High School affords high school students the opportunity to learn a trade, be paid for the work they perform, receive college coursework credit, and the potential for job placement once they've completed high school and the program. From The Washington Post: In a program described as a first in the state, Wilson and other teenagers in Prince George’s County are paired with employees from their school…

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State Awards $11.7 Million for Judy Center Early Learning Hubs

The Maryland State Department of Education’s Division of Early Childhood announced that it has awarded 24 grants to serve 53 elementary schools in Maryland. Each of the state’s 24 jurisdictions has been funded for one or more Judy Center Early Learning Hubs (Judy Centers). The grant, which totals $11,700,000, provides two-generational program supports to children and families and helps achieve the goal of all children entering kindergarten ready to succeed, regardless of income. According to…

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School Formula Commission Continues: Focus on Equity, Regional Costs, MOE

The "Blueprint for Maryland" formula workgroup met this week, continuing its look at components of current and potential school funding models - but isn't making any decisions yet. The latest meeting of the Kirwan Commission's formula funding workgroup was August 1, and the members dug into several areas of school funding. Their discussions remained expository and preliminary, as the group has not yet turned the corner into taking votes or making even foundation-level decisions. The…

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Frederick Launches Strategic Plan: Poised for Prosperity, Planning for Progress!
County Executive Jan Gardner (photo courtesy of Frederick County Government)
Frederick Launches Strategic Plan: Poised for Prosperity, Planning for Progress!

Frederick County Executive Jan Gardner last week unveiled a new strategic plan designed to build on the County's accomplishments with an eye towards fresh ideas and new opportunities. The plan focuses on five key priorities: education, jobs, seniors, community needs, and growth. “Frederick County is poised for the future!” County Executive Gardner said. “We have exceptional schools, a safe community, a thriving economy with thousands of new jobs over the past few years, and a…

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State Board of Education Elects New President

The Maryland State Board of Education this week unanimously elected Brigadier General Warner I. Sumpter, USA, Ret. as president and Jean Halle as vice president for 2019-2020. General Sumpter has served professionally and as a volunteer for over 50 years in federal, state, county, and community positions. Vice President Halle brings over 30 years of experience in executive positions in education, business, and professional services to inform her work with the State Board of Education.…

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