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June Newsletter

Tune in to WYPR’s On the Record June 30th for a Discussion about the Fund’s New Report NOT IN SERVICE

Tune in Wednesday, June 30th at 9:30 AM as Kwane Wyatt, Program Director of Analysis and Engagement, discusses the findings from our new report, NOT IN SERVICE, about how transportation affects Baltimore City Public Schools students’ education with WYPR’s Sheilah Kast for “On the Record!”

Listen to WYPR live, here, or set the dial to 88.1FM.

The Fund’s recent report examines how students experience public transportation in Baltimore and the implications that experience has for their education, employment, and other opportunities. In one-on-one interviews, 274 current Baltimore City Public School students reported long, multi-trip commutes, late arrivals, safety concerns, and more. NOT IN SERVICE culminates with a set of findings about transportation in Baltimore City and with recommendations – many directly from students – for improvements.

Since the report’s release earlier this month, the initial response has been impassioned and encouraging, with local media helping to spread the word about a pressing set of issues that will require cooperation between local government, the MTA, and City Schools to identify and implement solutions. Check out our recent blog recapping media coverage of the report, here: Positive Response for Our Latest Report, NOT IN SERVICE

Be sure to read our full report, including students’ stories, here:

Heart of the Schools Big Night Out at Bengies Drive-in Recap

On Wednesday, June 16th, hundreds of City Schools principals, district officials and their families joined the Heart of the Schools for a wonderful night out at Bengies Drive-in Theatre! Principals came together for a fun-filled night – many for the first time in a year – to celebrate the end of the school year. Those who attended caught up with colleagues and old friends at the pre-movie tailgate where they could listen to music, eat great food, enjoy some beer and wine, wait their turn for the highly sought-after balloon animals, and generally take a moment to relax before the start of the featured film: The Wiz! After a challenging year, the family-centered event gave school leaders and educators the opportunity to gather and celebrate their successes this past year in a relaxed and enjoyable space.

We are grateful for all who made this event possible – including Heart of the Schools sponsors and supporters, Baltimore City Public Schools, and the principals themselves – thank you! Take a look at some photos from the marvelous evening:

ICYMI: Blog Series Sharing Student and Educator Perspectives on the 2020-21 School Year

A year ago, the Fund asked Baltimore City Public Schools students, teachers, and principals to share their experience shifting to distance learning. In our recent blog series, the Fund followed up with the same individuals a year later for their perspective on the 2020-2021 school year. Check it out here.

Of Note:

Additional insights, updates and resources:

  • The Post COVID Classroom: Dr. Sonja Santelises, City Schools CEO, joined Tom Hall on WYPR’s Midday to discuss lessons from virtual teaching, preparations for a Fall return to class, plus transit and facility issues. Listen here.
  • The Mayor’s office is seeking candidates to fill three vacancies on the Board of School Commissioners. They are holding an info session today, June 28 at 5:00 PM. Webex link here. (Event #:173 907 3440. Password: schools).
  • Village Learning Place is looking for volunteers for the 2021-22 school year for their mentoring pilot program LINK (Let’s Invest In Neighborhood Kids) Leaders, an after-school program for 7th–12th graders. Learn more here.
  • Reconnect, Restore, Reimagine are the guiding goals to reopen City Schools for the 2021-2022 school year. To find out more information and share your input click here.

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