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September Newsletter

Read below for news on:

  • Supporting Educators as the School Year Begins
  • Bmore Ready – Baltimore Beyond Graduation Round Table Recap
  • New Family Tip Sheets Available from GLR
  • Of Note; News and Updates

Supporting Educators as the School Year Begins

Baltimore City Public Schools educators, school leaders, students and families returned to a uniquely challenging learning environment earlier this month. Uncertainty around remote learning, access to technology, and the timing of when and how to resume in-person classes bring a new set of challenges to the adjustments and changes associated with the start of school.

Through all of this, one thing is certain: the educators and school leaders in Baltimore are doing everything possible to ensure that all students can access an excellent and engaging education – online or not. These incredible, selfless educators are committed to their students’ learning, and as a result, our community must be committed to supporting them.

We can – and should – show that support. Reach out – express your gratitude for their work. Even a brief email – just to say “thank you” – goes a long way to letting a teacher, principal or school staff member l know they are appreciated. Ask how you can help; volunteering, donating supplies or simply offering some guidance can have a huge impact on students.  Here are some ways to get involved:

  • The Fund continues to support City Schools in securing the technology necessary to keep kids learning remotely – focusing on purchasing laptops, and building a comprehensive internet access strategy. To learn more or support the Emergency School Closure fund, click here.
  • iMentor Baltimore is looking for 50 more men from the Baltimore community to serve as mentors for juniors at Academy for College and Career Exploration (ACCE) and Baltimore Design School. Sign up for an orientation.
  • The Baltimore Digital Equity Coalition launched a computer donation drive to collect, refurbish and distribute used devices. Learn more and donate devices here.

Now more than ever, what has always been true rings truer: educating a communities’ children takes commitment from all of us. This school year, let’s step up and support those making it happen.

Baltimore Beyond Graduation: Round Table Recap

On Thursday, August 27, the Fund for Educational Excellence and City Schools’ Navigator Center convened seven former City Schools students who have taken a variety of paths after high school graduation to discuss their experiences and give advice to current students.

Baltimore Beyond Graduation: Virtual Roundtable featured practical and insightful guidance for Baltimore City Schools students currently weighing their post-high school options. The panelists’ perspectives on their pathways, including two and four-year colleges, trade schools, and career mentorship programs, made for a compelling session with easily-implementable advice for students – as well as helpful reminders for all of us.

Click here to read our full webinar recap, including some of the panelists’ advice, and watch the full recording!

New Family Tip Sheets Available from the Baltimore Campaign for Grade Level Reading

Making sure that parents, care providers and communities have the resources to actively support student learning is a crucial component of a successful education. To support this effort, the Fund’s literacy-focused program, The Baltimore Campaign for Grade Level Reading (GLR), has partnered with Baltimore City Public Schools to create and distribute a series of helpful tip sheets for families of k-3 students. These resources let parents and community members know what students are studying in class and provide suggestions for activities and discussions that will support and reinforce that learning at home.

Tip sheets follow City Schools’ Wit and Wisdom literacy curriculum to align with classroom activities. New tip sheets will be available every quarter of the school year! To find the first set of tip sheets, click here.

To learn more about GLR’s work supporting early childhood literacy in Baltimore, visit www.gradelevelreadingbaltimore.org/.

Of Note:

Additional insights, updates and resources:

  • New board members: the Fund is excited to welcome Michele Hong, Program Manager for the Sayra and Neill Meyerhoff Center for Families, Children and the Courts, and Abhijeet Bhutra, Senior Institutional Advancement Officer at PNC, to our board. Each brings valuable experience and insights, and a passion for Baltimore, learning and helping our students reach their incredible potential.
  • Heads Up: MTA proposes significant cuts to bus routes in the Baltimore area with service changes to go into effect January 2021. MDOT MTA will hold 10 virtual public hearings for Local Bus between October 5 and October 16 about the proposed changes as part of a 30-day public comment period ending November 15. Learn more here
  • Big congratulations to Pete DeCandia, the Fund’s very own Program Director of Student Athlete Development and founder and CEO of Teacher Props, for being recognized as one of the Baltimore Business Journal’s 40 under 40 honorees – Baltimore Business Journal
  • Families: Need quick help accessing Zoom, Clever, Google, or other distance learning tools? Visit City Schools’ Distance Learning webpage featuring parent-friendly documents to help get on track – Baltimore City Public Schools 
  • Spread the word: Pratt Library has a variety of resources to support virtual learning this year, from device rentals to tutoring. Learn more here

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