Rawlings-Blake Tackles Dropout Rates At The Elementary Level

A recent study of dropouts in Baltimore shows that for those who drop out, absences begin in elementary school. In Baltimore, 15 percent of elementary school kids miss more than 20 days a year. So the mayor is using the celebrity of being mayor “to encourage the students to come to school every day on time,” Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said. “Reaching numbers such as 98-99 percent daily attendance, they get it,” said Mark Gaither, Wolfe Academy principal. But even with such high numbers, the mayor tells these kids there is a city wide contest for the school that shows the best improvement in attendance. (WJZ)

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UMES jobs to go?

Food service operations could transfer from in-house to a private administrator that, in turn, would decide the employment fate of up to 80 workers at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore. The university is gearing up to issue requests for proposals to measure the cost-effectiveness of placing a private-sector vendor in charge of operations and management of all food-service activities on campus. (Daily Times)

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Community embraces Dunbar athletic facility amid blighted neighborhood 

Baltimore has its own real-life version of the cinematic triumph “Field of Dreams” playing out on the East Side this year. The first full season of action on the redeveloped football field at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School has sparked a rebirth of hope and pride at the campus, bringing the Poets’ maroon and gold to a new level of gridiron gravitas. “We went from zero to world class,” Lawrence Smith, head football coach at Dunbar, said of the string of sold-out games at the new facility at Latrobe Homes, the public housing projects on Aisquith and Eager streets. (Daily Record)

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Argyle students explore realities of running a business

For a few hours last week, seventh-grader Hirschel Nambiar was an executive at Box and Co., a box-making company started by students at Argyle Middle School in Silver Spring. His job only lasted a few hours, but Hirschel, 12, of Damascus, said he learned lessons he will use for life.“I learned how to start a business, how to run and business and how to keep it going,” Hirschel said. “All skills about our future.” (Gazette)

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Studio helps fill creative void for Prince George's students

What started as informal field trips for free art programs is growing into a multi-elementary school initiative: Art School After School. The after-school program shares the creative talents of a Mount Rainier art school with public schools across Prince George’s County. Abigail Lafertte sponsors the after-school Creative and Performing Arts Club at Thomas Stone Elementary School in Mount Rainier. She said she used to take the club members to the Art Works Studio School to take part in the classes. The nonprofit art school regularly provides free art programs, which were just what the students needed, she said. (Gazette)

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Around Crofton: Kindergartners set out to break reading record

 

The 90 kindergarten students who attend Crofton Elementary School, along with most of the kindergarteners in Anne Arundel County, set out to break a world record last week when millions of people around the globe celebrated literacy by reading the same book on the same day. Created by Jumpstart, a national early education organization, the “Read for the Record” program was first started in 2006 to highlight the need for quality early education in America. (Gazette)

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Odenton / Gambrills: Seven Oaks builds up STEAM

By now, most people in Anne Arundel County who have children in the public school system know what STEM means - science, technology, engineering and mathematics. But now, an Odenton school is tossing a new letter into that acronym - "A" for "arts." They kicked off the program by introducing the community to its Garden of Knowledge on Thursday.  “This is our first venture into STEAM, teaching through arts and science.” Seven Oaks Elementary School Principal John Ceschini said. “Arts energizes kids - we all need to make the art connection - it is good for 21st century skills, like critical thinking, problem solving, collaboration, and cross-cultural understanding.” (Gazette)

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Oct. 7 // Fight to keep the Common Core from being implemented in schools

Robert Small, the Howard County parent whose name became known from Maine to California when he protested new nationwide education standards, is part of a chorus of increasingly strident voices rising up against the initiative — from both ends of the political spectrum. The far right believes standards known as the Common Core will mean federal control of schools and a chance for the government to collect reams of information about every child, perhaps even fingerprinting them. Joining them from the far left are a group of parents and education advocates who are opposed to standardized testing in schools. (Balt. Sun)

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