Md. should fund police like it does schools: based on need

America's high-quality public schools have historically been seen as one of our great equalizers, yet it’s no secret that the quality of those public schools varies greatly depending on how they're funded. A rich county like Howard is naturally able to invest more in their schools than a poor city like Baltimore, where educational outcomes unsurprisingly lag behind the rest of the state. And, recognizing the injustice inherent to this system, Marylanders have taken steps to ensure the state corrects this funding inequity. My question: Why not take the same approach to public safety? (Balt. Sun)

Read Full Article

Making an obstacle an opportunity

Every business owner has faced an obstacle. Growing pains, not having enough capital, lack of time, or trouble finding good employees are just a few of them. Often, how a business owner responds to those obstacles can determine the business’s success. That’s why Rebecca Teaff, owner of Redstart Creative, believes business owners should turn obstacles into opportunity. She, along with other female business owners, will discuss the less than perfect aspects of business ownership that have helped propel their businesses to the next level at The Daily Record’s third annual Women’s Leadership Summit at Coppin State University on March 20. (Daily Record)

 

Read Full Article

Policing black Americans is a long-standing, and ugly, American tradition

In recent years, news cycle after news cycle has focused on Americans, many of them white, who took it upon themselves to police their black neighbors. A white Yale graduate student called campus police officers to report a black student sleeping in a common room. A white golf course proprietor called the police on a group of black women because, apparently, playing a round too slowly is a crime. Twelve-year-old Reggie Fields was reported to the police for mowing a lawn. Stephanie Sebby-Strempel ultimately pleaded guilty to third-degree assault after harassing an African American teenager who dared to go swimming while black. And on Feb. 26, 2012, George Zimmerman, a neighborhood vigilante, killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Fla. (Wash. Post)

Read Full Article

Let’s not fight over scraps in the Kirwan Commission education plan

Across Maryland, we have allowed ourselves to be divided when it comes to funding our schools. Urban versus rural. Rich versus poor. Baltimore versus everyone. This zero-sum scramble for resources leaves all of our kids at a disadvantage. Over the past few years, Maryland’s schools have fallen in nationwide rankings. Our economy lags behind neighboring states. And we are not delivering on our potential to lift our most vulnerable citizens out of poverty. We must do better. (Wash. Post)

Read Full Article

Education should focus on who students are, not what they are

After taking a required, online state assessment designed to select a career pathway for each student prior to entering high school, a rising ninth grade student asked me, "Mr. Payne, what does this mean?” I walked over to respond and saw the pathway assigned: Animal Production & Processing. I paused for a moment as I realized that the mandatory assessment software was recommending that this 14-year-old student should abandon his dream of becoming an architect, a dream he and I routinely discussed over the three years we had known each other, to pursue a high school regimen designed to send him into meat processing.

Read Full Article

People bought the ‘panhandler murder’ story because they think the worst of Baltimore

When authorities in Texas arrested a Harford County, Md., man and his daughter Sunday on murder charges in the fatal stabbing of the man’s wife — a slaying he said had happened when she was attacked by a panhandler — it tore a small hole in the facile and dark narrative that so easily and harmfully attaches itself to a city like Baltimore. (Wash. Post)

Read Full Article

Time Is Now for Ambitious Approach to Clean Energy in Maryland

Fifty percent off is good, but 100 percent off is better. When it comes to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, these are the stakes for our state. Marylanders deserve a plan that keeps energy costs low for homeowners and businesses, reduces greenhouse gas emissions and creates jobs. Senate Bill 516, the Maryland Clean Energy Jobs Act, is a great starting point for this conversation. The bill, which was discussed Tuesday at a Senate hearing in Annapolis and is up for a hearing in the House Friday, aims to increase the state’s Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard from 25 percent by 2022 to 50 percent by 2030. (Md. Matters)

Read Full Article

Addressing Racial Harm in a Systemic Way in Our Maryland

Shamefully, racism by another public official in the DMV just reared its ugly head — this time in our Maryland.  It’s going to take deep listening and urgent action by all of us to create the more equitable, inclusive community we seek. Last week, Maryland Delegate Mary Ann Lisanti was unanimously censured by her colleagues and stripped of all of her committee posts for using the N-word to describe a legislative district in Prince George’s County where almost 80 percent of the residents are black, as well as for her subsequent evasive and flippant responses. (Md. Matters)

 

Read Full Article