Maryland State Wire

Maryland State Wire

Friday, January 24, 2020

Governor's office releases $18.6 million for education initiatives

Schools

By Karen Kidd | Jul 8, 2018

Teacher
The funding includes $250,000 to encourage well-performing high school graduates in the state to become teachers. | File photo

Gov. Larry Hogan has announced $18.6 million in new education funding for initiatives and recommendations, including those by Maryland's Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education.

"Keeping our kids safe is one of our most important jobs," the governor said in a press release issued June 21 to coincide with the announcement of the new education funding. "This past session we enacted landmark school safety legislation to create aggressive, statewide standards for school safety, expand the work of the Maryland Center for School Safety, and require each school system in Maryland to develop assessment teams in order to identify potential safety threats. Working together, we can ensure greater safety in our schools and a greater sense of security for students and parents."

The governor's office also is working to fund recommendations by the state's Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education, commonly referred to as "the Kirwan Commission." The commission is informally named for its chair, former University of Maryland System Chancellor William E. “Brit” Kirwan, who was named to that seat in 2016 after the General Assembly created the commission to improve Maryland's public education funding.

The commission, which conducted public hearings last fall, issued its preliminary report in January. A final report is expected at year's end.

The funding in Hogan's announcement follows the 2018 legislative session, during which Hogan proposed an additional $125 million in school safety initiatives that would be funded through the governor's education lockbox proposal, which would provide $4.4 billion for education culled from casino revenues. That proposal is part of a referendum on November's ballot.

Part of the funding in Hogan's announcement last week will go toward the commission's initiatives. That will include $2.5 million for an early literacy program, $2 million for the Teaching Fellows for Maryland Scholarship, $250,000 to encourage well-performing high school graduates in the state to become teachers, $2 million for Career and Technical Education, and $120,000 for a special education study funding. The special education funding study is expected to be completed by September 2019, according to Hogan's announcement.

The funding in Hogan's announcement also included $40 million in school safety funding that had been restricted by the legislature in the budget, the announcement said. That amounts include $23.5 million in safety-related capital improvements; $10.6 million in grants to local school systems to enhance school safety; $3 million for the Maryland Center for School Safety; and $1 million for Hate Crime School Safety Grants.

"Keeping our kids safe is one of our most important jobs," Hogan said in the announcement. "This past session we enacted landmark school safety legislation to create aggressive, statewide standards for school safety, expand the work of the Maryland Center for School Safety, and require each school system in Maryland to develop assessment teams in order to identify potential safety threats. Working together, we can ensure greater safety in our schools and a greater sense of security for students and parents."

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