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Maryland schools:

    Many of Maryland’s most populous districts are set to welcome some students back for in-person instruction Monday, marking the start of varying local plans in response to Gov. Larry Hogan’s push to reopen schools by March 1. Maryland had the lowest percentage of in-person instruction operating in the nation at 10 percent as of Sunday, according to Burbio, a community event tracker. That number is expected to change drastically come Monday, when Montgomery County, Anne Arundel County, Howard County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Harford County, and other smaller counties will bring some students back to school. Prince George’s County became the final school district in the state to submit a reopening plan, early last week, detailing the return of students in April. The number of days per week of in-person instruction varies in each district, with the most popular option being twice a week. The schools will start with some...
    Parents of students in D.C. public schools will soon have a better idea of what summer options are available for their children. During a virtual hearing with the city council’s Committee of the Whole on combating learning loss due to the coronavirus pandemic, Deputy Mayor for Education Paul Kihn said parents can begin signing up for the Mayor Marion S. Barry Summer Youth Employment Program. The city extended the deadline for signing up until March 6. Starting March 22, parents will be able to sign up their children for Department of Parks and Recreation camps, some of which will offer academic elements aimed at helping children combat a loss in learning. Kihn said more information on those camps will be released on March 8. “We know students go to those programs and love them, and that’s why we’re choosing, over the summer, to spend a lot of energy trying to...
    TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — As some Baltimore County Public Schools students will resume in-person learning beginning March 1, the school system will be modifying its meal distribution program. Under the new plan, all elementary school students returning for in-person hybrid instruction will be offered in-person onsite meals. Students will receive two days of meals in-person and will be eligible for curbside meals on the alternative days. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines On the days when students are in school, they will either eat in the cafeteria, seated by small groups, socially distanced, or meals will be delivered to their classrooms. Curbside meal distribution will be available for all virtual students and for hybrid students when they are not receiving in-person instruction. Curbside meal distribution is available at all middle and high schools as well as selected...
    EASTON, Md. (WJZ) — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan visited a Talbot County elementary school Friday morning as students across the state are set to begin returning to classrooms in some capacity next week. Hogan and State Superintendent of Schools Karen Salmon sat down with students at Easton Elementary School, which previously reopened to students. READ MORE: Masks Will Be Required In Schools, Including Classrooms, Gyms, Hallways, Gov. Larry Hogan Says Gov. Larry Hogan reads to students at Easton Elementary School on February 26, 2021. Pool photo. The children were seen wearing masks and practicing social distancing. Masks will be required in schools. Hogan said it’s a hopeful time. “I’m hopeful to see kids back in the classrooms and learning, and that’s what we want, we want to get our kids back in school, we want to get all of our businesses open, we want to get people back to work...
    By PATRICK HAUF of Capital News Service Many of Maryland’s most populous districts are set to welcome some students back for in-person instruction Monday, marking the start of varying local plans in response to Gov. Larry Hogan’s push to reopen schools by March 1. Maryland had the lowest percentage of in-person instruction operating in the nation at 10 percent as of Sunday, according to Burbio, a community event tracker. That number is expected to change drastically come Monday, when Montgomery County, Anne Arundel County, Howard County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Harford County, and other smaller counties will bring some students back to school. Prince George’s County became the final school district in the state to submit a reopening plan, early last week, detailing the return of students in April. The number of days per week of in-person instruction varies in each district, with the most popular option being twice a...
    MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — Maryland’s largest school system is about to become the country’s biggest operator of electric school busses. Montgomery County Public Schools says it will add a total of over 300 electric busses to the fleet of 1,400 vehicles over the coming years, with a goal to be all-electric by 2025. READ MORE: Southwest Airlines Adding Flights From BWI Airport To Destin-Fort Walton Beach, Florida The just over $1 million annual contract shows the school system will pay a fee to lease the buses from a Massachusetts-based company. READ MORE: Downtown Partnership BOOST Program Accepting Applications For Grants Of Up To $50K To Fill Empty Storefronts The first 25 electric buses will be out on the roads this fall and increase each year. MORE NEWS: University Of Maryland College Park Students Are Supposed To Be Sequestering Due To COVID-19. A Student Says They Arent  
    FREDERICK, Md. (WJZ) — A 42-year-old Frederick man was found guilty of voter intimidation Wednesday for leaving a letter in a mailbox that threatened then-presidential and vice presidential candidates Joe Biden and Kamala Harris and their supporters, the Frederick County State’s Attorney’s Office said. Judge Eric William Schaffer also found James Dale Reed not guilty of a county of making a threat of mass violence in the incident and sentenced him to two years behind bars with all but time served suspended. He will also spend three years on supervised probation. READ MORE: Baltimore City Schools To Offer Weekly COVID-19 Testing For Students, Staff Reed had been accused of leaving a letter in the mailbox of a home on Kline Avenue in Frederick in October. The letter read in part: “This is a warning to anyone reading this letter if you are a Biden/Harris supporter you will be targeted. We...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — As schools across Maryland prepare for students to return to the classroom in some form, Baltimore City Public Schools plans to offer weekly COVID-19 testing for all students and staff members. The tests will be offered to people regardless of whether they are showing symptoms of the virus or not in an effort to provide early detection of possible cases. READ MORE: Marijuana Legalization Proposed In Maryland Legislature City Schools CEO Dr. Sonja Santelises said the testing will complement other efforts like social distancing, personal protective equipment and cleaning. Under the current plan, elementary and middle school students and staff members will swab themselves. Results at the elementary school level will be pooled by classroom, and if a classroom pool has a positive test, all of its students and staff will need to quarantine. The tests will then be picked up by a mobile lab from the...
    TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — It’s a clash over reopening schools in Baltimore County- some teachers are concerned about their safety, but some parents want their kids back in the classroom. In less than one week, Baltimore County Public Schools will reopen their doors for the first time in nearly a year. “We want all of our kids back in school,” Sean Kammer, a Baltimore County Public Schools parent, said. “It’s past due time.” CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines Parents say their kids are ready. “We were willing to do what we needed to do to protect our citizens, but we feel the time has passed and we need to get back in school,” Amy Adams, a Baltimore County Public Schools parent, said. Parents stood outside West Towson Elementary School Tuesday night, calling for an end to virtual...
    Educators in Montgomery County, Maryland, held a car parade protest against returning to work Tuesday. The Montgomery County Board of Education voted Feb. 9 to return to in-person instruction Mar. 1 for for special needs and technical education students, and Mar. 15 for all other students, according to WTOP. The Montgomery County Education Association (MCEA) said it was rallying for Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) to address “outstanding educator concerns.” Large teacher car rally against MCPS reopening plan. pic.twitter.com/Ch1LFmsqIg — Tim Carney (@TPCarney) February 23, 2021 The MCEA streamed the event to social media, showing off what appeared to be hundreds of vehicles proceeding through the streets with signs and honking horns. “When the pandemic started, teachers were praised and honored….now, they are being villainized for trying to keep their communities safe,” said one attendee, Jeremy Levine, according to MCEA. Derek Turner, MCPS chief of engagement, innovation, and operations,...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Everyone over the age of five will be required to wear masks in classrooms and any other “school setting where interaction with others is likely,” Gov. Larry Hogan said Tuesday. During a news conference Tuesday afternoon, Hogan announced a new executive order that requires masks be worn in classrooms, cafeterias, hallways, auditoriums and gyms. READ MORE: FDA To Consider EUA Recommendation For Single-Dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine This Week With schools being told to get students safely into the classroom by March Governor Hogan issues executive order requiring masks for anyone over the age of 5 in any area of a school setting @wjz READ MORE: Several Positive Rapid COVID-19 Tests Reported Tuesday At Maryland State House — Denise Koch WJZ (@DeniseWJZ) February 23, 2021 MORE NEWS: Mass Vaccination Site Opening In Southern Maryland In March, Gov. Larry Hogan Says Stay with WJZ on...
    Students will be making a return to in-person learning in Charles County, Maryland, this spring. The school board has approved Superintendent Kimberly Hill’s recommendation to allow any students in K-12 to return to in-person classes two days a week beginning April 19. Hill said when kids come back, schools will be vigilant. “We are going to do test for symptomatic individuals at school, so we have on hand the Abbott rapid test,” Hill said. Some 8,000 students who have opted for in-person learning would attend classes in person Mondays and Tuesdays; the other half, Thursday and Fridays. According to the new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines on whether it’s safe for schools to reopen, Charles County is in the yellow category of moderate risk of transmission in schools. Francisco Rodriguez, a county seventh-grade instructional assistant and parent of three area students, spoke out against the plan. He told...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City Public Schools meal sites and in-person learning locations will be closed Thursday due to the weather, the school system said Wednesday. Virtual learning, meanwhile, will continue, and those who normally attend classes in person will do so online. For the latest list of school closings and delays, click here. Stay up-to-date with the latest forecast by downloading the WJZ weather app.
    ANNAPOLIS, Maryland — Republican Gov. Larry Hogan is blaming teachers unions for blocking students from returning to the classroom in Maryland’s largest public school districts after nearly a year of remote learning forced by the coronavirus. Hogan is desperate for Maryland children to resume regular, in-person instruction, saying Wednesday he has satisfied key demands the teachers unions made as a condition for returning to campus. The governor invested $1 billion in federal money the state received to retrofit school buildings to address health concerns; provided 1 million coronavirus test kits to school districts and moved teachers to the front of the line for COVID-19 vaccinations. Meanwhile, Maryland schools qualify to reopen under the new, onerous guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control that have been criticized as unreasonable by proponents of on-campus education. The teachers unions are nonetheless rebuffing attempts to reopen public schools, Hogan told the Washington Examiner...
    Isabella Wise had a child when she was just 15 years old — and it changed her life. She dropped out of high school to support her often-sick daughter, and battled postpartum depression. “My life became chaos, between gang violence and foster care, I did not get my GED until I was 21,” Wise, a Montgomery County resident, said during a state legislative hearing on Jan. 27. Wise’s story is familiar to many Marylanders — hundreds of students who are parents attend high schools across the state. And now, state legislators are working to make sure that those instances — of violence, depression and, occasionally, poverty — become far less frequent. A triad of bills in Maryland’s state Legislature aims to support parenting-students, tracking data and implementing new policies to keep them in school, ensure their children’s health — and get their diploma. “We want to ensure that parenting students...
    By TOM HINDLE of Capital News Service Isabella Wise had a child when she was just 15 years old — and it changed her life. She dropped out of high school to support her often-sick daughter, and battled postpartum depression. “My life became chaos, between gang violence and foster care, I did not get my GED until I was 21,” Wise, a Montgomery County resident, said during a state legislative hearing on Jan. 27. Wise’s story is familiar to many Marylanders — hundreds of students who are parents attend high schools across the state. And now, state legislators are working to make sure that those instances — of violence, depression and, occasionally, poverty — become far less frequent. A triad of bills in Maryland’s state Legislature aims to support parenting-students, tracking data and implementing new policies to keep them in school, ensure their children’s health — and get their diploma....
    Students in Maryland’s Prince George’s County Public Schools will be able to return to the classroom this spring for in-person learning. Schools CEO Monica Goldson said Wednesday that families will be sent a survey to select to either continue virtual learning for the remainder of the school year or begin hybrid instruction two days a week in April. Families have until Feb. 28 to complete the survey. Under the hybrid learning model, students will be divided into two groups for in-person learning two days a week. The other three days of the school week will be virtual. “I believe that our plan to implement hybrid learning, where students have two days of in-person learning and three days remotely, will help to meet the needs of many of our students, and will ensure that we continue to prioritize health, safety, equity and excellence,” Goldson said in a video announcement. School staff...
    Whenever the last remaining unbeaten team in the NFL loses for the first time, members of the Miami Dolphins team that finished 17-0 in 1972 raise a metaphorical glass (word was that some used to get together to open a bottle of Champagne) to celebrate their status as the league’s lone, unbeaten champion. I don’t know if members of the 1975-76 Indiana University team that went 32-0 held their collective breath when Kentucky reached the 2015 Final Four at 38-0 before wilting against Wisconsin, but they could be in for added attention from the national media this March. That’s because not one, but two teams are unbeaten less than one month before Selection Sunday. No. 1 Gonzaga (20-0) and No. 2 Baylor (17-0) were actually supposed to play Dec. 5 before that game was wiped off the schedule due to COVID-19 concerns. And even though the Bears are in the...
    ELLICOTT CITY, Md. (WJZ) — As many Maryland school districts prepare to return back to the classrooms in about two weeks, some educators in Howard County are worried about the safety inside of school buildings. Hundreds of Howard County Public Schools educators and parents gathered Tuesday night in a car caravan. RELATED: Maryland Bill Would Allow Local Jurisdictions To Make Decisions About Distribution, Sales Of Tobacco Products “We just feel like the process is being rushed right now,” Jen Retterer, a Howard County Schools teacher, said. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines “We’re here really to fight for the kids and their safety, along with all the educators,” Steve Burnett, a Howard County Schools counselor, said. Many educators who attended the car rally said it would be premature to allow students and staff back in schools when their...
    By PATRICK HAUF of Capital News Service After Maryland Democrats successfully pushed through a multi-billion dollar education reform bill last week, one Republican lawmaker has proposed pandemic-related education legislation of her own HB0939, introduced by Del. Lauren Arikan, R-Harford and Baltimore counties, would, under the condition that a school district fails to open in-person instruction by the fall, give parents the option to reallocate the public school funds of their child toward an alternative school. Arikan told the Capital News Service she has heard many concerning stories in parenting and education groups online about the devastating impact of virtual schooling on students. “I was inspired by the daily heartbreaking posts I was seeing,” she told CNS. “Children who weren’t even able to read yet being expected to navigate computer programs. ... And children with all different types of learning styles crying as they sat at the computer day after day.”...
    Maryland Republican Gov. Larry Hogan is in a unique position.  He was the subject of pervasive rumors that he would primary former President Donald Trump in 2020 -- Hogan eventually declined to run, despite saying that even Trump Cabinet members asked him to. And the governor has positioned himself in the GOP as one of the foremost moderate foils to the Trump movement ahead of 2024. But he remains a Republican governor in a deep blue state; in Maryland, Democrats outnumber Republicans in the General Assembly by a 130-57 margin. Hogan often manages to find common ground with Democrats in the legislature, like on the "Relief Act" he just signed into law Monday, which was passed nearly unanimously and aimed at helping the state emerge from the pandemic. But he often finds himself in major battles with statehouse Democrats despite the fact that he's more to the center on the national political scene.  ...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) – Federal guidance released Friday afternoon by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lays out a blueprint on getting kids back in the classroom. The guidance is not a green light to open all schools, but rather sets community transmission benchmarks to assist school leaders in decision-making. It also provides a series of mitigation steps, recommending universal masking and every effort to socially distance. RELATED: Maryland Weather: Wintry Mix In The Forecast For Saturday; Winter Weather Advisory Issued For Parts Of State “It’s an important signal that we are trying from the federal level to help to rebuild that trust,” Dr. Annette Anderson of the Johns Hopkins School of Education said. “Districts have pieced together a case-by-case response to the pandemic and now we’re seeing there’s going to be more support from the federal level.” CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus...
    D.C. has released a chart that shares an overview of each school’s reopening plans for Term 3, which began earlier this month. The individualized plans were the results of the work of each school’s Reopen Community Corps — a group of school-level stakeholders at every school that “reviewed feedback from learning preference surveys, led with equity to prioritize their highest need students, and helped school leaders design a tailored reopening plan for their school in Term 3,” according to the D.C. Public Schools’ reopening website. Each school’s plan involves some kind of in-person learning, which includes classrooms with teachers and CARE classrooms or tutoring services. D.C. schools will be able to serve approximately 30% of their students in person, depending on staffing and classroom space, according to DCPS Reopen Strong. See each school’s reopening plans here. Some 9,000 more students returned to in-person learning Feb. 2. More Coronavirus news ...
    ANNAPOLIS (WJZ) — Gov. Larry Hogan promised rapid COVID-19 tests and an “unlimited supply” of PPE for schools during a press conference Thursday. This comes with more encouragement from the state to bring students and teachers back to the classroom for in-person learning by March 1. The governor said all but two public school systems have either resumed in-person instruction or have agreed to do so by that date. RELATED: We Need More Damn Vaccines: Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan Says Demand For COVID-19 Vaccines Will Continue To Outpace Supply The state is offering nearly one million COVID-19 tests, both antigen and PCR to public and private schools for testing as they consider reopening. The program is free and voluntary. He said school systems will be surveyed and can opt-in as they wish. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan Calls On Schools To Move To Hybrid In-Person Learning By March 1 This comes...
    The Washington Teachers’ Union has voted against authorizing a strike, but in a letter to D.C. officials, members said they want a way to address emergency issues in a timely manner. In a letter to schools Chancellor Lewis Ferebee and Mayor Muriel Bowser, the union said the decision demonstrates that its members want to work with District leaders on urgent action to “safely reopen schools and want to exhaust all other remedies before authorizing a strike.” Earlier this month, D.C. had asked for a temporary order to prevent the union from engaging in a strike that would have stopped the reopening of some schools for in-person learning. Among the requests the union is making is the opening of a “Situation Room” to identify and respond to emergency issues requiring responses within 24 hours. The union said it wants to work with D.C. Public Schools on the matter. The members also...
    Capital News Service — A bill in the Maryland state legislature would require public schools to allow the use of therapy dogs across the state. There’s currently no Maryland-wide policy for these dogs. RELATED: Maryland House Of Delegates Override Hogans Veto Of Measure To Boost School Funding Under the law – filed in the House as HB713, and in the Senate as SB419 – certified canines would be permitted entry to offer emotional and scholastic support for students. How exactly that should happen would be left up to each county board of education. Sponsor Sen. Ben Kramer, D-Montgomery, told Capital News Service that having a dog nearby would be an ideal way for students to power down and relax in learning environments – and that the animals’ unconditional love is invaluable for children. Schools would not be charged with providing the dogs – rather, the bill simply would allow the...
    COLLEGE PARK, Md. — A bill in the Maryland General Assembly would require public schools to allow the use of therapy dogs. There’s currently no Maryland-wide policy for these dogs. Under the law — filed in the House of Delegates as HB713, and in the state Senate as SB419 — certified canines would be permitted entry to offer emotional and scholastic support for students. How exactly that should happen would be left up to each county board of education. Sponsor Sen. Ben Kramer, D-Montgomery, told Capital News Service that having a dog nearby would be an ideal way for students to power down and relax in learning environments — and that the animals’ unconditional love is invaluable for children. Schools would not be charged with providing the dogs — rather, the bill simply would allow the animals to enter schools with a trained handler. School social workers from Montgomery County...
    By TOM HINDLE of Capital News Service ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — A bill in the Maryland state legislature would require public schools to allow the use of therapy dogs across the state. There’s currently no Maryland-wide policy for these dogs. Under the law - filed in the House as HB713, and in the Senate as SB419 - certified canines would be permitted entry to offer emotional and scholastic support for students. How exactly that should happen would be left up to each county board of education. Sponsor Sen. Ben Kramer, D-Montgomery, told Capital News Service that having a dog nearby would be an ideal way for students to power down and relax in learning environments - and that the animals’ unconditional love is invaluable for children. Schools would not be charged with providing the dogs - rather, the bill simply would allow the animals to enter schools with a trained...
    Schools in Loudoun County, Virginia, completed their first stage of employee coronavirus vaccinations last week and are preparing to move on to administering second doses. After finishing the first stage last Friday at its distribution site at Brambleton Middle School, the school system will transition to second vaccine doses this Friday. Some 10,500 staff have received their first does since Jan. 15. The site at Brambleton Middle School was a cooperative effort among the school system, the county health department and the Office of Emergency Management. The Loudoun County School Board approved a plan that will bring kindergarten through fifth grade students — whose parents chose hybrid learning — back to school buildings no later than Feb. 16. Middle- and high-schoolers, whose parents previously opted-in to the hybrid model, will return to classrooms two days per week by March 3. More Coronavirus news Sign up for WTOP alerts Latest coronavirus test...
    BALTIMORE COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — A Baltimore County family is hoping to use their loss to raise awareness about teen depression and suicide as schools remain virtual due to COVID-19. Michael Myronuk, Jr., was just 14 years old when he died by suicide last October. RELATED: Maryland State Police Urge Parents To Remember Simple Steps To Keep Their Kids Safe Online “Michael junior was probably my favorite person,” his father, Michael Myronuk, Sr., said. “He was a really really cool kid,” his mother, Heathyr Sidle, said. Sidle recalled the moment she learned of her son’s death. “He texted me and said, ‘This is why I killed myself.’ So I pulled over and I called his dad and I was like, ‘You need to go find Michael,’ and then it was too late,” she said. When Sidle pulled up to Myronuk’s house, she said she just knew tragedy had struck. “(I)...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City Schools has a new tool for parents as the district works toward resuming in-person learning. There is a new classroom readiness dashboard. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines It will provide frequent updates about the air ventilation plans for schools and learning spaces. Baltimore City Schools CEO Dr. Sonja Santelises says safety is key and the district wants to show families it’s okay to return. “We’re hosting open houses at our schools so that families see the soap that wasn’t in place prior to the pandemic is now in place,” Santelises said. “They see the distancing, they see the masking, and for a lot of our families, seeing is believing. They’re not just going to take our word for it.” In-person learning will start with kindergarten through 2nd grade on March 1. The...
    CENTREVILLE, Md. (WJZ) — Queen Anne’s County Public Schools announced Thursday it will begin to implement the hybrid learning schedule on February 16. Students will rotate on an A/B day schedule with a virtual learning day on Wednesday each week, the school system said. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines “School-based staff, bus drivers, custodians, food service employees, and central office staff are working to ensure that all school facilities are ready for the return of students,” a letter to employees and families said. Principals will contact families with details about schedules and transportation next week, Queen Anne’s County Public Schools said. For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Many students in Anne Arundel County will begin to return to the classroom in person in some form beginning March 1, the county’s public school system said Thursday. Under the plan, elementary school students whose parents said they wanted them to return to in-person learning — including those in pre-kindergarten through fifth grade, as well as early childhood education students — will do so beginning March 1. A week later on March 8, those in grades six, nine and 12 would return, with students in grades seven, eight, 10 and 11 returning beginning March 22. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines Staff members, meanwhile, will return to classrooms by February 17, with teachers going back sooner. Smaller groups of students at select schools and programs...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is urging patience on residents awaiting vaccination against COVID-19, saying the process will take far longer and be more difficult than anyone would like. Hogan spoke about those difficulties in his State of the State address Wednesday evening. The Republican governor says it will take many months for manufacturers to boost vaccine production. So far, he says, Maryland has administered more than 570,000 vaccines. A fter the speech, the House majority leader who gave the Democrats’ response, described the vaccine rollout as bungled and says the public has been left deeply confused about how to get access to the vaccine. Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.
    Receiving the vaccine here is Desann Manzano-Lee, an instructional specialist for PGCPS. She was vaccinated at the Kaiser Permanente Lanham Rehabilitation Center. (Courtesy Kaiser Permanente) From teachers and instructional specialists to bus drivers, Prince George’s County Public Schools employees now are receiving COVID-19 shots as part of Maryland’s Phase 1b vaccine plan that prioritizes educators and support staff. The school system is contacting employees directly to give them registration links. Appointments are being made with either the county health department at the Prince George’s Sports and Learning Complex in Landover, or at the Kaiser Permanente Lanham Rehabilitation Center. From a shots clinic Wednesday, Dr. Luis Ruiz said it’s “extremely exciting” to be vaccinating community members, particularly for essential services such as schools. “We know that many families and children are struggling right now not being able to do (in person) education,” said Ruiz, a pulmonologist at Kaiser Permanente. “So, I...
    By BRIAN WITTE, Associated Press ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Gov. Larry Hogan will highlight economic relief, COVID-19 vaccination and education in his annual State of the State speech, according to excerpts released Wednesday afternoon by his office. The Republican governor is emphasizing the need for legislation he proposed that includes direct stimulus payments to low-to-moderate income residents, with benefits of up to $750 for families and $450 for individuals. It would repeal all state and local income taxes on unemployment benefits. The governor’s plan also calls for sales tax credits of up to $3,000 a month for four months for small businesses. “This emergency legislation will provide more than a billion dollars in immediate tax relief and economic stimulus for struggling Maryland families, small businesses, and those who have lost their jobs due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Hogan says in the excerpts. The Maryland Senate, which is controlled by Democrats,...
    This content was republished with permission from WTOP’s news partners at Maryland Matters. Sign up for Maryland Matters’ free email subscription today. When a child is arrested by a police officer stationed in a Baltimore City public school, they are handcuffed, placed in cages, photographed and fingerprinted — even kids as young as seven-years-old, according to Jenny Egan, a Baltimore City juvenile public defender. “It is a terrifying and dehumanizing experience that sends a message to our children. This is who you are to us; this is what we think you deserve: cuffs and cages,” Egan said at a news conference Tuesday. “We have to think about the impact that has on a child who is trying to become the person they will be.” She was speaking in support of a legislative package introduced by Dels. Jheanelle K. Wilkins (D-Montgomery) and Gabriel Acevero (D-Montgomery) seeking to restructure disciplinary measures in public schools...
    TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — The Baltimore County Public School System’s recently-announced plan to bring students back into classrooms this spring has drawn mixed reviews from parents and teachers. The earliest a group of students would return to in-person learning is March 1. Under the plan, students would be broken into cohorts based on their addresses, with each cohort having two days in the classroom and three days of online learning. Cohort A would have in-person classes on Mondays and Tuesdays, while Cohort B would have in-person classes on Thursdays and Fridays. READ MORE: Baltimore County Schools To Move To Phased Hybrid Reopening Beginning March 1 The youngest students would be the first to return to the classroom under the plan. “Research is telling us that we can open schools as safely as possible and with proper mitigation strategies,” schools spokesperson Charles Herndon said. “We believe this is the right...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City Public Schools will close virtual learning two hours early Monday. District office staff will still work remotely on its regular schedule, the school system said. TIMELINE: Snow Arrives In Maryland. How Long Will It Last? Winter weather is moving through Maryland. It began Sunday and is set to continue into Tuesday with possibly over a foot predicted to stick in the Baltimore City area. Meal sites and all in-person learning has already been canceled. Get the full list of school closings here. Stay up-to-date with the latest forecast by downloading the WJZ weather app.
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — All in-person learning and meal sites for Baltimore City Public Schools will be closed Monday. Virtual learning will continue. Students who are usually in-person will still be able to access learning virtually. TIMELINE: Snow Arrives In Maryland. How Long Will It Last? Winter weather is moving through Maryland. It began Sunday and is set to continue into Tuesday with possibly over a foot predicted to stick in the Baltimore City area. Winter storm warnings went into effect at 4 a.m. on Sunday, and much of the state– as well as Baltimore– is included within the warning territory, with the exception of a few Eastern Shore counties, and those areas are under a winter weather advisory. Stay up-to-date with the latest forecast by downloading the WJZ weather app. Tweets by ChelseaWeather
    By Geoff Mulvhill, Adrian Sainz and Michael Kunzelman | Associated Press President Joe Biden says he wants most schools serving kindergarten through eighth grade to reopen by late April, but even if that happens, it is likely to leave out millions of students, many of them minorities in urban areas. “We’re going to see kids fall further and further behind, particularly low-income students of color,” said Shavar Jeffries, president of Democrats for Education Reform. “There’s potentially a generational level of harm that students have suffered from being out of school for so long.” Like some other officials and education advocates, Jeffries said powerful teachers unions are standing in the way of bringing back students. The unions insist they are acting to protect teachers and students and their families. In a call Thursday evening with teachers unions, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the federal government’s top infectious disease expert, said the reopening of...
    Starting in February, the staff of licensed child care providers and independent schools in D.C. will be eligible to make appointments for the coronavirus vaccine. DC Health and the Office of the State Superintendent of Education have partnered with One Medical, which will administer the vaccines. Eligible staff who will be working in person will receive an email with instructions for making an appointment, which will open on Monday at noon. Appointments start on Tuesday as approximately 1,400 spots are available during the first week. In subsequent weeks, about 900 slots will be available each week. Teachers and staff at D.C. Public Schools who will be participating in in-person learning started receiving the coronavirus vaccine last Tuesday. More Coronavirus news Sign up for WTOP alerts Latest coronavirus test results in DC, Maryland and Virginia Coronavirus vaccine FAQ: What you need to know Prince George’s Co. restaurants can seat 25%...
    D.C. Public Schools expects 8,000 kids to return to in-person learning on Monday, and is challenging concerns from the Washington Teachers’ Union that the buildings haven’t met safety metrics. Washington Teachers’ Union President Elizabeth Davis said she’s frustrated for parents and staff who don’t trust DCPS after nine months of negotiations to go back to school safely. After a 12-hour hearing on Thursday, Davis said an arbitrator would rule sometime Saturday on whether DCPS has breached its contract with the union. The issue over school safety metrics, Davis said, goes to transparency: During the walk-through of school buildings to ensure safety repairs had been made, parents and teachers were not included in the process, she said. When they were given checklists and went through the buildings themselves, they noted problems such as toilets that would not flush and windows that wouldn’t open. But the DCPS website showed those repairs had...
    The head of a Northern Virginia school system is asking for patience, grace, flexibility and comfort with the unknown amid increased media attention after a parent expressed his frustration during a school board meeting on school reopening. “Following Tuesday’s School Board meeting there has been increased media attention paid to Loudoun County, specifically regarding the reopening of schools. This has led to some inflammatory rhetoric being shared on social media and in email and phone communications with staff,” Interim Superintendent Scott A. Ziegler said in a letter to the school community. A parent addressed the school board during the public comment portion and called its members “cowards hiding behind our children as an excuse for keeping schools closed.” Video of what happened was shared by Aliscia Andrews, who was a candidate for the 10th District House seat in last year’s election. The father mentioned statistics that claim that the vast...
    CECIL COUNTY, MD. (WJZ) — Cecil County Public Schools will reopen schools for students one day a week, or at 25% capacity, starting February 8. Students who were in face-to-face instruction earlier will be in the same weekday grouping they were at the start of the school year in September. Schools are set to communicate with families directly on the weekday grouping. The school system said any child who was fully virtual before the November closures who would now like to be in face-to-face instruction must contact their principal by February 3. Contact information for each school can be found HERE. Any family who wishes to remain fully virtual will still have the option, the system assured its students and parents. Students who were in the first 5% return group, however, will continue to go to face-to-face instruction four days a week. School of Technology students will follow the same schedule as...
    ANNAPOLIS (WJZ) — Gov. Larry Hogan announced Tuesday that $35.8 million in federal COVID-19 relief funding for non-public schools. He said it’s in an effort to “support safe reopenings.” “I believe very strongly that every child in Maryland deserves access to a world-class education regardless of what neighborhood they happen to grow up in,” the governor said. “With this critical additional funding, we will have the opportunity to help non-public schools address the effects of the pandemic.” The funding comes from the Emergency Assistance for Non-Public Schools “with an approved certification and agreement to provide services or assistance to eligible non-public schools,” the governor’s office said. The governor also says his Fiscal Year 2022 recovery budget is proposing additional funding of $3.4 million to increase the Broadening Options and Opportunities for Students Today Program to a “record $10 million” which will provide scholarships to low-income students from areas with “underperforming schools...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Due to a wintry mix moving through Maryland on Tuesday morning, a number of schools have announced changes to their schedules for Tuesday. Here are the latest closings/delays/changes to school services and learning for Tuesday: RELATED COVERAGE: TIMELINE: When Will Snow, Sleet Arrive In Maryland? Maryland Weather: Snow, Wintry Mix Possible In Parts Of The State Early This Week Baltimore City Schools: All in-person learning sites and meal sites will be closed Tuesday. Virtual learning will continue as scheduled. Due to predictions of snow/sleet and predictions of icy roads in the morning, all in-person learning, and meal sites will be closed on Tuesday, January 26, 2021. Virtual learning will continue – students who normally attend in-person will access learning virtually. pic.twitter.com/NPWCYjBy5m — Baltimore City Public Schools (@BaltCitySchools) January 26, 2021 Cecil County Public Schools: All learning will be virtual Tuesday. School offices will open...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Snow is falling in parts of Maryland Monday night, and with more wintry mix expected, a number of schools have announced changes to their schedules for Tuesday. Here are the latest closings/delays/changes to school services and learning for Tuesday: RELATED COVERAGE: TIMELINE: When Will Snow, Sleet Arrive In Maryland? Maryland Weather: Snow, Wintry Mix Possible In Parts Of The State Early This Week Baltimore City Schools: All in-person learning sites and meal sites will be closed Tuesday. Virtual learning will continue as scheduled. Due to predictions of snow/sleet and predictions of icy roads in the morning, all in-person learning, and meal sites will be closed on Tuesday, January 26, 2021. Virtual learning will continue – students who normally attend in-person will access learning virtually. pic.twitter.com/NPWCYjBy5m — Baltimore City Public Schools (@BaltCitySchools) January 26, 2021 Cecil County Public Schools: All learning will be virtual Tuesday....
    Maryland's governor took to Facebook to personally criticize a county health official in response to a Facebook commenter's concerns about the speed at which state schools are reopening for in-person learning. In an exchange first reported by the Capital Gazette, Gov. Larry Hogan (R) responded to a commenter, Lauren Thompson, who herself had asked why Anne Arundel County's top health executive, Nilesh Kalyanaraman, had asked to push back plans to reopen schools for in-person learning until a surge in hospitalizations is reduced. "Why does Dr. K of Anne Arundel County Health Dept say otherwise? Our hospitals say otherwise," Thompson continued, adding: "And I'm pretty sure inspiring teachers and families alike to head back to the classroom shouldn't involve threats towards our beloved teachers." "He doesn't really know what he's talking about," Hogan responded to Thompson, referring to Kalyanaraman. In a statement to The Hill, a spokesman for the governor said that...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City Schools announced Friday more than 1,200 staff members have registered to receive their COVID-19 vaccinations. The school system said nearly all those who have registered are on track to be vaccinated by the end of next week, with a possibility that a small number of those appointments may fall into the following week. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines “I am extremely pleased with the early response. We have put in place sound health and safety measures to facilitate in-person learning and getting staff vaccinated is another step in that process,” City Schools CEO Dr. Sonja Santelises said. On Monday, January 18, City Schools and Johns Hopkins Medicine announced a collaboration that would vaccinate nearly 500 teachers and school staff already working at in-person learning sites weekly. For the latest information on coronavirus...
    Maryland high schools may soon be required to adopt a curriculum on gambling addiction, depending on the fate of one bill in the state legislature. SB0243, sponsored by Sen. Bryan Simonaire, R-Anne Arundel, directs the Maryland State Department of Education to develop a program for local schools to teach high school students the dangers of gambling. Local school districts would have the option to use an existing gambling curriculum or to establish a new curriculum, according to Simonaire. “From a governmental policy standpoint, the state receives money from gambling revenues that can be used to help other priorities in our state, but also adversely enables many citizens to become gambling addicts, which creates other issues for the state,” he told Capital News Service. Simonaire cited numerous studies in arguing the need for required education on the risks of gambling. Multiple studies have shown that people aged 18 to 34 are...
    Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is going all in on a push to reopen schools in the state for hybrid learning by the beginning of March.  BIDEN PLAN TO REOPEN SCHOOLS SUBJECT TO POTENTIAL CHANGES IN CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC, OFFICIAL SAYS Hogan said during a news conference at St. John’s College in Annapolis on Thursday that there is a growing consensus in the state and in the country that there is "no public health reason for county school boards to keep students out of schools" due to COVID-19. He argued that continuing down a path of virtual learning could lead to significant setbacks for students, especially among students of color and those from low-income families. "I understand that in earlier stages of the pandemic, that this was a very difficult decision for county school boards to make," Hogan added. "But we know so much more now than we did back then. There can no longer...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Parents, students and teachers are expressing mixed reactions about the risk of in-person learning amid the coronavirus pandemic. This comes as Gov. Larry Hogan “urgently” called on local school systems to return to hybrid in-person learning by no later than March 1. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan Calls On Schools To Move To Hybrid In-Person Learning By March 1 During a news conference Thursday in Annapolis, the governor said there was “no public health reason” to keep kids out of schools due to COVID-19, adding virtual learning could lead to significant learning losses, especially among students of color and those from low-income families. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines “If the school systems do not immediately begin a good faith effort to return to classrooms, we will explore every legal avenue at our disposal,” the governor...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan Thursday “urgently” called on local school systems to return to hybrid in-person learning by no later than March 1. Hogan made the comments during a news conference with State Superintendent of Schools Dr. Karen Salmon at St. John’s College in Annapolis. The governor said there was “no public health reason” to keep kids out of schools due to COVID-19. If schools don’t move toward some form of in-person learning, Hogan said the state will consider “every legal avenue at our disposal.” Stay with WJZ on this developing story. To get breaking news alerts, download our app now!
    ANNAPOLIS (WJZ) — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan will hold a press conference Thursday afternoon at St. Johns College. He will be joined by State Superintendent of Schools Dr. Karen Salmon. ????‍????Governor Hogan will hold a press conference today at 2:30 pm. He will be joined by State Superintendent of Schools Dr. Karen Salmon. — Mike Ricci (@riccimike) January 21, 2021 The press conference will be live at 2:30 p.m.
    Prince George’s County Public Schools in Maryland has released specifics on COVID-19 metrics that could possibly trigger the transition toward in-person learning to begin sometime this spring. “While some aspects will undoubtedly change over time, we will do our best to deliver timely updates,” schools CEO Monica Goldson said in a letter to the school community. COVID-19 vaccinations of educators and support staff are tentatively scheduled to begin Feb. 1 under a partnership with Kaiser Permanente, and Goldson said that makes her “more optimistic” about the possibility of reopening school doors. COVID-19 rates in the county will be among many factors being considered. As it stands now, the thresholds for in-person learning to be considered is based on these 14-day averages: New rate of daily cases between 46-91 Percent of positive cases between 5%-8% Average daily case rate between 5-10 per 100,000 residents. Meeting those goals would require...
    Starting next week, the list of people who can get COVID-19 vaccines in D.C. will expand, despite a supply that has yet to meet an ever-growing demand. Teachers and other in-person staffers for both public and charter schools will be eligible, the District announced Tuesday. (This includes public schoolteachers who will return for in-person instruction in Term 3.) D.C. police officers will also be eligible, as will those needed for “continuity of District government,” officials said in a statement. Until then, appointments are just open to seniors and health workers, either by going online or by calling 855-363-0333. New appointments will be released at 9 a.m. Thursdays to eligible residents in “priority” ZIP codes. More appointments will be released at 9 a.m. Fridays for all D.C. ZIP codes. “If D.C.’s weekly vaccine allotment from the federal government changes, this schedule is likely to change in accordance,” the District said. As...
    With little improvement in its COVID-19 health metrics, Howard County Public Schools is bumping the date when in-person programs could resume. The next possible date is Monday, Feb. 8. A decision on that would be made roughly next week because the school district wants to factor in two weeks for adequate preparations. The most recent data for the county shows a seven-day average test-positivity rate of over 8%, and a seven-day average of confirmed cases at 47.2 per 100,000 people. The school district will stay all-virtual until there’s a test-positivity rate of 5% or less over a seven-day range, and until the seven-day rolling average case rate drops below 10 per 100,000. Recently, HCPS announced its plan for a return to classrooms — beginning with the resumption of small group programs, followed by a gradual increase of students in the third quarter. “Expanded in-person instruction” would then begin in the...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City Schools and Johns Hopkins are partnering up to vaccinate teachers and staff. An expected 500 employees will be vaccinated this week, including those who are already working in schools in person– teachers, meal service, administrators and custodians. “We know how important it is to the long term health and well-being of our city and our neighbors to see the safe and successful reopening of City schools,” says Johns Hopkins University President Ronald J Daniels. “I am glad Johns Hopkins can fulfill its mission to support the city and its citizens – especially our youngest – through this urgent and important partnership.” At the current scheduled pace of 500 a week, it will take 20 weeks to get all teachers and other staff vaccinated. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from...
    Maryland’s public schools will be receiving over $780 million in federal COVID-19 relief funds to help with efforts to reopen schools while mitigating safety risks, the state’s Department of Education announced Friday. The funding — which is allocated through the federal Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations (CRRSA) Act — provides grants directly to school systems to “assist in reopening classrooms, assess and address learning loss, provide targeted tutoring and other initiatives to help alleviate the impacts of the pandemic,” according to a news release. The department said the funding would be flexible, so that local school systems could decide how it would be spent depending on their individual challenges and needs. Local schools will submit requests for the funds. Here’s how much local school systems will be receiving: Montgomery County: $112,233,764 Prince George’s County: $122,234,704 Anne Arundel County: $48,393,505 Charles County: $13,743,730 Baltimore City: $197,474,401 Baltimore County: $96,638,621...
    GLEN BURNIE, Md. (WJZ) — In just a matter of weeks, some students in Anne Arundel County will have the option to go back into a classroom. Thursday night, the school board approved a hybrid learning plan for “as many students as possible.” With teachers being moved toward the front of the line to get vaccinated, the union president says he’s optimistic, but there are still concerns. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines “Safety is our top priority and when school buildings are able to reopen, we want it to be in a safe way that is able to sustain that reopening,” Russell Leone, the President of the Teachers’ Association in Anne Arundel County, said. “We don’t want a situation where we re-open, but then numbers skyrocket again, and then we have to close back up.” Baltimore...
    The Virginia Department of Health, along with the Department of Education, has released an updated interim guidance for schools navigating when to bring students back to in-person classes. The new guide incorporates and replaces the phased guidance for schools released in July. The guidance and a letter addressing how it should be used was sent to school districts Thursday. It asks Virginia school districts to consider community needs, COVID-19 data, and understand socioeconomic factors, literacy barriers and other educational needs when making plans to bring students back in person. The guide encourages prioritizing younger learners, students with disabilities and English-language learners. It also urges prioritizing learning over activities. When it comes to adding extracurricular activities, including sports, the guide states that school districts should only move forward once all students have been given an opportunity for in-person instruction. “Establish reasonably safe in-person educational environments and then think through including extracurriculars...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City Public Schools will expand their in-person learning options starting Feb. 16. According to city schools, more in-person learning options will be open to students in kindergarten through fifth grade who attend elementary/middle school as well as 9th and 12th graders who attend both traditional and transformative high schools. Since September 28, city schools has slowly expanded option in-person learning for priority groups of students. Families can decide whether they want to participate in-person or remain virtual. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines “The district knows there are groups of young people who desperately need the support they can only receive in person, growing numbers of our families want this option, and has proven it can be done safely,” school officials said in a press...
    CARROLL COUNTY, MD. (WJZ) — There are currently 118 Carroll County Public Schools staff members quarantining for COVID-19 since Monday. The school system confirmed that those quarantining either may have COVID-19, may be experiencing COVID-like illness or people who may have come into close contact with either of the two. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines They added those who may have come in contact include staff who may have been exposed to someone in their community, neighborhood or in the school system. For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.
    Some students in Montgomery County, Maryland, will have to wait longer to return to the classroom, with the school board pushing the start date for in-person learning to March. Some students were slated to go back to the classroom on Feb. 1, but on Tuesday the school board voted to delay the start of returning small groups of students to March 15 — and that is if health metrics are met or health guidance is adjusted because of coronavirus vaccine distribution. “The COVID-19 new case rate and test positivity in the county remain significantly above the thresholds adopted by the county and state,” Montgomery County Public Schools said in a statement. Montgomery County schools shared what they will do to improve the learning experience of all students in the meantime, particularly secondary school students, which include: Focused outreach services for struggling students. Greater use of the Wednesday virtual check-in...
    TOWSON, MD. (WJZ) — Baltimore County Public Schools is officially cancelling its winter sports. The school system said Monday they will evaluate for other potential alternatives for winter sports athletes. Their 2021 fall sports season is tentatively still scheduled for February 13, but could be changed depending on state and local health metrics as the pandemic continues. They also said two Wednesdays out of January will be asynchronous, independent learning days. The first, Wednesday, January 20 will be an asynchronous, or independent learning day for students at all levels. Wednesday, January 27 will be an asynchronous day for students in elementary and middle schools. High school students, however, will have a fully day of live, virtual instruction. For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.
    FREDERICK, Md. (WJZ) — The Frederick County Public Schools system is delaying moving into a hybrid in-person learning model due to worsening COVID-19 metrics, the school system said Wednesday. The new plan calls for teachers to return to schools on January 27 and students to return under the hybrid model on February 16. February 3 and 10 will be “asynchronous learning days.” The hybrid model breaks students into two cohorts and keeps schools at around 30% capacity. An all-virtual model will remain. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines On Sunday, the school system announced it was suspending small group instruction and winter sports practices. The rollout of the hybrid model could be delayed again if metrics don’t improve, officials said. Next week, meanwhile, the school system said it will...
    Less than a week before the planned return to hybrid in-person learning for some public school students in Virginia’s Fairfax County, Superintendent Scott Brabrand and the county school board agreed to delay the return for at least a month. During a work session with the Fairfax County School Board, Brabrand heard concerns from board members, principals, teachers and educators’ unions that bringing willing students back into school buildings during current high numbers of COVID-19 cases was unsafe. After presenting the “Return to School” plans and mitigation strategies developed to bring some students back on Tuesday, Jan. 12, Brabrand suggested delaying the reopening. “What we need to do right now is say we’re taking a pause, and let everybody take a big exhale,” Brabrand said during the video conference call. “Let me take time, and make sure people don’t feel rushed, to talk to talk to teachers, and teachers’ associations, and...
    CECIL COUNTY, MD. (WJZ) — A small number of Cecil County Public schools students will return to the classroom next week. The school system said they are confident they can “serve a small number of students safely by maintaining our safety protocols.” They will return on January 11 and get face-to-face instruction on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines The system said the families included will be contacted directly by the school. All plans to reopen are conditional and may change based on health metrics. “It is our fervent hope that the county’s metrics will continue to improve and that we will be able to expand face-to-face learning,” For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You...
    Students in central Maryland will continue to attend school virtually while about half of the students in the nation will be able to go back to their school buildings. The Baltimore Sun reported Monday that there is no clear idea of when those Maryland students might get back to in-person classes. Few students in suburban Maryland counties have been back inside a school during the pandemic. Experts say the reasons why include politics, union opposition and the failure of federal and state leaders to set clear guidelines as the pandemic began. Meanwhile, a contingent of furious parents say they've sent emails and letters, and held protests with no success. Maryland's governor and state superintendent have advocated for schools to reopen. But they have stopped short of ordering schools to open because they say that it is up to local school boards and superintendents. Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved....
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Dozens of demonstrators gathered in Annapolis on Saturday calling for Maryland schools to reopen. Parents with Rally for Our Kids and Re-Open Maryland Schools joined in an effort to send a message to state and local leaders. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines “We’re out here for answers on why we’re not seeing any action,” Joe Johnston, of Cecil County, said. “They’ve been out of school long enough, ever since last March,” Robin Thicker, of Montgomery County, said. Despite the New Year, COVID-19 restrictions on schools in the state remain the same and students are continuing to learn virtually. “My 7-year-old, we have had issues with his sleep,” Katie Haman, of Carroll County, said. “There have been many nights where he has cried because he wants to go back to school.” Some parents said...
    Teachers at D.C. schools are one step closer to an agreement to return to in-person learning. “The Washington Teachers’ Union is pleased to announce an agreement with DC Public Schools on a Memorandum of Agreement that lays out conditions needed to return to in-person learning,” the union said in a news release Thursday. The agreement covers the remainder of the 2020-2021 school year or through the end of the coronavirus pandemic, whichever is sooner. There will be increased transparency around facility walk-throughs, ensuring that teams assigned to represent school communities will be able to verify that facilities are ready to reopen. D.C. schools will also administer a survey asking WTU members if they are interested in returning to teaching in person or if they are interested in continuing with distance learning. In addition, DCPS will let the union know what the demand is for in-person seats. And if the demand...
    Maryland’s Montgomery County Public Schools is asking for $2.7 billion for the coming fiscal year. In the prerecorded message, schools Superintendent Jack Smith said, “Let me be frank: Planning for next year’s financial needs is unlike any year in our lifetime.” The operating budget request comes in at $42 million less than the current year’s budget, but $40 million more than the Maintenance of Effort, or MOE, funding formula that serves as a floor for school spending. The school system saw a drop in enrollment of more than 3,600 students, and that could result in a $39 million loss for the school system. The budget request is intended to serve as a cushion against that loss. At the same time, the school system has projected that between 2,500 and 3,000 students will return to Montgomery County schools based on its own research. Other “additional areas of concern” for the FY22...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Maryland public school students will continue to learn virtually Thursday as the season’s first major winter storm rolled through the state Wednesday bringing snow, sleet and freezing rain with it. Several school districts announced they were moving to all virtual learning Thursday, including Anne Arundel, Cecil, Frederick and Howard county public schools. SEE FULL LIST 12/17/20, Virtual instruction will take place today as scheduled. First meal service is canceled; 2nd meal service available, as scheduled. https://t.co/bRY17wvBGS — HCPSS (@HCPSS) December 17, 2020 5:30 a.m., 12/17/20: Due to forecasted inclement weather, @AACountySchools will operate on a status of Virtual Instruction with School Buildings Closed today (12/17). More info at https://t.co/AMrKP3mWKC. — AACPS (@AACountySchools) December 17, 2020 FCPS MD Schools: All Virtual Day of Instruction, Thursday, December 17. No in-person small group instruction. Telework encouraged. Staff who must report to buildings should arrive by 9 AM. See...
    Public school students in Montgomery County, Maryland, could return to classrooms on Feb. 1 if health metrics meet key benchmarks. The Montgomery County School Board voted Tuesday to delay the start of in-person learning until the start of the second semester. The school board had given tentative approval to a phased return starting in January. However, they elected to delay a vote on those plans as COVID-19 cases around the area increased. The board also adopted a revised health-metrics framework that would allow more students to return to classrooms as the case rate decreases. The new framework states that students can begin returning when the case rate drops below 15 cases per 100,000 residents. .@mocoboe today voted to adopt a revised health metrics framework to allow for the return of a greater number of students to in-person experiences when the new case rate decreases to 15 cases per 100,000 resident....
    Fauquier County Public Schools in Virginia announced Friday that it would transition back to remote learning next week as the coronavirus pandemic continues to worsen in the region. The school system said it made the decision after seeing a significant amount of community spread and a reduction in its workforce due to employees needing to quarantine after being exposed to the virus. Three Fauquier schools are currently without their school nurses, the county said. Fauquier Schools will engage in virtual learning from Dec. 14 through Dec. 17, at which point the schools will enter their winter break period. A public health official for the Rappahannock Rapidan Health District said that whether students return to in-class instruction when the next semester begins on Jan. 6 is dependent on health metrics at that time. “Getting students back to school next semester really depends on the community’s behavior, being safe, and staying away...
    TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — The Baltimore County Public Schools system will give out three days’ worth of meals to students on December 21 ahead of the holiday break, officials said Friday. The school system’s nutrition program will be closed from December 22 to January 3. Normal meal distribution will resume on January 4. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines Meanwhile, the county government will not hold its usual Saturday meal distribution on December 26, moving it to December 28 starting at 10 a.m. It will resume the following weekend. The school system’s additional food distribution will take place at 300 sites, including all middle and high schools. For a full list of normal meal sites, click here. Officials recommend those in need of food over the holidays contact their...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Maryland's state superintendent is pressing school systems to consider bringing small groups of students back to class despite surging coronavirus cases. The Washington Post reported Tuesday that State Superintendent Karen B. Salmon cited the needs of students as well as research that does not show major spread of the virus in schools. Salmon pointed to failing grades in school systems that rely on remote instruction. Children's mental health also is a big concern. “The research is not showing a consistent relationship between in-person K-through-12 schooling with appropriate safety measures and the spread of the coronavirus,” Salmon told the Maryland State Board of Education on Tuesday. “I . . . continue to encourage our school systems to bring small groups of students in for in-person instruction.” State officials said it appears that two of Maryland’s 24 school systems are conducting some form of in-person schooling. Salmon said it will...
    Even though the coronavirus has left many schools to be empty since March, AAA Mid-Atlantic is reminding drivers that the cameras are still capturing speeders in school zones. Speed cameras last year in Maryland brought in more than $60 million, and in Montgomery County from April to September of this year, nearly 150,000 speed camera tickets were issued even if classes were not in session, according to AAA Mid-Atlantic. Montgomery County speed cameras captured drivers speeding in emptied school zones and on roads in excess of 80 mph and even 100 mph. To combat this, the county is now seeking to double its number of automated traffic enforcement cameras. In 2020, about 243,413 speed camera tickets were issued to drivers from January to September by the Montgomery County Police Department. That tally includes 147,987 speed camera tickets issued from April to September when many schools were empty due to the...
    Maryland’s Superintendent of Schools on Tuesday said with the appropriate “guard rails,” Maryland schools are safe to open. Superintendent Karen Salmon said with mandatory mask-wearing, social distancing and cleaning protocols, schools can make a safe transition back to buildings. “The student infection rate is less than the community rate and schools have not been super-spreader sites,” Salmon said, during a Maryland State Board of Education meeting. She also said the lack of in-person instruction is leaving the most underserved children even more vulnerable. “We have seen significant negative impacts,” Salmon said. “The lack of in-person instruction is starkly reinforcing the inequities embedded in our society, and continuing the perpetuation of achievement and learning gaps, leaving our most underserved children even more vulnerable,” she said. Salmon and the head of the state’s health services Dr. Jinlene Chan presented research about infection rates in schools on Tuesday. In addition to returning to...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — The State Board of Education says schools are not a super-spreader of COVID-19. Now, they’re calling for students to return to the classrooms. “The student infection rate is less than the community rate and schools have not been super-spreader sites,” Maryland Schools Superintendent Dr. Karen Salmon said. It’s the latest update from the Maryland Board of Education. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines On Tuesday, Salmon shared new data and research about schools nationwide reopening during the pandemic. She says recent studies show mask-wearing and physical distance of one-meter have a significant risk reduction of transmitting COVID-19. In a presentation with local school and state health department leaders, Salmon says available information shows the pandemic has had a large and uneven impact on student learning. She says some students in Montgomery County are struggling...
    Students in Charles County, Maryland, schools, like kids across the country, are feeling the effects of an extended period of distance learning: confusion, anxiety, isolation. School officials say it has contributed to an alarming jump in F’s recorded in the first quarter. To help students struggling with online learning, the Charles County school board voted to suspend the current grading policy and calculate F grades at 50%. Amy Hollstein, deputy superintendent for Charles County Public Schools, suggesting assigning F’s a 50% value after reviewing the rate of failing grades compared to last year at the same time. “In high school, we’ve seen a 72.7 % increase in the number of F’s that were awarded in the first quarter,” she said, adding that the figures for middle school were similar. Several students who didn’t get hot spots to help with connectivity until the end of the quarter were given an “Incomplete”...
    Coronavirus safety teams have been established in Fairfax County, Virginia, to help public schools meet federal guidelines for reducing the spread of COVID-19. Teams made up of public school staff and retirees are undergoing training, and some have already conducted spot checks of school buildings, according to the Fairfax County Public School Department. “The role of these teams is to help protect staff and students, and to make sure we all know what we can do to ensure safe, clean, healthy spaces,” Assistant Superintendent of Facilities and Transportation Services Jeff Platenberg said in a release. The onsite inspections ensure that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention strategies are being followed, including the proper use of face coverings, social distancing, hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette, cleaning and disinfection, and contact tracing in coordination with the health department. “These visits will help us document how consistently we are implementing all the...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City Schools is postponing the start of all in-person athletics activities until further notice, citing coronavirus concerns. This includes in-person conditioning, practice and competition. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines “While we are eager to see our student-athletes return to play as soon as possible, our priority is to protect their health and safety,” City Schools said in a statement Monday. The system said they will continue to work with their athletic departments to support “on-going virtual engagement with student-athletes and coaches” For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.
    Capital News Service — As COVID-19 cases rise throughout the state of Maryland, Governor Larry Hogan’s urgent tone has prompted nearly all school districts currently practicing hybrid learning to close their doors to students this fall. Back in August, state officials left the decision of whether to reopen largely up to individual county education executives. The state only advised that schools should consider limiting in-person instruction or close if their county’s positivity rate exceeded 5 percent and the new case rate was over 15 cases per 100,000. As a result, each county made its own plans for how to handle reopening and online learning. However, steep case rates have recently forced most schools to go fully virtual. Most school systems opened for some form of in-person learning While the beginning of the school year started out virtual for all Maryland public school districts, most counties originally had plans in place...
    Some students who play high school sports will soon get back to practice in Maryland, but it won’t be happening at Montgomery County Public Schools, the state’s largest school system. Winter sports practices are allowed to start Monday in the state under an October decision by the Maryland State Board of Education. But Montgomery County Public Schools is pushing things back because of what it calls a surge in COVID-19 cases in the community. “MCPS will continue with operations as outlined in the R.A.I.S.E. Reimagined Framework for virtual athletics, including the virtual spring athletic season that occurs December through the end of January,” the school system said in a statement Friday. “The COVID-19 Task Force for MCPS Athletics will continue preparing for the return of in-person activities and will provide additional updates and recommendations to MCPS leadership for consideration and review.” The school system said that if health metrics allow...
    WASHINGTON (WJZ) — Maryland lawmakers announced Thursday more than $1.4 million in federal funding to support Baltimore County’s COVID-19 emergency response efforts at schools. “Our delegation remains committed to supporting state and local efforts to fight the ongoing pandemic and keep our communities safe,” the lawmakers said. “This new round of federal funding will help Baltimore County protect students and reduce the spread of the virus. In Congress, we will continue pushing for urgently needed funding for state and local governments so that our communities stay safe and emerge from the pandemic in a position of strength.” CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines The funding comes from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. It will help disinfect buses and facilities at 175 schools countywide. For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You...
    GLEN BURNIE, Md. (WJZ) — Anne Arundel County Public Schools’ student-athletes who are participating in winter athletics will begin meeting with coaches virtually on Monday. The Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletics Association (MPSSAA) decided this fall that a competitive winter athletics season could begin on December 7. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines The current case rate in Anne Arundel County exceeds metrics where it is advisable to conduct in-person practices to begin to prepare for competition, the school system said. The rate measures the average number of new cases per 100,000 county residents over the last seven days. High school athletics teams will utilize the entire 10-week period stipulated by the MPSSSAA that runs through February 13, 2021. If conditions allow for the resumption of in-person athletics, teams will do so following protocols that have been...
    With so much learning moved online during the COVID-19 pandemic, will school systems in the area still close when there’s snow? Or will systems simply move — or continue — online learning when the weather gets rough? WTOP has asked D.C.-area school systems to share their plans. Many haven’t formulated a policy yet, but here’s what we know. We’ll update this list as more school systems make their decisions: Virginia Arlington Public Schools will make their decision later this week and let everyone know in about a week. Fairfax County: No decision yet, schools spokeswoman Lucy Caldwell said. She didn’t give a specific timeline for when there will be a policy. There will be snow days in Loudoun County. Assistant Superintendent Kevin Lewis said in a letter to parents: ” … while it may seem that continuing with the school day through remote instruction is feasible, many other factors also have...
    TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — Students in Baltimore County will resume virtual learning Wednesday following a cyberattack, the Baltimore County Public Schools system said Monday. In an update on the school system’s website, officials said students will follow what would have been their Monday schedule when they resume on Wednesday. Before classes resume, students with HP or Windows-based devices should run through a checklist to see if their devices are compromised. Click here to learn more about that process. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines In total, students will miss at least three school days because of this issue. School Board Chair Kathleen Causey previously told WJZ there could be some form of cloud-based learning for some students by Wednesday, but this is not a guarantee. The district’s IT experts...
    COLUMBIA, Md. (WJZ) — Students in Howard County will continue learning virtually through winter break due to an increase in COVID-19 cases, officials said Monday. The Howard County Public Schools system said in-person learning will stay suspended through winter break, including special education assessments. Meal services won’t change. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines In addition, the winter sports season is being postponed to January 4. It had been scheduled to start on December 7. For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.
    With COVID-19 infections continuing to surge in Maryland, a teachers union wants the state to require schools to stick with virtual learning until at least mid-January. The request comes in a letter sent Tuesday from Cheryl Bost, president of the Maryland State Education Association, to state schools Superintendent Karen Salmon. Many school districts across the state have paused or reversed plans to resume in-person learning. “But they’re stating that, we’ll re-evaluate in two weeks, or we’ll re-evaluate in three weeks,” Bost said. “This uncertainty is really causing stress for our educators, and for families who can’t do scheduling.” Bost is urging Salmon to make a statewide announcement. “We really are asking for certainty to be provided, at least until the end of the semester, (so) that everyone knows, with these increased number of cases, that we are going to be in a virtual environment. Everyone can plan better and be...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City Public Schools announced Thursday that all in-person student learning programs and meal sites will pause the week after Thanksgiving. The pause will continue from Monday, November 30 through Friday, December 4. CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:  Coronavirus Resources: How To Get Help In Maryland TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines All students will participate in virtual learning during that time. In-person learning and meal sites will return December 7. For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.
    ELLICOTT CITY, Md. (WJZ) — County Executive Calvin Ball announced Wednesday nearly $6 million in CARES Act funding will be allocated to the Howard County Public School System. The funding will be used to offset COVID-19 related expenditures for virtual instruction and lay the groundwork for safe and effective instruction moving forward, Ball said. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines The funding will support technology, meals for students, public health and safety supplies, and increased unemployment costs. Ball also announced a CARES Act spending dashboard that will track the actual and projected spending of federal funding as the December 30 federal deadline approaches. For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.
    TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — Baltimore County Public Schools said Wednesday that a person involved in the meal distribution program at Castle Drive and Holly Lane and on Solar Circle has recently tested positive for COVID-19. Meal distribution from the two sites will continue uninterrupted, the school system said. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines Everyone who had close contact with this individual has been identified, notified, and will remain away from BCPS facilities until they are cleared to return by the Baltimore County Department of Health. The facilities involved have been cleaned in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention protocols, officials said. BCPS said they’re working with the Baltimore County Department of Health to ensure that recommendations and guidelines provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Maryland Department of Health are in...
    The Washington Teachers’ Union has refused to sign a tentative agreement with D.C. Public Schools to reopen classrooms for in-person instruction. In a statement, the union said school officials haven’t been transparent about reopening plans. ” … Given the lack of clear public health guidelines and the lack of engagement with administrators and teachers around reopening plans, the WTU has determined it is not in the best interest of our students, teachers and all school-based employees to sign the MOA at this time,” union President Elizabeth Davis said in a release. The union had tentatively agreed to the deal last week — it would have allowed teachers to opt out of in-person teaching through January. D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said this is not the first time the union has backed away from a seemingly done deal. “I think it’s unfortunate given that the president of the teachers’ union indicated her...
    Wreaths Across America, which was canceled by Arlington National Cemetery on Monday, is back on, organizers said Tuesday. Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy “has directed Arlington National Cemetery to safely host Wreaths Across America,” the cemetery said on its website less than a day after the initial decision to cancel the event due to the coronavirus pandemic. WAA Executive Director Karen Worcester announced the reversal Tuesday afternoon. Worcester didn’t give details on how the event would work, but said that WAA, which usually brings thousands of volunteers to place wreaths at the gravestones of veterans, will adhere to public health guidelines. This is a developing story. Stick with WTOP for updates. More Coronavirus News Sign up for WTOP alerts Latest coronavirus test results in DC, Maryland and Virginia Fairfax County schools delay in-person instruction for some students Howard County limits gatherings, schools to pare back in-person learning Fairfax County schools...
    Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, pointing to a surge of coronavirus cases, announced Tuesday that all bars, restaurants and other establishments where food and alcohol are served will have to close at 10 p.m. across the state. In addition, retail outlets, religious facilities and barbershop and salons will have to reduce capacity limits back to 50%, Hogan said. The governor also suspended most visits to hospitals and nursing homes to protect vulnerable populations. “This virus has been with us for so long that too many of us have become numb to staggering spiking numbers that are being announced every day,” Hogan said.  It is the governor’s third news conference in a week’s time. Last week, Hogan announced tighter statewide capacity restrictions on bars, restaurants and indoor gatherings — although most of the Maryland counties in the D.C. area have implemented more stringent restrictions. More Coronavirus News Sign up for WTOP alerts...
    QUEEN ANNE’S COUNTY, MD. (WJZ) — Due to rising cases in the area, Queen Anne’s County Public Schools will move to virtual learning starting November 18. The county’s seven-day positivity rate rose by 2.1% since Friday, officials said. All school-sponsored sports events will also be suspended starting November 18 as well. “Our apologies for any inconvenience, but the health and safety of all students and staff is of paramount importance.  Thank you!” the system said in a statement Monday. For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.
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