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    A Maryland woman has created a scholarship for Anne Arundel County students to honor her husband, a detective who died of an unexpected illness in May 2015. Navy Commander DeDe Duncan White and Detective Shelley C. White were a dynamic duo in the community, a naval officer and a police officer who spent their spare time helping others. After Shelley White died, DeDe decided to create the Shelley C. White Junior Memorial Scholarship. “He knew that education was the key to breaking out of your environment,” White said. The fund annually awards one or more scholarships of $1,000 to high school graduates from Anne Arundel County interested in attending college or trade school. DeDe said the scholarship is intended for a specific type of student: “Those kids in the middle who are college or trade school material but they may get overlooked,” she said. The scholarship fund’s mission is to...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Some students in Baltimore County will return to the classroom Monday as hybrid-learning starts in most districts across the state. Baltimore County Schools said it has been preparing for this moment for a long time, adding it feels well prepared to welcome back the first group of students, which will be Pre-K through second grade. READ MORE: Vi Ripken, Mother Of Former Orioles Players Cal, Billy Ripken, Dies At 82 “From the moment they get on the bus to the moment they come off the bus at the end of the day, they’ll see some changes,” said Charles Herndon, with Baltimore County Public Schools. That means one student per seat on the school bus and every other seat will be vacant. All students will have to wear a mask and social distance as they walk through the hallways. “It will be an adjustment period as we move...
    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...
    A school employee in Maryland won’t face charges after he was allegedly spotted masturbating during a Zoom session with special education students this week, according to a report. The reason: Police said the alleged behavior "did not rise to the level of a criminal offense under Maryland law," Montgomery County police spokesman Rick Goodale told Bethesda magazine. Marc Schack, a teaching assistant and 21-year employee of the Montgomery County Public Schools system, claimed he thought the online session was over and his camera off when the alleged incident occurred, according to FOX 5 of Washington. "It was not done intentionally," Schack told the station. "I had no clue that I was on video. I don’t know what else to say. … I’m pretty disturbed about the whole situation. I didn’t do anything intentionally, not malicious. I meant no harm because I didn’t even know I was on the recording. I’m...
    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  
    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...
    The percentage of Maryland students receiving a high school diploma in four years remains consistently high, according to data released by the Maryland State Department of Education. The four-year graduation rate was 86.8% in 2020, according to the data. This is four points better than the 82.8% rate registered a decade ago in 2011, and similar to the 2019 rate of 86.9%, the report said. The 2020 cohort dropout rate was 8.3%, compared to 8.4% in 2019. “We are striving to increase graduation rates, while maintaining our high standards which provide optimal career and college readiness for our students,” said Maryland State Superintendent of Schools Karen Salmon. “It is particularly important as we overcome the challenges of the pandemic that we maintain focus on equity and excellence and ensure all students have every opportunity to succeed and flourish in post-secondary education or professions.” The percentage of students who graduate in...
    This content was republished with permission from WTOP’s news partners at Maryland Matters. Sign up for Maryland Matters’ free email subscription today. Maryland students must take statewide standardized tests this spring that can take up more than seven hours. The Maryland State Board of Education voted Tuesday to administer the Maryland Comprehensive Assessment Program (MCAP), a new statewide assessment that is shorter than previous statewide tests. All students in 3rd through 8th grades and high school will be tested on math and English this spring. Social studies, science and government tests were cut out this year in an effort to reduce testing time. No student can opt out of statewide assessments, State Superintendent of Schools Karen B. Salmon said. The math test is two hours and 40 minutes and the English test is four hours and 40 minutes. Teachers can administer sections of the test over the span of days,...
    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...
    The Montgomery County public school district in Maryland, just outside Washington, D.C., is switching its bus fleet over to electric models at no additional cost in a first-of-its-kind move that could serve as a model for President Biden. The fleet deal, which will fully replace Montgomery County’s more than 1,400 diesel-fueled bus fleet with electric models over 12 years, is one of the largest in the United States to date. Biden, in his campaign climate plan, pledged to convert all 500,000 school buses in the U.S. to zero-emissions models and ensure all U.S.-made buses are zero-emissions by 2030. The Montgomery Board of Education voted Tuesday to approve an initial four-year contract with Highland Electric Transportation, which will purchase more than 300 electric school buses, help build and operate the charging infrastructure, and maintain the buses. “I thought over the last several years that we’d be making a move to electric...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Maryland’s high school graduation and dropout rates remained nearly unchanged in 2020, according to the latest data from the state’s education department. The department said Tuesday the 2020 graduation rate sat at 86.8% compared to 86.9% in 2019 and up four points from 2011. The dropout rate was at 8.3%. Rates improved among students with disabilities and English language learners. Get alerts from WJZ first! Follow WJZ on Facebook and download the app.
    As Montgomery County, Maryland, students and staff prepare to return to in-person learning next month, the county school board met Tuesday to discuss safety protocols and voted to change some graduation requirements for 2021 seniors. Safety protocols Derek Turner, chief of engagement, innovation and operations for Montgomery County Public Schools, said that face masks, social distancing and using hand sanitizer will be the main safety methods used by students and staff, calling the three methods “the trifecta of keeping our staff and students safe.” In addition, he said, thermometers will be administered to all families, and students and staff will be required to fill out a health attestation each week, answering a series of questions about the individual’s contact with COVID-19, potential symptoms and whether they have tested positive. The form will be provided in multiple languages. As an additional safety protocol, Turner said that the county plans “pool testing,”...
    ANNAPOLIS (WJZ) — As more and more people are being vaccinated, some may be wondering how long everyone will have to keep wearing masks. When asked during a press conference Tuesday about lifting any restrictions, Gov. Larry Hogan said he doesn’t see Maryland lifting any masking orders anytime soon. READ MORE: Gas Meter Determined Origin Of Baltimore Gas Explosion In October, Fire Officials Say He said while they have 100% of businesses open, some of these orders will not be changing due to some worry on the variances now present in the state. “Our metrics could not be going any better. We’re down to the October levels, we got past the holiday surge. And this has been consistent now for, in many cases, six, eight weeks,” READ MORE: Masks Will Be Required In Schools, Including Classrooms, Gyms, Hallways, Gov. Larry Hogan Says While he said Marylanders have been following public health...
    Fauquier County, Virginia, public schools Superintendent David Jeck said 78% of families plan to have their children attend four days per week of in-school learning, with the youngest returning to school buildings on March 15. The Fauquier County School Board voted unanimously on Monday to approve Jeck’s plan to offer students the opportunity to return to school Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Wednesdays will be asynchronous learning days, which would also be used for intensive cleaning of school facilities. Students in pre-kindergarten to fifth grade will return to four-day learning on March 15. Students in sixth through 12th grade will resume April 6. Jeck said 78% of parents who responded to a new survey indicated they wanted their children back in school for most of the school week, while 22% said they preferred to have their children continue virtual learning. Citing the mental health and educational benefits to a child...
    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...
    Parents and students withstood bitter cold temperatures to protest Montgomery County Public Schools’ prolonged reopening plan on Saturday. WTOP/Dick Uliano “Open MCPS” signs were posted on the icy grass during a protest against Montgomery County Public Schools’ prolonged reopening plan on Saturday. WTOP/Dick Uliano Most signs protest plans for a late April return to in-person learning for most Montgomery County students and prefer starting sooner. WTOP/Dick Uliano A banner demanding the end of distance learning in Montgomery County, Maryland, is displayed during a protest Saturday. WTOP/Dick Uliano Protesters stood in front of the Montgomery County’s Board of Education headquarters Saturday, arguing against Montgomery County Public Schools’ prolonged reopening plan. WTOP/Dick Uliano (1/5) Share This Gallery: Share on Facebook. Share on Twitter. Share via email. Print. Dozens of students and parents endured freezing temperatures Saturday to protest against a phased plan...
    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...
    ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — Anne Arundel County teachers returned to their classrooms Wednesday to prepare for a hybrid learning model that is set to begin March 1. Teachers were welcomed back with cheer squads and thank you bags. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines In Prince George’s County, the school district announced schools will reopen for in-person learning in April. Families will have the option of selecting distance learning or in-person hybrid learning through the end of the school year. They have until the end of the month to decide. 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.
    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....
    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...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Some Maryland school systems are back in the building as of this week. Frederick County and Queen Anne’s County students are in the classroom Tuesday as the school systems begin hybrid in-person learning. RELATED: Maryland House Bill Aims To Legalize Cannabis, Expunge Convictions “It was an awesome day. It was so good to have kids back in the building,” Daniel Enck, Principal of Frederick County Middle School, said. 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 Frederick County, the district said the families of more than half the students chose to send their kids back, and there was a mix of caution and excitement. “I think there are always concerns, but I’ve been super proud with Frederick County Public Schools and everything,” Enck said. “We spent the...
    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.  ...
    While public schools in Montgomery County, Maryland, prepare to reopen in phases starting March 1, teachers are getting briefings on what to expect. But one county teacher said there’s one thing overshadowing all the plans. “I think we shouldn’t go back first of all until everyone is vaccinated,” said Angela Wolf, a longtime middle school teacher. “I think that’s the underlying issue” that’s giving many teachers pause, Wolf added. The Montgomery County Board of Education sent a letter to Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan on Thursday asking that more vaccines be given to Montgomery County in the weekly allotments from the state. Friday, state health officials released the 4-week plan for allotments. Montgomery County’s health department will continue to receive 4,500 vaccines each week; a reduction of 1,000 vaccines from the previous week. Wolf said back-to-school preparation for teachers includes watching a video explaining what kind of student behaviors they might...
    Sports will soon be back in Montgomery County Public Schools. The school system announced Friday that it’s rolling out a plan for the fall sports season to begin in just a few weeks. “We’re ready to go. So everyone is excited: student-athletes, coaches, our parents and our communities,” said Jeffrey Sullivan, director of systemwide sports for Montgomery County Public Schools. It may be odd to think about spring football, or any other sport traditionally played in the fall, to start practice in February, but the county is attempting to fit in sports activity for those who want to participate in a shortened calendar. The fall sports season will begin Feb. 27 and athletes can sign up to participate through ParentVue through Feb. 22. Contact sports are on the table. Sullivan said they are considering different restrictions and modifications depending on the sport and still complying with national, state and county...
    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 ...
    SEVERNA PARK, Md. (WJZ) — COVID-19 vaccinations began Thursday for teachers in Anne Arundel County. Private and public school teachers, as well as childcare workers, were on the list to get in line. RELATED: Maryland Weather: More Snow Expected Into Friday “I feel fine. I’m excited this is happening,” Jillian Porter, an Anne Arundel County high school teacher, said. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines Teachers, custodial workers, and school staff members waited to get their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. “Definitely excited it’s here, to have all the kids start going back,” Devon Sanders, an Anne Arundel County Schools special education teacher, said. Anne Arundel County officials say the school system partnered with the fire department to give out 1,000 shots. One by one, teachers had their temperatures checked, then rolled up their sleeves. RELATED:...
    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 University of Maryland School of Nursing has received a nearly $14 million donation, the largest in the institution’s history, which it plans to apply in a scholarship fund covering in-state tuition and book fees. Bill and Joanne Conway pledged $13.83 million through their Bedford Falls Fund to continue UMSON’s Conway Scholars program and create an additional 345 scholarships which cover in-state tuition, undergraduate book fees and other expenditures, the school said in a news release Tuesday. The gift marks the fourth donation to UMSON from the Conways, and the single largest in the institution’s history. Adding in this week’s sum, the family has donated around $30 million over the last six years. As a show of gratitude to the Conways, UMSON has chosen to name its deanship The Bill and Joanne Conway Dean of Nursing. “The Conways’ extraordinary generosity continues to help meet that need and propel the University...
    The teachers’ union in Prince George’s County, Maryland, said key safety measures must be met before teachers and students return to their classrooms. In an open letter to its members dated Feb. 8, the Prince George’s County Educators’ Association said the school system has not yet addressed its request for investment in facilities upgrades, specifically adequate air-filtration systems in every room where there are students and teachers. Also needed, according to the letter, is investment in COVID-19 testing, tracing and vaccination, with vaccinations phased in and aligned with those being asked to go back in buildings. The letter signed by Theresa Dudley, president of the Prince George’s County Educators’ Association, said the union wants to develop jointly with the school system a safety agreement for the return to school buildings. Still lacking, according to the letter, among other things are clear plans, protocols and communication when there are COVID-19 outbreaks...
    It has been nearly 11 months since schools closed, and now new plans have been announced to get Arlington, Virginia, students back in the classroom. In a statement released Tuesday, Arlington Public Schools Superintendent Francisco Duran said students who opted for hybrid learning will resume in-person studies beginning in early March. The announcement comes after Gov. Ralph Northam pushed for Virginia school systems to begin offering options for in-person learning by March 15 during a news conference last week. In a letter sent to families, Duran said he was “encouraged by recent improvements in the health metrics, with case positivity rates and other indicators currently decreasing in Arlington and neighboring communities.” According to the letter, staff have returned to school buildings over the past two weeks to prepare for the transition back to in-person learning. Pre-K through second-grade students and all elementary special education students will return to in-person classes...
    toggle audio on and off change volume download audio Superintendent Smith details items approved by the School Board's unanimous vote Montgomery County Public Schools in Maryland will begin opening doors to in-person learning starting March 1. The transition will begin with vocational students and some students with special needs. Then larger groups of students will be phased back by grade level starting on March 15. The county school board approved the move unanimously on Tuesday. No in-person classes will be held on Wednesdays. Some in-person learning will rotate on various schedules. Schools will contact families with details that apply to each child. Each school will hold a virtual orientation by March 15 for all students, regardless of when their group returns. About 40% of families have indicated that they want their students to return to classrooms. Families that previously opted for in-person learning can maintain their virtual learning status...
    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...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — House Democrats are pushing to pass a bill that will increase funding for Maryland schools, but Gov. Larry Hogan is making clear he’s not on board. The Maryland House of Delegates voted overwhelmingly to override Gov. Hogan’s veto of a comprehensive K-12 education measure that would boost school funding by billions over a decade. RELATED: Maskne Is Real, Local Dermatologist Says. Heres What You Can Do To Prevent It Shamoyia Gardiner is the Deputy Director of Strong Schools Maryland, an organization that’s been advocating in favor of the Kirwan Commission. “We’re excited for what this means for students and school communities across the state, but it’s been a long time coming and we have a lot of work left to do now,” Gardiner said. It recommends expanding early childhood education, increasing teacher salaries and outlines college and career readiness programs. Almost a year ago, the bill passed...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Parents know navigating their children’s school system can be overwhelming at times, especially during a pandemic. An advocate is helping Baltimore’s Latino community get the best education for kids. RELATED: Maryland Weather: Multi-Day Snowfall To Impact State Starting Wednesday When it came time for Adolfo Martinez to apply for college, he didn’t know where to start. “It was definitely a challenging process,” Martinez said. “I would watch all of my friends and they would be like, ‘Oh yeah, my mom helped me with this and that.'” His mom Isabel is from Honduras and doesn’t speak much English. Their story is not unique among Baltimore’s Latino community. “Sometimes we can’t help, and in this moment Dinorah appeared in my life,” Isabel said. Dinorah Olmos is with the Latino Education and Advancement Fund. Her work helps hundreds of Latino parents and students pursue Baltimore’s academic programs. “I let them...
    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...
    As school systems throughout the D.C. region prepare to increase the number of students taking in-person classes, realities of an ongoing pandemic suggest hopes of “things getting back to normal in classrooms” is unrealistic — at least for now. Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam and Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan have each instructed school systems to offer in-person learning, in addition to distance-learning options, by next month while the country begins the process of vaccinating those most at risk from the spread of coronavirus. Teachers in both states are being prioritized in receiving COVID-19 vaccines. Over many months, many parents have expressed frustration that students learning virtually at home are being deprived of the benefits of being in a classroom with teachers and their peers. Now, as school boards move toward a phased return of in-person learning, some parents are learning that while socially distanced students will be in their school buildings...
    Students and their parents who want Fairfax County, Virginia, public schools to return to full-time in-person learning spoke out during a school board meeting Thursday. Some Fairfax County Public Schools students became emotional as they pleaded for a return to in-person learning five days per week. “Our mental health struggles are compounded by the fact that our peers who attend private school are thriving, attending school five days a week safely,” one female student said. “You can’t put a price tag on the damage that distance teaching has caused. Previously honor roll students, star athletes and passionate artists are now severely depressed,” said one mother. 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 Latest vaccination numbers in DC, Maryland and Virginia ‘You’re going to be unstoppable’: Md. school counselors provide support to...
    Alexandria City Public Schools is out with dates when students can return to in-person learning twice per week, as the superintendent of Arlington County Public Schools said he will specify return dates on Feb. 18. Citing metrics that show a slightly reduced risk of contracting COVID-19, the availability of vaccines for teachers and mitigation processes in place to prevent the spread of coronavirus within schools, Alexandria Superintendent Gregory Hutchings told county board members that conditions are ripe for a phased return to in-person learning. “We’re now ready, it is now time for this pivot,” Hutchings said. “We will be returning into our school buildings.” Noting it’s been almost a year since students were in school buildings with classmates and teachers, Hutchings said minimizing risk of spread within schools, and ensuring safety of students and staff, will be a top priority. “This is a pandemic that’s not going to end in...
    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.
    National School Counselor Week may be coming to a close, but the work of one Montgomery County, Maryland, counselor to help students get set for their futures continues. Bethlehem Beru is the resource counselor at Briggs Chaney Middle School in Silver Spring and the leader of a team of counselors. “Guidance counselor” isn’t used anymore, Beru said, and there’s much more to the job than simply helping students with college or career readiness. As middle-school counselors, there’s a lot of time spent helping students move through that phase where they’re no longer little kids but they’re not quite teenagers, Beru said. There’s a good deal of time helping them sort out the changes that they are going through, and part of that includes helping them learn to self-regulate. “Trying to help them with the skills they need to articulate their thoughts without being impulsive and making decisions that probably aren’t...
    ELLICOTT CITY, Md. (WJZ) — Howard County’s health department is rolling out COVID-19 vaccinations for educators to speed up the return to school, but there are not enough doses to go around. Troy Todd is an elementary school principal at Hanover Hills. He was among the first group of Howard County Public School administrators and staff to get a COVID-19 vaccine. “We’re excited overall to get back to a sense of normalcy,” Todd said. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines Todd has been going to school regularly. Up until now, there haven’t been many students in class, but Gov. Larry Hogan is urging school districts to start reopening on March 1. It’s a decision that has many teachers on edge. “And that’s their right and prerogative to wonder how is this all going to play out with these timelines...
    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...
    COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — Lured from Minnesota to take over for a coach who won 499 games at Maryland, Brenda Frese endured a miserable inaugural season that featured 18 losses and a one-and-done appearance in the 2003 Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament. Yet as the Terrapins headed home from North Carolina following their final defeat, then-athletic director Debbie Yow knew she made the right choice for the successor to future Hall of Fame coach Chris Weller. “I was on a plane with them and I heard Brenda say to her coaches: ‘OK, this year is done. If we ever miss the NCAA Tournament again, we’re not doing our jobs,’” Yow recalled this week. “And I thought: ‘OK, all right. That’s not what every coach would say.’” Given a full year to recruit a new crop of players, Frese rebounded to go 18-13 the following season. That launched a stretch in...
    COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — Lured from Minnesota to take over for a coach who won 499 games at Maryland, Brenda Frese endured a miserable inaugural season that featured 18 losses and a one-and-done appearance in the 2003 Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament. Yet as the Terrapins headed home from North Carolina following their final defeat, then-athletic director Debbie Yow knew she made the right choice for the successor to future Hall of Fame coach Chris Weller. “I was on a plane with them and I heard Brenda say to her coaches: ‘OK, this year is done. If we ever miss the NCAA Tournament again, we’re not doing our jobs,’” Yow recalled this week. “And I thought: ‘OK, all right. That’s not what every coach would say.’” Given a full year to recruit a new crop of players, Frese rebounded to go 18-13 the following season. That launched a stretch in...
    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...
    A recent study from the University of Maryland School of Medicine suggests that those who have had COVID-19 may only need one dose of the vaccine, which could alleviate shortages reported across the U.S. Researchers studied the antibody responses to a single dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines in health care workers who have had confirmed COVID-19 infections and compared them to the antibody responses of health care workers who have tested negative for the coronavirus. They found that those who have had COVID-19 had a “classic secondary response” to just one shot of the vaccine. Their antibodies started peaking at seven days and achieved higher titers and neutralization of the virus in 14 days compared to those who have tested negative. The implications of the study could provide a way to get more people vaccinated. “We think that in times of vaccine shortage, our findings preliminarily suggest the...
    Police in Maryland and D.C. have seen a steady increase in carjackings since the pandemic began last year. They call it a crime of opportunity and believe closures and lifestyle changes forced by the coronavirus have contributed to the rampant rise in carjackings. The close of 2020 saw carjackings up by 143% in D.C. compared to the year before, according to D.C. police data. In the first month of 2021, Montgomery County had 11 carjackings and attempted carjackings as compared with none in January 2020, said Montgomery County Police Sgt. Rebecca Innocenti. “So we think, because of the pandemic, a lot of people were taking advantage of restaurants that were offering takeout, and you know, it was a perfect opportunity for these suspects to approach these people, as either they exited their vehicle or came back to their vehicles,” Innocenti said. Many of them are teenagers who are not physically...
    Capital News Service — A bill in the Maryland State Legislature would grant school students excused absences for mental health reasons. Under the proposed law, students would be allowed to skip school once every quarter — without needing a doctor’s note. Sponsored by Del. Alonzo Washington D-Prince George’s, the legislation aims to alleviate mental health problems exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. “Right now, we know mental health and mental illness is running rampant, especially among students,” Washington told Capital News Service. Washington voiced concerns regarding the general mental health of students across Maryland. He noted that 70 percent of teens admit to experiencing anxiety and depression, that 1 in 6 say they have considered suicide. A lot of these issues, Washington said, can be traced back to difficult pedagogical environments. “We know the stress of school is a lot for high school students,” Washington said. Such stress can negatively affect academic...
    The COVID-19 vaccination rollout has been off to a “shaky start” in the U.S., according to Dr. Anthony Fauci. But Fauci, the director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is optimistic about the near future. “You will see, in the next few weeks, a much bigger escalation of the capability of getting vaccine into people’s arms,” he said Tuesday during a Washington Post Live event. Describing new cooperation, collaboration and synergy among the federal government, states and cities, Fauci said strategies underway now to improve distribution include getting pharmacies more involved, rolling out community mass vaccination centers and using mobile units to reach relatively inaccessible areas — “concentrating on the concept of equity to get, particularly, minority populations who may not have as easy access,” he said. Addressing issues of vaccine wariness in minority communities, Fauci said, is “critical” to achieve the goal of reaching so-called herd...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — If you have recovered from COVID-19, a new study says you may only need one dose of the vaccine. Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine studied 59 healthcare workers and found those who had the virus had a robust immune response after just one shot. This worked for both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines Doctors say this could help with the crippling shortage of vaccines. “If there’s a shortage for months on end and we need to quickly pivot and change policy, we should consider this data to suggest people who have had COVID-19 maybe shouldn’t be the ones getting the vaccine right away, or that they should only get a single dose,” Dr. Anthony Harris, with the University of Maryland School of Medicine, said. The...
    The Fairfax County school board on Tuesday voted to approve the latest draft plan for a return to in-school learning presented by Superintendent Scott Brabrand. The unanimous vote was a “consensus vote,” since the board was not scheduled to vote on the plan until Thursday. But Board member Megan McLaughlin, who ran the meeting, put the idea up for the earlier vote because it was clear that “there is strong support for this timeline,” and they wanted to get the information to the public as soon as possible. The draft plan calls for students in Groups 1 through 4 (certain CTE and special education students) to start going into school buildings two days a week beginning Feb. 16. Kindergartners and the remaining special education students would return Feb. 23. All students would be back in classrooms two days a week by March 16. The return-to-school plan approved by the Fairfax...
    On the first day back to school for about 9,000 D.C. Public Schools students, the Washington Teachers’ Union said some buildings did not meet the safety fixes the District agreed to make — and now teachers are threatening to strike. Union President Elizabeth Davis said that because teachers found some necessary changes were not made upon their return, they are now questioning which other metrics were not addressed. “Teachers want to go back to in-school learning when they are assured that the buildings are safe,” Davis said. The union wants DCPS Chancellor Lewis Ferebee and Mayor Muriel Bowser to agree to host walk-throughs of each school building with parents, teachers and other stakeholders, so everyone can feel they are proceeding safely with in-person learning. If not, Davis said, they’ll have no choice but to poll members on whether they want to take a vote to strike. Ahead of her statement...
    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.
    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...
    COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — A bill in the Maryland state Legislature would grant school students excused absences for mental health reasons. Under the proposed law, students would be allowed to skip school once every quarter — without needing a doctor’s note. Sponsored by Del. Alonzo Washington D-Prince George’s, the legislation aims to alleviate mental health problems exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Washington voiced concerns regarding the general mental health of students across Maryland. He noted that 70 percent of teens admit to experiencing anxiety and depression, that 1 in 6 say they have considered suicide. Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.
    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...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — School resource officers in Maryland may soon only enter schools mainly during an emergency — a plan the bill sponsor said will help minority students feel more comfortable, but police said it presents safety concerns. SB0245, sponsored by Sen. Arthur Ellis, D-Charles, establishes numerous restrictions on school resource officers in what he told Capital News Service is a plan to ensure students, especially those of color, feel more comfortable at school. Clyde Boatwright, president of the Maryland State Lodge Fraternal Order of Police, told CNS his organization plans to testify against the bill due to concerns over school safety. Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.
    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...
    TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — A person involved in the meal distribution program at Overlea High School has recently tested positive for COVID-19, Baltimore County Public Schools said Thursday.  Meal distribution from the site will continue uninterrupted, the school system said. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines According to BCPS, everyone who had close contact with this individual has been identified, notified and will remain away from school facilities until they are cleared to return by the Baltimore County Department of Health. Facilities that were involved in this instance have been cleaned in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention protocols, BCPS said. BCPS added 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 place....
    Teachers in Prince George’s County, Maryland, are set to start getting COVID-19 vaccine appointments this weekend, part of a big push to get school employees vaccinated before students return to classrooms this spring, the school system announced. Prince George’s County Public Schools is working with the county health department and Kaiser Permanente to provide vaccinations for teachers and other school staff members, according to a news release Thursday. The appointments start this weekend and are expected to run for six to eight weeks. “From the beginning of the pandemic, the safety of our students and staff has been my top priority as we navigate these unprecedented times,” schools CEO Monica Goldson said in a statement. “With the arrival of a COVID-19 vaccine, I am encouraging all Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) employees to get vaccinated for their own safety and that of the children and families we serve.” To...
    PERRY HALL, Md. (WJZ) — As multiple Maryland school districts start announcing their reopening plans amid the COVID-19 pandemic, one of the state’s largest counties has yet to publish a date of when in-person learning of some form will begin. Gov. Larry Hogan has called on all schools to be open or working in that direction, but Baltimore County Schools students are still virtual. RELATED COVERAGE: Howard County School Board Approves Plan To Move Toward Hybrid In-Person Learning Some Harford County Students Will Return To School Once A Week Starting March 1 COVID Latest: Cecil County Public Schools To Bring Students Back One Day A Week Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan Calls On Schools To Move To Hybrid In-Person Learning By March 1 On the schools’ website, next to the dates February-June 2021 it states, “If it is safe to do so, BCPS will implement a hybrid instructional model...
    COLUMBIA, Md. (WJZ) — The Howard County School Board on Tuesday approved a plan that will phase students in to hybrid in-person learning beginning in March. The plan the board approved has special education students and others who have been identified to take part in a program for in-person learning up to five days per week set to return the week of March 1. 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 Younger students — those in pre-kindergarten through second grade — are set to return under the hybrid model beginning the week of March 15. Students in grades 3, 4, 5, 6, 9 and 12, as well as students in career and technical education, will move to the hybrid model the week of March 29, while the remaining students —...
    The Maryland State Board of Education has denied a Montgomery County request for four school days to be canceled in the beginning of March, when the county is scheduled to phase back into in-person learning. In a letter to the state board, Montgomery County Superintendent Jack Smith said a waiver for March 9-12 is necessary to allow teachers to set up classrooms, practice compliance with coronavirus protocols and finalize student schedules and transportation matters. “The waiver of four days will allow staff to complete this important work without requiring divided attention from virtual instruction and support for students,” the letter says. Smith also requested the waiver because the county will “start with our youngest learners and students with the greatest need for learning support, some of whom have never navigated a school building before.” But in its response, the state said to be eligible for a waiver, school systems are...
    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...
    More On: lawsuits Here’s where the lawsuits over Kobe Bryant’s helicopter crash stand now NJ doc once accused of pretending to be good Samaritan sued over botched birth Cops assaulted, berated 5-year-old as ‘violent little thing’, lawsuit claims Rudy Giuliani sued for $1.3B over election fraud claims The parents of an autistic Maryland teen have filed a suit against his school, claiming negligence led their son to choke to death on a glove. Bryan and Tanya Levy allege that there wasn’t adequate supervision when their 17-year-old son, Bowen, got a hold of the rubber glove at Central Special School in Edgewater and ingested it, the Capital Gazette reported. The suit claims that Bowen’s classroom typically would have a teacher, two teacher assistants in addition to an aide assigned to him. But on the day that he choked, his one-to-one aide was absent, the teacher had left in the afternoon and there...
    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....
    Two Maryland police officers assaulted and admonished a 5-year-old boy who walked off from school – with one deriding the kindergartener as a “violent little thing,” a lawsuit claims. Shanta Grant, of Silver Spring, alleged in a civil suit filed Jan. 13 in Montgomery County seeking more than $1 million in damages that her son “walked out” of East Silver Spring Elementary School class while being improperly supervised in January 2020. Two responding Montgomery County officers then caught up with the boy about two-tenths of a mile away and one of them, Officer Kevin Christmon, started aggressively chastising him and “forcefully grabbed” the youngster’s arm, the suit claims. “Christmon’s tone and demeanor directed at [the boy] was more befitting a criminal, rather than a scared five-year-old child,” the suit states. “[The child] started to cry and Christmon continued to hold his [arm] and told him to ‘cut it out.’”...
    More On: lawsuits Rudy Giuliani sued for $1.3B over election fraud claims Tish James’ lawsuit against NYPD over last summer’s riots is pure politics Working from home while kids learn remote drives NYC mom near ‘breakdown’: lawsuit NY attorney general files lawsuit over nuclear plant shutdown plan Two Maryland police officers assaulted and admonished a 5-year-old boy who walked off from school – with one deriding the kindergartener as a “violent little thing,” a lawsuit claims. Shanta Grant, of Silver Spring, alleged in a civil suit filed Jan. 13 in Montgomery County seeking more than $1 million in damages that her son “walked out” of East Silver Spring Elementary School class while being improperly supervised in January 2020. Two responding Montgomery County officers then caught up with the boy about two-tenths of a mile away and one of them, Officer Kevin Christmon, started aggressively chastising him and “forcefully grabbed”...
    D.C. public school teachers will start to get the coronavirus vaccine Monday, a week before thousands of students return for in-person learning. Teachers and support staff at D.C. public schools who are already reporting in-person or who will return to classrooms next week are first in line to receive the vaccine. The school system is partnering with Children’s National Hospital to give the shots at Dunbar High School. Public schoolteachers and staff not eligible to participate during this phase will be vaccinated starting Feb. 1. Currently, 79 D.C. public schools are offering in-person instruction to about 1,000 students. Close to 4,000 additional students plan to return to the classroom on Feb. 1. 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 ‘Need to do better’: Fauci on WHO, COVID-19 variants, vaccines and more...
    Texas man charged in Capitol riots threatened to kill Rep. Ocasio-Cortez Fauci tells MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow he was ‘blocked’ from going on her show, says Trump administration ‘rejected’ science QB1 star Lance LeGendre decides on new school Former “QB1: Beyond the Lights” star Lance LeGendre has found a new home in college football. © Photo by Tony Quinn/Icon Sportswire Lance LeGendre announced on Friday that he is transferring to from Maryland to Louisiana Lafayette. LeGendre announced on Friday that he is transferring to Louisiana Lafayette. Thankful for the opportunity! #GeauxCajuns @coach_bnapier@CoachJuluke@CoachRyanO@RaginCajunsFB pic.twitter.com/qv9QeZolYe — Mr. LeGendre (@LLeGendre12_) January 22, 2021 LeGendre spent two seasons at Maryland. The redshirt freshman appeared in three games each year and went 12-for-17 for 98 yards and two interceptions. He rushed 19 times for 93 yards over his two seasons. Last season, LeGendre was third on Maryland’s depth chart behind Taulia Tagovailoa, who transferred from...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (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 State leaders said plans have been in place for months that would allow students and teachers to go back to a safe environment. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines But Cindy Sexton, the President of for the Teachers Association of Baltimore County, said members are angry. “That was really a gut punch for all of the teachers who were watching. It was very surprising to hear that,” Sexton said. On Thursday, Gov. Hogan said he’d use any...
    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...
    Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said his administration is urging all school districts to begin preparing for a return to hybrid learning by no later than March 1. The governor said that virtual learning models for schooling had disproportionately impacted low-income students and students of color during the COVID-19 pandemic. Hogan said the state Board of Education had approved “safe and effective” reopening plans for all of Maryland’s school systems, and that state health officials would soon provide additional “science-based protocols” for safely reopening schools. Unlimited coronavirus testing has been made available to every county, Hogan said in his announcement. The state will also provide 2 million face masks; 200,000 face shields; hand sanitizer; gowns and gloves to schools to assist in the reopening process. This is a developing story. Stay with WTOP for more details.  More Coronavirus News Sign up for WTOP alerts Latest coronavirus test results in DC,...
    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...
    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...
    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...
    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...
    Coronavirus conditions have not improved enough to bring more students and staff back into classrooms, according to the Loudoun County School Board. All Loudoun County, Virginia, public school students have been doing distance learning since a December spike in positivity rates throughout the D.C. region. Before that spike, the plan for Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) was to allow middle and high school students to choose a return to two-day-per-week in-person learning for the start of the 2nd semester, beginning next week, Jan. 21. But in a Tuesday meeting, the Loudoun County School Board voted the opportunity to return to any in-person learning would have to wait for the foreseeable future. The decision was based upon the fact that positivity rates throughout the D.C. region are in the “highest risk” category and continue rise, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Loudoun County teachers and school staff...
    The school board in Anne Arundel County, Maryland, voted early Friday to implement a hybrid learning program for as many students as possible by March 1. The approved plan, which is dependent on health and safety metrics in the county, calls on Superintendent George Arlotto to allow smaller groups of students to return as soon as possible too. Special needs students and English language learners would be among them, according to a news release. Before Friday’s vote, the board had aimed to establish the hybrid learning model in elementary schools for the start of the second semester, which begins Feb. 2. The vote delays the return by a month. Board members urged Arlotto to present a timeline explaining how the reopening plan will be implemented and provide an update on reopening plans by Feb. 17. They called on Arlotto to identify students who can’t be successful in a virtual learning...
    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...
    Teachers and school staff in Montgomery County, Maryland, are awaiting their turn for a COVID-19 vaccine, which is not expected until late January at the earliest. Following the county school board’s decision Tuesday night to delay in-person learning until at least March 15, schools Superintendent Jack Smith said there’s no benchmark for the number of teacher and staff vaccinations needed before in-person learning can resume. “Having the vaccination available to school system employees is critical,” Smith told a monthly news briefing. “So, there’s a lot of work going on around this, and I don’t think there’s any set percentage of our total staff members that we expect to see at any given moment.” However, Smith indicated that increasing numbers of staff vaccinations would boost confidence in the safety of in-person learning. “Our goal would be to continue to use the vaccine as yet another way to provide confidence in the...
    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...
    Second- and third-graders in Prince William County, Virginia, public schools are returning to in-person learning Tuesday and Wednesday. The students will be joining students pre-K through first grade, who resumed in-person learning in November and December. While that may be welcome news to some students and parents, some teachers are concerned about the spread of COVID-19. “We are not comfortable with the safety of the situation,” said Chuck Ronco, a calculus and geometry teacher at Unity Reed High School in Manassas and vice president of the Prince William Education Association. According to the Virginia Department of Health, Prince William County’s seven-day average of new cases per 100,000 people is 57 as of Monday. “Prince William County is the highest for both positivity and number of new cases in the Northern Virginia area, so it’s definitely of great concern. We have to be paying attention to those numbers. We can’t ignore...
    TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — A rally held Saturday welcomed parents, students and all those who wanted to see Baltimore County Public Schools students back in the classrooms. After months of virtual learning amid the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the students said they’ve had enough. CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: TIMELINE: Coronavirus In Maryland, Tracking The Spread Latest coronavirus stories from WJZ Latest CDC Guidelines “Virtual learning is not working,” one parent said. “Kids need to be in school.” After nearly a year of virtual learning and empty classrooms, students are frustrated. Aileen Kammer has four kids in Baltimore County schools. “The experiences with online school has just been terrible,” Kammer said. She said virtual learning alone is not enough. “I hope the school board is listening and paying attention and knowing the needs of the students,” Kammer added. The grassroots organization “Reopen BCPS” is 2,500 strong and growing every day, adding...
    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...
    Maryland Rep. Jamie Raskin and his wife, Sarah Bloom Raskin, released a loving tribute to their son, who died last week. Raskin announced on New Year’s Eve that his son Thomas Bloom Raskin, 25, had died. “On the last hellish brutal day of that godawful miserable year of 2020, when hundreds of thousands of Americans and millions of people all over the world died alone in bed in the darkness from an invisible killer disease ravaging their bodies and minds, we also lost our dear, dear, beloved son, Hannah and Tabitha’s beloved irreplaceable brother, a radiant light in this broken world,” Raskin said in a statement published on Medium. Tommy, as he was known to his family, was “raised on a fine Montgomery County Education,” Raskin said — from Takoma Park and Pine Crest elementary schools, Eastern Middle School and Montgomery Blair High School. He also studied in Paris during...
    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...