State Roundup: School board shifts focus to Blueprint; Dem governor hopefuls hail HBCUs, push economic issues; counties tackle police accountability boards

State Roundup: School board shifts focus to Blueprint; Dem governor hopefuls hail HBCUs, push economic issues; counties tackle police accountability boards

Gubernatorial candidate Rushern Baker says he will make the State Center redevelopment a priority if he is elected. (See item below). Pictured is the corner of Howard Street, foreground, and Preston Street looking southwest toward the state office complex and the armory to the right. Photo taken in 2014.

STATE SCHOOL BOARD EYES BLUEPRINT: With mask mandates largely lifted in schools and a growing public consensus around a return to a pre-pandemic normal, Maryland’s State Board of Education on Tuesday moved its focus from prioritizing in-person learning to implementing a sweeping 10-year plan to overhaul the state’s educational system and making “transformative change.” It passed a resolution meant to anchor the board’s work before they finish their multi-year strategic plan to implement the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future by next fall. Elizabeth Shwe/Maryland Matters.

DEM GOV HOPEFULS HAIL HBCUs, PUSH ECONOMIC ISSUES: Democratic candidates for governor pledged Tuesday night to leverage state and federal dollars to fuel economic and workforce development, revitalize public transportation efforts, fight rising crime and overhaul Maryland’s public education if elected. Sam Janesh/The Baltimore Sun.

  • The candidates in Maryland’s Democratic gubernatorial primary hailed the state’s historically Black colleges and universities as a remedy for inequity during the forum at Coppin State University. Hannah Gaskill/Maryland Matters.
  • While the overarching subject was economic opportunity, it’s hard to ignore crime’s impact on that across the city of Baltimore. The candidates didn’t talk explicitly about crime-fighting strategies, but one question did prompt the candidates to discuss the need for strong relationships between the community and police. Margaret Chadbourn/WBFF-TV.

BAKER VOWS REDEVELOPMENT OF STATE CENTER: State Center, the rundown complex of government buildings in Midtown Baltimore with an on-and-off history of redevelopment proposals, finds itself in the center of the Democratic Party’s gubernatorial primary, with Rushern Baker III, a Democratic gubernatorial candidate, saying that revitalizing the 28-acre site will be one of his first priorities if elected. Johanna Alonso/The Daily Record.

  • Baker’s campaign also accused a leading rival — Comptroller Peter Franchot (D) — of withdrawing support for the project to curry favor with a Democratic donor and powerbroker who owns commercial property in the city. The Franchot campaign cited other concerns to support his decision. Bruce DePuyt/Maryland Matters.

COX, PEROUTKA ATTEND CONSPIRACY-THEMED CONFERENCE: Gubernatorial candidate Dan Cox, Attorney General candidate Michael Peroutka and state Senate candidate Rick Bowers attended a recent conference that leaned heavily into QAnon themes. And there is video of some of the presentations. Brian Griffiths/The Duckpin.

FREDERICK COUNCIL OKs POLICE BOARD CRITERIA: The Frederick County Council on Tuesday unanimously approved criteria for who can serve on the county’s 11-member Police Accountability Board. The board will receive complaints of misconduct against police officers in the county. It also will identify trends in the disciplinary process of police officers and make recommendations on changes to policy, training or supervision. Jack Hogan/The Frederick News Post.

BA CO POLICE BOARD PLAN CALLED WEAK: Baltimore County’s plan to create a police accountability board came under fire Tuesday night from people who fear it will be too weak to make a difference. The County Council heard from residents who questioned the makeup of the board and the powers it will have. John Lee/WYPR-FM.

HARFORD SCHOOL BOARD RAISES CONCERN OVER HEALTH CURRICULUM: he Board of Education of Harford County discussed the future of Harford County Public Schools’ elementary school health curriculum with a team that developed the curriculum. That team also fielded several questions from the board, which board members said came from parents who have contacted them with concerns about the new curriculum. Tony Roberts/The Aegis.

MO CO SCHOOLS, POLICE SIGN AGREEMENT: Montgomery County’s school district and police department privately signed an agreement that would bring law enforcement back into schools effective last week, but they informed the public and county council of the finalized contract Tuesday. Nicole Asbury/The Washington Post.

DEBATE OVER CITY DOLLAR HOUSE REVIVAL DEVOLVES: The debate over a proposed revival of Baltimore’s Dollar House program erupted into a verbal melee among the members of the Baltimore City Council and the public as people flooded City Hall on Tuesday, filling council chambers and pounding on Mayor Brandon Scott’s office door. Emily Opilo/The Baltimore Sun.

STATE, BA CO TEAM UP TO REVIVE SECURITY SQUARE MALL: Baltimore County and state leaders will provide $20 million in funding for the community-driven revitalization of Security Square Mall and the surrounding areas — the mall’s first improvement since 1998. Tony Roberts/The Baltimore Sun.

  • The new funding – $10 million allocated in the county’s budget and $10 million secured in the state capital budget by House Speaker Adrienne Jones – will build on recent steps the county has taken to revitalize the mall. Laura Stewart/Baltimore Fishbowl.

About The Author

Cynthia Prairie

Contributing Editor Cynthia Prairie has been a newspaper editor since 1979, when she began working at The Raleigh Times. Since then, she has worked for The Baltimore News American, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Prince George’s Journal and Baltimore County newspapers in the Patuxent Publishing chain, including overseeing The Jeffersonian when it was a two-day a week business publication. Cynthia has won numerous state awards, including the Maryland State Bar Association’s Gavel Award. Besides compiling and editing the daily State Roundup, she runs her own online newspaper, The Chester Telegraph. If you have additional questions or comments contact Cynthia at:

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