Big pay hikes for teachers proposed, along with a career ladder

Big increases in teacher salaries along with the creation of statewide career ladder that would put teachers in line with other “high-status professions” are among the key recommendations a statewide commission on school funding will make to the legislature this year. The Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education, charged with looking at a wide range of education issues, will also recommend teams of teachers be given greater autonomy and spend less time in the classroom and more time collaborating on teaching strategies.

Auditors slam financial practices at Baltimore City Community College

Legislative auditors issued a damning report about lax and possibly illegal financial practices at Baltimore City Community College, an institution already under state pressure to fix its dwindling enrollment and improve its management. BCCC is the only one of the state’s 16 community colleges directly under state sponsorship and funding.

Industrial runoff fouls Bay, threatens communities, report says

Unbeknownst to most Marylanders, many industrial facilities are polluting state waters and the Chesapeake Bay with their stormwater runoff, while also threatening the health of neighboring communities, says a new report by a pair of environmental groups. The groups blame weak state controls and lax enforcement. More than one-third of the Maryland facilities that reported their stormwater discharges from 2014 to March of this year exceeded pollution limits for potentially harmful chemicals, according to records reviewed by the Center for Progressive Reform and the Environmental Integrity Project, both Washington-based nonprofits.

More career programs in Md. schools one aim of Kirwan commission

In 2016, there were 97,857 students in Maryland enrolled in career and technology education programs across the 237 schools that offered them. A state education commission, helmed by former University System of Maryland Chancellor Brit Kirwan, is weighing how to increase the scope and funding for these programs as part of its broad look into improving Maryland schools.

New Faces Part 4: Montgomery County Chinese language programs link students to culture

Thirty-four percent of Montgomery County’s population is foreign-born. Of the seven districts that make up the county, two are more populated with Chinese-born people than any other nationality, according to a Capital News Service analysis. The large Chinese presence has had multiple effects in the surrounding area, including in the schools, where Chinese is taught.