$1.1 Billion in New Funding for Staffing, Expanding Student Programs and Supports, and Salaries
Our big win in the 2019 General Assembly funded the first three years of the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future, adding $1.1 billion in new funding for improved salaries, staffing, and student programs.
Now it’s time to update the state funding formula — making sure that every school in the state has adequate and equitable resources through fully and sustainably funding the Blueprint over the long term.
“Winning at the state level — and taking advantage of the recommendations of the Kirwan Commission — will open up the door to more raises, more staffing, and more programs that make a difference for students at the local level,” said Cheryl Bost, MSEA president. “We must be successful in Annapolis. Then, our job will be to make sure that money is spent on the right things so the implementation of the Blueprint is done right for each local school system and its students and educators.”
But that’s just a start. Now we need a funding commitment that is long term and sustainable so our students get the academic and social supports they need.
It’s exciting that we’re partnering on the forums with so many pro-public education friends,” said Bost. “We’re working with dozens of other community organizations from across the state who all want to raise awareness and raise funding for our schools. This is the type of coalition and power we need to build so we can win during the 2020 legislative session.”
Locals across the state are holding community forums to help spread the word on the promise of the Blueprint, the significance of its passage, and the critical need for a formula that can build on — and, most critically, sustain — the recommendations.
Nearly 100 folks attended Harford County’s Blueprint for Maryland’s Future Community Forum September 25 at Bel Air High School. Listening, sharing, and asking questions were panelists — including student, PTA, educator representatives, a former member of the board of education, and MSEA’s own Sean Johnson — and five of seven county council members, three state delegates, and a member of the board of education.
As the forums gain traction around the state, educators and community members are coming together to learn more about what the Blueprint can mean for them — in Howard County more than 70 educators and community members attended their county’s first community forum; neary 100 in Charles County; more than 200 in Baltimore County and nearly 65 in Allegany County.
Our community forums and current ad campaign are focusing on educating the public about the promise of the Blueprint. “I hope we’re on the cusp of a real change for our students, schools, and profession,” said Bost. “It starts with building partnerships and awareness — and we want to see it end with a major win in Annapolis next spring. Now is the time to raise our voices to get what we need for our students and schools.”
“We’ve been working hard to educate our elected leaders and the public about what it really takes to provide the great learning experience we all want for every student and what the Blueprint can do for Harford County,” said Mike Curry, vice president of the Harford County Education Association.
“These forums help position us as leaders in our communities. We’re not going to meetings, funding hearings, or negotiations with requests only — we’re contributing and leading with our expertise.”