Baltimore's students are filled with talent, dreams, and enormous potential. Our responsibility is to help them develop the knowledge and skills they need to pursue the future that calls them. Building a Generation: City Schools’ Blueprint for Success lays out how we are making that happen.
Based on research and conversations with hundreds of stakeholders, the blueprint focuses on three areas to help students reach their goals:
• Student wholeness
• Staff leadership
These areas go hand in hand: If students are motivated and excited about learning, have the skills to think critically, analyze deeply, and express themselves powerfully, and have adults around them who encourage them to persist and excel, they can progress toward high school graduation and postsecondary success.
Our students are unique people with unique experiences, talents, challenges, and social, emotional, and physical lives. By keeping the wholeness of our students in mind, meeting their needs, hearing their voices, and building partnerships with their families and communities, we can ignite their passion for learning.
Work in the area of "student wholeness" takes many forms. For example:
When reading, writing, speaking, and listening are part of learning in all subject areas, students gain complex knowledge, deep conceptual understanding, and the ability to write well and express themselves powerfully. This is the literacy our students want and deserve in order to access what interests them, and it is what they need for success not only in all school subjects, but in careers and in life.
To support students in reaching their goals, City Schools is focusing on professional learning for staff:
International and national studies — not to mention our own students — tell us consistently about the importance of teachers and other adults for student success. High-performing education systems around the world emphasize the professionalism of highly qualified teachers and have systems in place to encourage professional learning that focuses on the curriculum teachers teach; they work to develop leaders at all levels and ensure that collaboration, coaching, and mentoring are an essential part of the work day.
With the blueprint, City Schools is prioritizing leadership and continuous professional growth to create a culture where staff and students alike know that learning is valued and celebrated.
A key implementation strategy is establishing “intensive learning sites” where additional resources are supporting accelerated growth in literacy or key components of student wholeness. After competitive application, 55 schools were named intensive learning sites for the 2018-19 school year, and 40 more sites will be added in 2019-20.
Find which schools are intensive sites by visiting our school profiles, and filtering under the "Program" menu.
In 2019, local school systems transitioned to the new Local ESSA Consolidated Strategic Plan for accountability, reporting, and school improvement. This plan includes goals, objectives, and strategies to promote academic excellence among all students to address areas of focus based on the analysis of state standardized data.