An open letter to Delegate Rick Impallaria District 7 Representative

Dear Delegate Impallaria,

Your Commentary in the Aegis on March 13, 2020 has several misleading statements on the Kirwan Commission proposal to reform the Maryland public school offerings. If you are truly concerned about the future of our children, I suggest you read the article in the Sunday Baltimore Sun edition by Liz Bowie. “Kids ‘are in survival mode’ Schools with high poverty rates hope for Kirwan funding.” (March 15, 2020) 

Their hope includes your support. The article accurately illustrates the need for improving the educational programs for Maryland’s children in the public schools, especially in those schools with high poverty rates. In the article, the principal of Hazelwood Elementary/Middle School in Northeast Baltimore details how the funds provided for this school year have made a significant difference in the students’ responses to the improvements.

The Kirwan Commission proposal is not the old Thornton program repackaged as you stated.  Unlike the Thornton program, Kirwan has included in its proposal an Independent Oversight Board that would have the authority to make certain the new funds are used to implement the Commission’s recommendations and determine if the schools are achieving the desired results. 

The educational strategies recommended by Kirwan have proven to be highly successful in top-performing countries. Massachusetts adopted these strategies and is the only state in the U.S. that performs at a high standard internationally.

The children in Harford County’s public schools have already benefited this year from the additional money provided by the General Assembly for school year 2019-2020.

The grants have allowed Harford’s public schools to improve their special education offerings, concentrate on students in poverty schools, address the needs of struggling learners, and improve teacher salaries.

If you really are concerned about the future of our children, then you should support programs that speak to the needs of children in Maryland’s public schools that have no where to go but to continue to live in their low-income communities. Your party line programs for charter schools and student vouchers only address the tip of the iceberg of the educational needs of our children in Maryland.

New Harford Democratic Club
3 South Rogers Street
Aberdeen, MD 21001
Education Committee
Contact John Barham