On July 1, 2007, Andres Alonso officially became chief executive officer of Baltimore Schools. He will oversee approximately 180 schools and 82,000 students, with the help and guidance of the Baltimore Schools master plan. The master plan is guided by the Baltimore Schools vision, which is clear, desirable, and inspiring:
“Accelerating the academic achievement of all students, in partnership with the entire community, to ensure that students have the attitudes, skills, and proficiencies needed to succeed in college and in the 21st century global workforce. ”
The district believes that achieving this vision is entirely possible by fulfilling the Baltimore Schools mission:
“To accelerate student progress through effective implementation of the Baltimore Schools master plan, focusing on quality instruction, managing systems efficiently, and sustaining a culture of excellence. ”
The Baltimore Schools master plan priorities have been established in accordance with State guidelines and provide the core of the school system's plans for improving the academic achievement of all students. Goals of this master plan as listed below:
Goal 1: By 2013-2014, all Baltimore Schools students will reach high standards, at a minimum attaining proficiency or better in reading/language arts, and mathematics.
Goal 2: All Baltimore Schools students that have limited English proficiency will become proficient in English and reach high academic standards, at a minimum attaining proficiency or better in reading/language arts and mathematics.
Goal 3: By 2005-2006, all core academic subject classes (CAS) will be taught by highly qualified teachers.
Goal 4: All students will be educated in learning environments that are safe, drug-free, and conducive to learning.
Goal 5: All students will graduate from high school
Goal 6: Effective management of systems will support student achievement. Such systems cover accountability, communications with parents, the community, and business partners. Baltimore Schools recognize that making a difference for its students is more than simply writing a check. Many businesses provide assistance to schools in a variety of ways including the donation of materials, merchandise and volunteer hours. There is growing evidence that school/business partnerships improve the capacity of individual families, schools and communities. Businesses are thus more willing to support teaching and learning. When students connect school work with the world of work, they are motivated to learn. There are several ways that businesses can help out Baltimore Schools: mentoring, tutoring, becoming a guest reader, giving monetary contributions, and donating school supplies. However, donations can range from pencils to computers; books to playground equipment; flowers to furniture. Volunteering in Baltimore Schools, offering internships to Baltimore Schools students, or joining the staff as an adjunct faculty member are also ways for businesses to maintain a healthy partnerships with Baltimore Schools.
It is also a goal of the district that finances and operations of facilities, transportation, and nutrition services within Baltimore Schools will be effective and efficient. Throughout all of Baltimore Schools, students, parents, teachers, and administrators have many opportunities to experience the positive changes that implementing this master plan can offer.
Patricia Hawke is a staff writer for Schools K-12, providing free, in-depth reports on all U. S. public and private K-12 schools. For more information please visit Baltimore Schools