Baltimore County Now
Blake Lubinski, Communications Intern, Baltimore County Public Schools
Great news! You made the team – Team BCPS!
Team BCPS includes ALL current, former and future students, teachers, staff, parents, neighbors, volunteers and supporters of Baltimore County Public Schools – everyone whose lives are impacted by the County school system.
Tomorrow, Wednesday, January 15, 2014, BCPS will launch “We Are Team BCPS,” a new campaign intended to promote pride in and encourage engagement with the school system. Unfolding over the year, the campaign will include multiple opportunities for community involvement.
Among the opportunities is Team BCPS Day. Scheduled for the campaign’s launch date, the day calls upon the community to dress in “BCPS blue” (which is any shade of blue) and submit photographs and videos. The best photographs and videos received through Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/BaltCoPS) and Twitter (@BaltCoPS, #BCPSblue) will appear on the BCPS website, www.bcps.org, and Facebook page.
A second opportunity for involvement is through story-sharing. BCPS invites Team members to share their stories of the school system’s impact on their lives through short paragraphs and videos. Select testimonials submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org will appear on BCPS-TV, the BCPS “Deliberate Excellence” blog, the BCPS Facebook page or in the weekly BCPS e-newsletter.
The community may become involved online, as well. In addition to the debut of a new “We Are Team BCPS” page offering opportunities to get involved with the school system, the BCPS alumni webpage allows former students to relate their high-quality BCPS education to their accomplishments in their respective professions. Graduates may submit high-resolution photographs and brief profiles, including the name of their alma mater, a short description of major achievements/activities and thoughts about BCPS’s role in preparing them for the future, to email@example.com. Any nominations for inclusion on the alumni page must include direct contact information for the nominee.
Visit the BCPS website to learn more. And don’t forget to go blue. Team BCPS is bound to score on January 15!
Baltimore County Department of Economic Development, Workforce Development
"Working this summer made me a better person, a better employee and a better student." That's how one youth described his experience after participating in Baltimore County's 2013 Summer Youth Employment Program.
Over 200 participants ages 15-22 participated in this six-week program designed for youth to gain an appreciation of the labor market, gain insights into their own strengths as employable citizens, and learn marketable skills. Youth who were homeless, in foster care, disabled and economically disadvantaged worked 30 hours a week earning $8.00 an hour. The work experiences were provided by over 75 employers from the County's business community including public, private and non-profit organizations. Wages were supported by funds from the Division of Rehabilitation Services, Department of Social Services, Maryland Summer Youth Connections and the Workforce Investment Act. The summer program was sponsored by Baltimore County Department of Economic Development – Division of Workforce Development.
A highlight was New Horizon II, a partnership among Baltimore County’s Division of Workforce Development, Y of Central Maryland, Harry and Jeannette Weinberg Foundation and Baltimore County Public Schools. The program provided 25 homeless youth, ages 15 – 21 a morning of academic instruction and employability training, followed by an afternoon of real-world work experience. The academic program, administered by Baltimore County Public School teachers, assisted youth in attaining the necessary credits to graduate from high school. Since the program was located in Dundalk, work experiences were provided by area businesses including the Dundalk Eagle, Dundalk Renaissance Corporation, Police Athletic League, Access Art, and Blue Ocean Property Management.
The summer program was a win-win for youth and employers. Youth gained valuable experience working as office clerks, senior center aides, camp counselors and custodians. Employers served as mentors and taught the youth basic work skills. Both youth and employers experienced a summer they will never forget. As one young participant said, "When I leave this program, I will take with me some work experience, some new friends, and a different outlook on the world of work."
To Dr. Dance and his administrative team: Thank you for creating such a positive school climate all across Baltimore County. Team BCPS is a reality, and it’s making a difference in our children’s lives.
To all of the administrators, teachers and support staff: Thank you for all you do for Baltimore County’s students each and every day. I know that many of you worked all summer preparing for the 2013-2014 school year, and as I drove by schools this weekend, I saw the parked cars of many educators who were putting the finishing touches on classrooms and getting ready for the most exciting day of the school year.
To our students: I know that many of you are very nervous, particularly our kindergarten students, 6th and 9th graders. Thank you for taking school so seriously. As I go from school to school, I’m always incredibly impressed by how hard students are working. Keep up the good work!
And finally, to our parents: I want to thank you most of all. You have been there from the beginning. You were the first to teach your sons and daughters their numbers and letters. You read them their first books. You take them to band practice and pick them up from student council. You take them to the zoo, science center and aquarium. You make them do their homework, make sure they have a good breakfast, and you work hard to teach them the difference between right and wrong. You are the foundation upon which BPCS rests.
I hope all of you have a wonderful year, and let’s continue to make the Baltimore County Public School System one of the best in the nation.