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Baltimore County News

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Date: Jan 30, 2017

By Dr. S. Dallas Dance, Superintendent, Baltimore County Public Schools

Last year, BCPS used Stakeholder Survey data to guide school improvement, identify staff training areas, improve office safety, and help staff work better together. Your responses can help us improve even more! We want to hear from students in Grades 4-12, parents, community members, and staff.

Available online through March 3, the survey is anonymous and takes five minutes or less on a phone, tablet, or computer. New this year, the survey is available for students, parents, and community members in 16 languages: Amharic, Arabic, Burmese, Chinese, English, French, Gujarati, Korean, Nepali, Russian, Spanish, Tagalog, Urdu, Uzbek, Vietnamese, and Yoruba.

In addition to your role as a community member, if you are a parent or staff member, you are encouraged to take the survey more than once to reflect those different roles.

I want to hear from our whole community. Please take the survey by March 3, and encourage others to share their voices!

The County Executive’s statement is below:

“Like many of us, the issue of immigration has personal connections.  In 1906, my grandfather arrived in this country at the age of eighteen aboard the German vessel Rheine. His name was David Kamenetz.  Although he emigrated from Zagar, Russia, escaping czarist persecution, he bore the name of his forefathers’ town of Kamenetz-Podolsk, once part of Russia but now a city of 100,000 in the western Ukraine.

Grandpa settled in Jewish Baltimore and became a tailor.  As a ‘greenhorn,’ he married an American woman, but never became a citizen. He lived through two World Wars, the Great Depression, operated Kay’s Tailors in Hamilton. He paid his taxes and obeyed the laws.  He practiced his religion, raised his family, and educated his four children.  Grandpa loved this country as the greatest place on earth.

When Grandpa first arrived, he went through Ellis Island, where he could see Lady Liberty welcoming him.  The plaque at the base of the Statue of Liberty reads: ‘Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!’  I would not be here today had the United States of America not lifted her lamp beside that golden door for my family. This past weekend, Lady Liberty wept.

President Trump’s executive order imposing a Muslim ban is an affront to the very values that make us proud to be Americans.  Our Founding Fathers were united in the belief that America’s pluralism would be its north star. In his seminal work, 'Common Sense,' Thomas Paine wrote that this place called America would be a refuge for the ‘persecuted lovers of civil and religious liberty.’ 

For nearly two hundred and fifty years, generations of immigrants have arrived on our shores and built the strongest nation in the world.  Every family has a David Kamenetz.  This is our story. This is who we are and what we must remain.”

Construction and welding apprentices prepped through training grant 

A new Baltimore County training program will prepare workers for apprenticeship programs in high-demand construction and welding careers. The program focuses on participation by veterans, ex-offenders, low literacy and low income individuals and people with disabilities. The core training prepares welding workers, highway maintenance workers, pipe layers, construction equipment operators, electricians, carpenters, and masons.

Baltimore County’s American Job Centers in Randallstown, Hunt Valley and Eastpoint will identify job seekers who can benefit from the training and want to pursue a registered apprentice program in construction careers.  The Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC) will provide the training.

“Baltimore County’s workforce development programs are laser-focused on matching motivated workers with jobs. There is high demand for workers in heavy construction. This program offers a new career pathway for individuals looking for a fresh start,” said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz.  

First year Registered Apprentices average $15.00 per hour in wages. All participants completing the training will obtain an industry-recognized credential or certificate of completion.

Training is funded through a $184,400 grant to the Baltimore County Department of Economic and Workforce Development from the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, through the Highway or Capital Transition Construction Skills competitive grants process.

The grant will be presented to the Baltimore County Council for discussion at its work session January 31. 

Revised September 11, 2017