HCPS Blueprint Implementation
What are the main aspects of the Blueprint Legislation?
The statutes related to the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future are extensive and can be found in full here. As a summary, the following represents the overall Blueprint legislation:
How can I find out information about the Blueprint?
The following are great ways to get information about the Blueprint:
1) HCPS Website: https://www.hcps.org/superintendent/blueprint.aspx
2) MSDE Website: https://www.marylandpublicschools.org/Blueprint/Pages/Overview.aspx
3) HCPS SharePoint:
- How to Subscribe to Real Time Updates to Committee Postings (agendas, minutes, presentations): How to Subscribe to Committee Updates.pdf
The following will be part of ongoing communication efforts:
1) Blueprint Newsletter (Coming this Spring)
2) Superintendent’s Bulletin
3) HCPS 411 Update
4) Public Board Presentations and Regular Updates
5) Professional Development
6) Regular Updates on SharePoint: How to Subscribe to Committee Updates.pdf
Within this structure, there is a commitment to diverse perspectives, community partners, and innovative efforts. Each subcommittee has a community partner as a co-chair, and more than thirty (30) outside organizations are participating in Blueprint Committees.
The Office of Strategic Initiatives coordinates the efforts of internal HCPS departments and liaises with MSDE and the Accountability and Implementation Board (AIB) regarding Blueprint requirements.
What are important timelines related to the Blueprint?
The Blueprint statutes have a significant number of mandated timelines that impact program benchmarks and funding. Due to the timing of how the legislation was passed and due to the COVID-19 pandemic, MSDE and the AIB are revisiting timelines. Therefore, local districts are watching for changes in the timeline and are working on the most immediate timelines that are still in effect. Examples of this include portions of the career ladder, COVID-19 recovery, and grant related opportunities.
A comprehensive list of the timelines as prescribed in the final statutes, prior to any changes from a new legislative session or AIB action, can be viewed by internal HCPS employees via SharePoint, here.
How does the Blueprint integrate and align with the HCPS Board Strategic Plan?
Goal 1: Prepare every student for success in postsecondary education and career.
- The Blueprint areas of Early Childhood, Student Supports, and North Star (College & Career Readiness) align with Board long-term goal 1.
Goal 2: Engage families and the community to be partners in the education of our students.
- The Blueprint committee structure, focus groups, and Board reports are aimed at engaging with families and community partners to align with Board long-term goal 2.
Goal 3: Hire and support highly effective staff who are committed to building their own professional capacity in order to increase student achievement.
- The Blueprint Career Ladder aligns with Board long-term goal 1.
Will this impact how our budget is allocated?
Yes. Prior to the Blueprint, all of HCPS’s local funding was unrestricted, meaning HCPS could use the funding as the Board of Education and Superintendent determine. The County Executive and County Council approve the local funding and HCPS determines how it is used via the budget process. Also prior to the Blueprint, the majority of state funding was unrestricted. Even though different demographic populations were used to allocate the state funding, the funds were unrestricted, again meaning the BOE and Superintendent decided how to use the funding via the budget process.
With the implementation of the Blueprint, some of the local and state funds that were previously unrestricted may now be restricted as to use and will require reporting after year end. The funding that will be restricted as to use are in alignment with some of the Blueprint initiatives.
In addition, the state is now calculating a minimum local share for:
- Foundation—total enrollment
- Compensatory Education—free and reduced meal count
- Special Education—special education student count
- English Language Learners (ELL)—English language learners student count
While we believe these are methods for allocation and these funds will remain unrestricted, it is important to note that the state and local shares in these buckets do not cover the historical cost of these programs, meaning that a portion of the other unrestricted state and local funds covers the difference.
The Budget Office continuously monitors all fiscal impacts and is adjusting as necessary.
How will my voice be heard?
The current committee structure represent community, school-based, and central stakeholders. Outside of these committees there will be work groups and focus groups of various goals and unique representation to support implementation and to provide program evaluation along the way.
How will my job be impacted by Blueprint legislation?
Prior to any implementation decisions it is challenging to identify how each person’s work might be impacted. The ten years of implementation benchmarks and requirements will be uniquely implemented at each district. Here are a few examples of what can be expected:
- Career Ladder:
There will be a focus on incentivizing our most qualified teachers to stay in the classroom and at getting our most qualified teachers to work at schools with more typical turnover and staffing challenging. There will be considerations about structuring of time and how high qualified teachers can provide teaching to support more students in innovative ways. There will be continued efforts at ensuring diversity and representation in our entire staff.
An example of immediate changes can be found in the designation of Blueprint Career Ladder Low performing Schools, which provides a monetary incentive for NBC teachers to work at a designated school. View this chart to see how the Blueprint Career Ladder Low performing Schools fits in with unique school designations, here.
- North Star/College & Career Readiness:
There will be efforts to align our college & career readiness work with the HCPS North Star initiative. HCPS will continue to grow pathways for students in early college, advanced coursework, and career-oriented certifications and technical education. There will be a look towards career counseling in middle school and increasing exposure to a variety of career options.
- Student Supports:
There will be efforts to grow the work in community schools, mental and behavioral health, and getting more resources for English language learners, special education students, high poverty areas, and meeting all students where they are to be successful in school.
- Early Childhood:
There will be expansion of pre-K offerings at HCPS and long-term planning on HCPS pre-K programs. There will be engagement with private providers and work to have more options for families for early childhood education. Effective implementation will improve kindergarten readiness and reduce intervention needs for students with new access to high quality pre-K programs.
How will teachers find support to pursue national board certification?
For current candidates, we have a small support team of National Board Certified Teachers that meet with the candidates monthly. The focus of these meetings has been the four components. Candidates also receive regular updates regarding free webinars offered by NBPTS. As our number of candidates grow, this structure will be reviewed. There is a dedicated email account for questions: email@example.com. Anyone interested in certifying should check out the National Board site.
Who can I contact for more information?
The following contacts may be useful:
- Director of Strategic Initiatives: Katie.Ridgway@hcps.org
- Strategic Initiatives Administrative Assistant: Ashley.Bowley@hcps.org
- Career Ladder Sub-committee HCPS Co-chair: Benjamin.Richardson2@hcps.org
- Student Supports Sub-committee HCPS Co-chair: Bernard.Hennigan@hcps.org
- North Star Sub-committee HCPS Co-chair: Mike.OBrien@hcps.org
- Early Childhood Sub-committee HCPS Co-chair: Susan.Brown@hcps.org