Strategic Plan Update

Juvenile Services Education System of MSDE

The Strategic Plan Verification Project Newsletter: September 2017, #9

What's Next in UMD Strategic Plan Support?

As promised (Update 4/17), the Strategic Plan has been distilled into Benchmarks with specific language regarding persons responsible, timelines and targets, and evidence in a 4-page, 42 item document. This document will guide the process of gathering data that will be used to develop the second report by the Strategic Plan Verification Team on JSES education for youth this coming winter. The Team (Dr. Leone, Dr. Fink and Miji) will continue to work with JSES leadership and coordinators to refine expectations. We will be making site visits this summer and fall. This collaborative effort combines feedback from principals and advocates and attempts to avoid burdensome data collection, instead mining existing data to best exhibit the good work being done by JSES and areas still in need of improvement.
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Transforming schools in Juvenile Justice facilities through the power of Blended Learning.

Unjammed is a year-round program that begins with a multi-day intensive training on blended learning held in each summer. This year, Unjammed was held in Baltimore, MD in July. More than 60 teachers, administrators, and secure care staff from several states participated in the intensive training activities.

Last year, teachers from four Maryland JSE schools participated. These schools included; Meadow Mountain, Green Ridge, Alfred D. Noyes and Charles Hickey. This year, Maryalnd was accepted again into this program the schools that participated were; Victor Cullen, Cheltenham and Waxter.

Principals, DJS staff, and JSE staff joined teachers for the last two days of the conference. A primary focus of Unjammed is to introduce teachers to new technology and applications. Unjammed will work with teachers and JSE and DJS leadership to improve student access to cutting edge technology that has the potential to improve the quality of education services. Participating states and teachers become part of a national network of juvenile correctional educators and systems that can provide resources and support. Following the conference, CEEAS staff works with participating agencies by offering intensive coaching and peer support to the teachers, and ongoing technical support to agency administrators.

Read more about this initiative.
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The Voice- Juvenile Justice is a club at the University of Maryland begun by two students as a part of The School of Public Policy and the new Do Good Institute. The mission of The Voice is: “to empower incarcerated youth by fostering positive connections and providing creative outlets for expression.” Towards that end, The Voice sponsors exchanges between UMD students and scholars in juvenile justice placements. Over the last three years, UMD students have exchanged poetry, essays, and speech-writing efforts with youth from Oak Hill, Meadow Mountain, and Waxter.

Many students from Dr. Fink’s EDSP220 “Disability in Community” course, a scholarship in practice course for mainly 1st and 2nd year students, have joined The Voice as part of their service-learning project for the course. During the Winterterm 2017 – students exchanged current event essays with youth from Meadow Mountain. Principal Angelique Aman worked specifically with post-high school students to develop their writing skills. Here is a comment from a UMD student about exchanging essays on the topic of “Police Brutality”

"As someone who lives in Baltimore, MD, I only see negative interactions between young men and the police. This essay allowed me to realized that not all young men are filled with anger toward police and many young men realize there needs to be a peaceful approach in order to fix this issue. Overall, his essay was a refreshing perspective on a hot topic in the US."

Principal Prakash Anthony facilitated a summer writing exchange at Waxter. Teacher Dr. Garcia had all of her ELA students write 5 paragraph current event essays that involve stating a position, researching evidence, providing an opposing viewpoint and a conclusion. Then several essays were cleared by security and exchanged with UMD summer EDSP220 students. A UMD student reflected on the experience:

"I honestly enjoyed this writing exchange very much. I would love to read more of the writings and give my feedback on it in the future if that is possible. I think that the more I can influence the younger generation to make change, the better the world will be in the future."

We hope to continue The Voice writing exchanges particularly for the all online version of EDSP220 (January and June). Here is a short video about The Voice - .

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Strategic Plan Newsletters Have a Link

This is the 9th edition of the Strategic Plan Update, newsletter published as a part of the partnership of MSDE/JSE and the University of Maryland. Many of you have received the link to the newsletter on the website,, via email. To reach more viewers (and those that may have gone to SPAM) we have made the newsletter available through the JSE homepage (tab to the left – University of Maryland Partnership) where pdfs of Updates will be archived. We hope you read and tell others to view updates on the Strategic Plan implementation, JSE news and events. Find out more here:

We will continue to archive Updates and periodic project reports.